|Best known for his "Barnaby" cartoons of the 1940s, and the deceptively simple and wildly imaginative book HAROLD AND THE PURPLE CRAYON, cartoonist and children's-book illustrator/author Crockett Johnson, a professional name for David Leisk, was born and raised on Long Island. After graduating from Cooper Union and NYU in the early 1920s, Johnson held a variety of jobs. While working on a Collier's magazine comic strip called "The Man with the Little Eyes" in the late 1930s, he created the phenomenally successful "Barnaby" cartoons and began his career in the world of children's literature. After he and children's-book author Ruth Krauss were married in 1940, the two moved to Rowayton, Connecticut, where they befriended and mentored a young Maurice Sendak, best known for WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE. Johnson and Krauss created four books together, among them THE CARROT SEED. In the mid-1960s, Johnson switched focus and became a painter.