Miffy the creation of Dick Bruna is a perfect example of how a simple character can be amortized over various mediums with tremendous success. Lovable and cute Miffy is a darling around the world.Thanks Dick.
Bruna is best known for his children’s books which he authored and illustrated, now numbering over 200. His best known creation is Miffy (Nijntje in the original Dutch), a small rabbit drawn with heavy graphic lines, simple shapes and primary colors. Other recurring characters include Boris the little boy bear and Barbara his girlfriend, Poppy the kind pig lady and Snuffy the dog. Additionally, Bruna has also created stories for characters such as Lottie, Farmer John, and Hettie Hedgehog.
Aside from his prolific catalog of children’s books, Bruna also illustrated and designed book covers, posters and promotional materials for his father’s publishing company A.W. Bruna and Zoon. His most popular designs graced the covers of the Zwarte Beertjes series of books.
Among his designs those for Simenon’s Maigret are quite famous. They are typified by graphic silhouettes of a pipe on various backgrounds.
Dick Bruna’s father eventually became the largest publisher in Netherlands. His company, A.W. Bruna & Zoon, had a bookstand at virtually every one of the country’s abundant railway stations. His father’s intentions were for Bruna to follow in his footsteps, but Bruna had different plans. Bruna’s brother eventually took over the business, but Dick Bruna always remained a close collaborator.
In 1955, while on holiday with his wife Irene and their child, he saw a rabbit hopping around their house and later made attempts to draw it, thereby creating Miffy. “Miffy” is the English-language name, whereas “Nijntje” (pronounced nein-che) is the original Dutch name of the rabbit, stemming from “konijntje” which is the diminutive form of “konijn” (rabbit).
Over the years Bruna has illustrated over 2,000 covers and over 100 posters for the family business, A.W. Bruna & Zoon. His most recognized illustrations were for the Zwarte Beertjes (English: little black bears) series of books, including The Saint, James Bond, Simenon, and Shakespeare.