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Robin Koontz

Artist: Robin Koontz


Robin Koontz is a freelance author and watercolor illustrator of a wide variety of nonfiction and fiction books for children and young adults. Raised (mostly outside) in Maryland, Alabama, and West Virginia, Robin has lived with her partner in the Coast Range mountains of western Oregon since 1980. Over the years they have planted thousands of native plants and trees on their property in an effort to try to reverse the damage done by years of grazing domestic animals. Their “Funny Farm” is home to several at-risk native species, including coho and chinook salmon. They’ve observed salmon spawning in the creeks over the years and have sadly noticed their decline. Their plight inspired Robin to write Autumn Spawn. She learned raw-edge quilting and created the illustrations using a variety of fabrics.

Robin Koontz camera

Robin Koontz creek

Robin Koontz woods

Artist Statement

Autumn Spawn follows a single salmon’s historical life journey from stream to ocean and then back to her ancestral spawning grounds, where she lays her eggs and soon dies. Her amazing quest is much like all species of Pacific salmon, whose populations have drastically declined in the last century. This story of relentless survival that has evolved over millions of years could inspire people of all ages to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of how nature survives, and to recognize the importance of preserving it.

Robin Koontz Autumn Spawn Sample 1

Robin Koontz Autumn Spawn Sample 2

Robin Koontz Autumn Spawn Sample 3

Robin Koontz Autumn Spawn Sample 4

"Autumn Spawn" sample pages