Something About the Artist: Joy Fisher Hein

Joy Fisher Hein was born in Gainesville, Texas, a world-renowned community circus town. This delightful Texas circus town remains a constant source of inspiration for Joy. Both of her parents were artists, and paints and creative materials were always available to Joy and her two younger siblings. The family moved to Port Arthur when Joy was five and settled in San Antonio when she was eleven.

Inspired by the wonderful art in books that absorbed her, Joy decided as a child that she wanted to illustrate books. Although reading was difficult, her love of the illustrations and her nearsightedness kept her nose in books. It wasn’t until she became a parent that Joy discovered she and several family members wrestle with different forms of dyslexia.

A self-taught painter, Joy paints with acrylics on illustration board. The rest of her family—parents, husband and children&prefer oil and watercolor paints. Joy’s award winning paintings were shown and sold in numerous galleries across Texas from the 1970’s through the early 1990’s. Her dream of illustrating for children came true after she studied with Kathi Appelt, her dear friend, amazing writer and generous mentor, and studied illustration with Diane Stanley, the dynamic illustrator and writer. In 1993, Joy began illustrating textbooks and children’s magazines.

Joy loves nature and has gardened all her life. She is a Texas Master Naturalist and is certified by the National Wildlife Federation in School Yard Habitats.

She lives with her husband, Frank Hein, Professor Emeritus of Fine Art, in the beautiful Texas Hill Country. They are the parents of three wonderful, creative grown children and the grandparents of four budding artists and readers.

Miss Lady Bird’s Wildflowers written by Kathi Appelt and illustrated by Joy, has received numerous awards, including Growing Good Kids Award, 2006; June Franklin Naylor, Honorable Mention, 2006; Children’s Crown Award Finalist, 2006; and the Teddy Award, 2005

Selected Books Illustrated by Joy Fisher Hein

Miss Lady Bird’s Wildflowers by Kathi Appelt

Sam Houston, Standing Firm by Mary Dodson Wade

David Crockett, Going Ahead by Mary Dodson Wade

Inspiration for Educators by Jan Kilby

I Remember Mama by Joyce Smith Williams

Desert Fire by Shirley Frederick



Texas Reading Club 2009 Programming Manual / Libraries: Deep in the Heart of Texas!


Published by the Library Development Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Page last modified: June 14, 2011