Shaun Tan

Author & Illustrator

Shaun Tan

Shaun Tan is known as an Australian author and illustrator of children's picture books. He was born in Fremantle, Western Australia on the 15th of January, 1974. As a kid, he grew up in the northen suburbs of Perth, a city in Western Australia. He is known for At the moment, he currently works as an author and artist in Melbourne.

Early Life

As a child, Shaun spent his spare drawing spaceships, dinosaurs and robots and drew pictures for stories and poems. These stories eventually inspired him to write his own short stories. As a teenager, he soon started drawing and painting his own pictures for science-fiction magazines and horror stories. His first illustration that got published was in a magazine called 'Aurealis', in 1990.


During his time at Balcatta Senior High School, he was well known by his teachers and classmates as a 'good drawer' and 'the talented artist'. After high school, he carried on with his education at the university of Western Australia where he chose to study Fine Arts, History and English Literature. He graduated at the university of WA in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts.

Published Works

Published Books Written & Illustrated By Shaun Tan

Shaun Tan has written many books for people of all ages to read and enjoy. His books that have been written and illustrated by him include The Red Tree, The Lost Thing, The Arrival, The Bird King and Other Sketches, Tales From Outer Suburbia, The Playground and his most recent one, Rules of Summer (2013).

Awards & Achievements

Shaun Tan has won many awards and his books have been a hit. The Academy Award for Best Short Film was given to Shaun Tan for his short animated film, The Lost Thing, which was a film adaptation of his book that he wrote and illustrated back in 2000. In 2006, his book, 'The Arrival' , won the award for 'Book of The Year'. In 2007, 'The Arrival' also won the award for 'Picture Book of The Year' by the Children's Book Council of Australia.


His other awards include:


  • Hugo Award for Best Professional Artist (2010, 2011)
  • AACTA Award for Best Short Animated Film (2010 for The Lost Thing)
  • World Fantasy Award for Best Artist (2001, 2007, 2009)
  • Ditmar Award for Best Artwork (2009 for Tales of Outer Suburbia)