Heidi Rasch
Heidi Rasch

Heidi Rasch

Heidi Rasch is an artist and illustrator of children’s books. She is currently working on two books for Wisdom Tales: Ms. Rasch’s first contribution to our books as an illustrator will be Indian Boyhood: The True Story of a Sioux Upbringing (author: Charles Eastman, Ohiyesa), to be followed by Beautiful Peacemaker, another compilation of writings from Eastman.

In Indian Boyhood, Eastman tells his own story by recalling his earliest childhood memories up until his entry into the world of Western “civilization.” Carefully edited for a younger audience by multiple award-winning author and editor, Michael Oren Fitzgerald, and beautifully brought to life by the artwork of illustrator Heidi M. Rasch, the events of Ohiyesa’s childhood will thrill readers with their sense of excitement and adventure. Beautiful Peacemaker is a compilation of three of Charles Eastman’s stories edited by Michael Fitzgerald for young children. It is scheduled for publication in the spring of 2017.

As can be seen below in the sample page from Indian Boyhood, Heidi Rasch has a style all her own. It certainly pays tribute to the work of some great illustrators of other children’s books (including some by Wisdom Tales!), but there is a playfulness and richness that is all her own. Parents and children will appreciate the way she brings animals alive, paying special attention as she does to the unique spirit of the different animals. It will also not be surprising if readers begin to notice in Heidi’s paintings of people a particular attention to detail in the clothes. This is because Heidi studied and worked in the field of fashion design. Readers who would like to see some of her fashion designs based on the traditional patterns of various world cultures, can explore the “Fashion Illustrations” page on her website.

The section below comes from the Heidi M. Rasch website. On the “About” page on that site, there is an extensive biography of Ms. Rasch, including many details of her family, her upbringing in Germany, education, early travels and interests, and her introduction to art. We have excerpted the section below that focuses on her adult life and close connection to American Indian people and ways, which is very much related to her illustrations that capture so well the spirit of the Plains peoples.

In 2006 Heidi married an American writer and editor whom she had met in her teen years while living in Indiana. She then moved from the bright lights of Paris to the forested hills of the American Midwest. For a time she worked at the Indiana University Opera and Ballet Theater, a part of IU’s internationally recognized Jacobs School of Music. She also volunteered her time for local theater productions. After her two children were born, she introduced them to painting and storytelling, in the same way that her sister Muna had done for her. Creating stories and then illustrating them has become a favorite family activity, and this interaction with her own children is the driving force behind her desire to create quality children’s books for all children.

She has continued to explore the world and its cultures, first with her husband, and then also with her two young daughters. Her destinations have included Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica, Tahiti, Bora-Bora, Niger, India, Egypt, Morocco, Turkey, in addition to many countries in Western Europe. For the past decade, she has made annual trips to the American West to visit the Crow and Shoshone tribal reservations, where she maintains many close relationships. She and her two daughters were adopted into the Crow tribe by Joe Medicine Crow, at the time the oldest male member of the Crow tribe, and winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Heidi Rasch
Heidi M. Rasch working on some of the illustrations for Indian Boyhood: The True Story of a Sioux Upbringing

More on Artist and Illustrator Heidi M. Rasch:

  • Heidi Rasch’s website is a very attractive and user-friendly site that has an extensive biography, sample pages from the books she has illustrated, galleries of her other artwork (e.g. her fashion and costume designs, paintings, etc.), and some of her poetry. Click here to go to the web site of Heidi Rasch in a new tab or window.
  • Awards for this Author’s Wisdom Tales Books

    • Indian Boyhood: The True Story of a Sioux Upbringing (written by Charles Eastman, edited by Michael O. Fitzgerald, and illustrated by Heidi M. Rasch):
      • Winner in the “Children’s Picture Book: Hardcover Non-Fiction” category of the 2016 USA “Best Book” Awards
      • Silver Medal in the “Children’s Picture Books” category of the 2016 Midwest Book Awards
      • Finalist in the 2016 Reading the West Awards (by MPIBA) for the “Children’s” category

Sample Page Spreads from This Contributor’s Books

Click on the image below to see a larger image and a caption for this and any additional page spreads.