Bruce Whatley was born in Wales, and immigrated to Australia with his family when he was five years old. Ten years later, they returned to Britain, and he went on to earn a degree in illustration at Manchester Polytechnic. He returned to Australia with his partner Rosie, where he worked as an illustrator and art director in the advertising industry, and continued to paint watercolors and oils inspired by the Australian outback. He illustrated his first children's book in 1992, and has been publishing them ever since. Many are collaborations with Rosie, who is now his wife. They have two children, Ben and Ellyn.