Nina Töwe was born in Hamburg in 1971. She studied illustration, specialising in children’s books, at the Academy of Applied Arts and Sciences. One of her favourite books in her childhood was the picture book ‘The Whale and the Watertower’ by Rüdiger Stoye who later became her teacher. Nina’s illustrations for ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’ are inspired by the sixteenth-century paintings of Giuseppe Arcimboldo, best-known for creating imaginative portrait heads made entirely of objects such as fruit, flowers, vegetables and fish. She is now a freelance artist living with her family just outside Hamburg.