He was born in Harare, Zimbabwe in 1951 into a family of seven children. His real name is Hamish Vigne Christie Paul. He enjoyed a wild and privileged childhood in the African Bushveld. At an early age he was reading comic books and scribbling cartoons.
In 1976, as Korky puts it, he "fled for Europe" and landed up in Greece. Here he met a mad Scot, James Watt, working for a Greek publisher, who commissioned Korky to illustrate a series of educational books teaching Greek children to speak the 'Queen's English'. And so he began his career as a children's book illustrator.
He spent some time working in an advertising agency in London and Los Angeles, and then studied film animation under Jules Engel at California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, California. Korky's first children's book was a pop-up called The Crocodile and the Dumper Truck published in 1980, with paper engineering by Ray Marshall.
In 1986 Korky Paul met the editor Ron Heapy at Oxford University Press, who commissioned him to illustrate Winnie the Witch. It won the Children's Book Award in 1987 and has been published in over 10 languages. Korky has since illustrated more very successful books for Oxford, Random House, Penguin and many other publishers.
Three of Korky's picture books have been adapted for CD-ROM; Dragon Poems, Winnie the Witch, and The Fish Who Could Wish which won the coveted European Multi-Media Award (EMMA) in 1995.
Korky Paul has very quickly become a well-known figure in the children's book world and he is especially popular with the young children who read his books and are carried away into a fantasy world by the illustrations.
In 2006, Korky Paul designed a Christmas card for UNICEF Society Oxford.
Korky Paul has original artwork on display at The Mazza Collection Galleria, University of Findlay, Findlay, Ohio, USA. He is married to the artist Susan Moxley and they have two children, Zoe and Oska. They live in Oxford, Britain.