Illustration: Ohara Hale
James ("Jim") Flora worked as a commercial artist from the 1940s through the 1980s. He enjoyed a lengthy career, was a lifelong fan of jazz and classical music, and was renowned for creating wild illustrations for Columbia and RCA Victor records in the 1940s and '50s. He also created seventeen books for young readers. Flora was born in the small town of Bellefontaine, Ohio, in 1914. He attended the Art Academy of Cincinnati, where he met his future wife, artist Jane Sinnicksen. The Floras moved to Connecticut in 1942 when Jim accepted a job at Columbia Records. Flora and Jane went on to have five children. It was after their first child was born that Flora started to create children's books. Flora passed away at his home in Rowayton, Connecticut, in 1998.