Mikel Valverde

Mikel Valverde is a prize-winning writer and illustrator. He was born in Vitoria-Gasteiz in Northern Spain and studied in the Fine Arts Faculty at the University of the Basque Country specialising in Graphic Techniques. There he started creating comics and both illustrating for various authors as well as for his own stories. He has published more than a dozen titles, and has developed an illustration style that expresses the humour and wit of his characters.

The author Bernardo Atxaga lives in the same neighbourhood as Mikel, and one day they happened to meet each other. They got talking and Mikel ended up becoming the illustrator of Bernardo’s glorious triumph of short stories entitled The Adventures of Shola (first published in Euskera/Basque) which were translated from the Spanish by award-winning translator Margaret Jull Costa and published by Pushkin Press in 2013. Mikel’s witty, wonderful illustrations of the small dog Shola gloriously capture her character and adventures and endear us to this remarkable – and sometimes maddening! - small creature in all her hilarious complexity.

Mikel still lives in Vitoria-Gasteiz in Spain.

You can see Mikel's wonderful contribution to our What Makes You Smile? project here.

Praise for The Adventures of Shola

'Mikel Valverde s illustrations are most expressive and the English translation comes courtesy of the great Margaret Jull Costa... Shola is one of the most impressive heroines of the modern world'

Eileen Battersby, Irish Times

Did you know…

  • Mikel thinks his job as a writer and illustrator is magical but it means he spends a lot of time sitting. So in his spare time he is as active as possible.

  • Mikel is crazy about cycling!

  • Mikel doesn't like have his photo taken, which is why he has drawn his own portrait picture - cycling!

Find out more on Mikel Valverde's website

What's been happening with Mikel Valverde?