Karen Hallion is originally from Nahant, Massachusetts, located just north of Boston. She is a 1997 graduate of Ringling School of Art and Design and holds a BFA in Illustration. Karen taught elementary school art until 2009 when she transitioned to working full-time as a freelance artist.
Karen has done licensed work for Marvel, LucasFilm, Cartoon Network, DreamWorks Studios, Cryptozoic, TOPPS, Her Universe, Disney, Patrick Rothfuss, Chronicle Books, as well as done freelance work for Disney Imagineering. She and has had t-shirt designs featured on Threadless, Tee Fury, Tee Turtle, teeVillain, RIPT,and Qwertee.
Karen was nominated for a 2013 Geekie Award for Best T-shirt Design and won the first-place grand prize in the 2013 DreamWorks Studios’ “How to Train Your Dragon” t-shirt design contest. Her work has been featured as part of a Yetee Art Gallery exhibition and she illustrated the Doctor Who 12th Doctor #1 Midtown Exclusive Variant Cover published by Titan Comics in October 2014. She was also a featured artist in the 2015 ImagineFX The Art of Film - Star Wars. In 2015, Karen designed the “Wizard School” card game created by DFTBA Games and Hank Green which raised more than $450,000 via Kickstarter. She also raised more than $70,000 in Kickstarter in 2017 to fund the creation of her original character, Celara, via a 13 month calendar. In 2018, she was a contributing artist for the book Star Wars: Women of the Galaxy by Amy Ratcliffe.
She has been a guest panelist throughout numerous years for Threadless, Nerd for A Living, and Tee Fury as well as a special guest panelist with John Green at the 2016 NerdCon to record the podcast ‘Dear Hank and John’. She was also a featured artist at the 2015 and 2016 Star Wars Celebration Art Shows and a 2017 guest at VidCon, NerdCon and Awesome Con.
Karen speaks fluent geek and pop culture, notably Star Wars, Firefly, Buffy, Harry Potter, Dr. Who and Steampunk. She counts the amazing work of Glen Keane, Audrey Kawasaki, and Alphonse Mucha among her significant influences. She currently lives in Swampscott, Massachusetts with her two sons and her partner, Brandon.