20 Eric Carle Quotes From the Famous Children’s Author and Illustrator

If you enjoyed his books as a child (or parent), you’ll enjoy these Eric Carle quotes.

Eric Carle is the author and illustrator of many popular children’s books.

In total, he has published 70+ books.

His most popular book is The Very Hungry Caterpillar which has sold over 50 million copies in 66 languages.

Carle’s career began as a graphic designer.

He was eventually asked to illustrate a children’s book, which led to his collaboration on Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

After that, he began writing his own stories.

He has written many childhood favorites that stand the test of time, including The Very Lonely Firefly, Does a Kangaroo Have a Mother, Too? and The Grouchy Ladybug.

These Eric Carle quotes give you a behind-the-scenes look at the famous author.

If you enjoy this article, check out our collection of Dr. Seuss quotes on happiness, gratitude and success.

Eric Carle Quotes Showing His Creativity

Eric Carle knew he would be in the arts but had no idea he would create children’s stories. His words are encouraging and insightful.

1. “The secret to my success is that I never, ever give up.” – Eric Carle

2. “I knew even as a child that, when I grew up, I would be an artist of some kind.” – Eric Carle

3. “If you want to change the world, start with one child.” – Eric Carle

4. “The hardest part is developing the idea, and that can take years.” – Eric Carle

5. “I do my best to simplify and refine, to be logical and harmonious.” – Eric Carle

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6. “Ultimately, my aim is to entertain, and sometimes to enlighten, the child who still lives inside of me.” – Eric Carle

7. “They are deceptively simple. I admit that. But for me, all my life, I try to simplify things.” – Eric Carle

8. “I also try to keep an open mind, to listen to my intuition and allow for the unexpected, the coincidental.” – Eric Carle

9. “I try to express the essence of my stories and ideals very clearly, using simple shapes.” – Eric Carle

10. “I have always strived to create entertaining and educational books, books that children will want to read again and again.” – Eric Carle

Encouraging Eric Carle Quotes

It’s easy to see successful people and think it just comes easy to them. However, these Eric Carle quotes show that even he struggled at times.

11. “Simplify, slow down, be kind. And don’t forget to have art in your life—music, paintings, theatre, dance, and sunsets.” – Eric Carle

12. “Brown Bear, Brown Bear was king of my first important book.” – Eric Carle

13. “One day, I think it’s the greatest idea ever that I’m working on. The next day I think it’s the worst that I’ve ever worked on—and I swing between that a lot.” – Eric Carle

14. “My own style grew out of my work as a graphic designer.” – Eric Carle

15. “We have eyes, and we’re looking at stuff all the time, all day long. And I just think that whatever our eyes touch should be beautiful, tasteful, appealing, and important.” – Eric Carle

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16. “That’s something I learned in art school. I studied design in Germany, and my professor emphasized the responsibility that designers and illustrators have towards the people they create things for.” – Eric Carle

17. “It’s taken me a long time to realize—and it is sinking in—how important this book is. And I have a certain distance now. I’ve done it such a long time ago.” – Eric Carle

18. “The lovely feeling of my pencil touching paper, a crayon making a star shape in my sketchbook, or my brush dipping into bright and colorful paints—these things affect me as joyfully today as they did all those years ago.” – Eric Carle

19. “The Very Hungry Caterpillar story is about hope. You, like the little caterpillar, will grow up, unfold your wings and fly off into the future.” – Eric Carle

20. “Let’s put it this way: if you are a novelist, I think you start out with a 20 word idea, and you work at it, and you wind up with a 200,000 word novel. We, picture book people, or at least I, start out with 200,000 words, and I reduce it to 20.” – Eric Carle

What are Your Favorite Eric Carle Quotes and Books?

Carle was known for the unique way he created his book illustrations.

He layered hand-painted paper into collages, creating the look you can see in his books.

His books are also known for touching base with children where they are, connecting with their emotions, and teaching them something about nature and the world.

Carle and his wife founded the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, which is located in Massachusetts.

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Over the years, he received many awards, including many honorary degrees.

He was also awarded The Original Art Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of Illustrators, the Kurt Vonnegut Jr. Literature Award, and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award.

Eric Carle passed away in 2021 at the age of 91.

If you enjoy his words and illustrations, share your favorite Eric Carle quotes with us in the comments.

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