Born and raised in Seattle, when it was still a relatively remote, far away American city, best known for pink sunsets, ferry boats, majestic fir trees, totem poles, and pioneer spirit. She was inspired by blue birds, especially loved books, and dreamed of becoming an illustrator. Eventually she found her way to art school on the east coast, lived on Angel Street in the town of Providence, and worked in a book store. She then packed her art onto a boat in a large wooden crate and followed it to London. It was here that her idiosyncratic children were born onto the page and would go on on to populate books, posters, magazines, and newspapers from the late 70’s onwards.
Gowdy has been based in London since 1977. She has worked internationally as both a fine artist and illustrator, “ renowned for her narrative images with text inscriptions. Her paintings and drawings are populated by a cast of idiosyncratic characters, and her work, which is at once playful, reflective, and philosophical, has been very influential and much imitated in recent years.”