In addition to his studio experience, Eastman indulged his creativity by authoring and illustrating children’s books. Writing under the pen name of P.D. Eastman, the author was inspired by the style of the famous Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss). Born in 1904, Dr. Seuss was Eastman’s contemporary; the two even collaborated on The Cat in the Hat Dictionary. Although Eastman wrote in his own unique voice, his books were branded as Dr. Seuss™ Beginner Books.

In 1941, Eastman married Mary Louise Whitman. The couple had two sons, Alan Eastman and Peter Anthony (Tony) Eastman. Tony went on to become a children’s author and animator himself, providing some of the illustrations for his father’s book Big Dog… Little Dog.

Eastman joined several eminent organizations throughout his career, including the American Civil Liberties Union, Westport Artists, the Screen Cartoonist’s Guild, and the Audubon Society. By the time of his death on January 7, 1986, Phil (P.D.) Eastman had written and/or illustrated 18 children’s books, many of which enjoyed national acclaim. His titles continue to inspire, educate, and entertain beginning readers in homes, schools, and libraries across the country.