According to Hissey's Old Bear Diary, Old Bear was given to her by her grandmother when she was a baby. During her childhood he was a main focus of her games and then, thirty-two years later, he became the inspiration for her first illlustrated book. Later her childhood bear was joined by other soft toy characters, which she draws on nearly an every day basis.
Jane Hissey is a graduate of Brighton College of Art and was a teacher until the birth of her first child. She is now a full-time author and illustrator and lives in East Sussex with her husband and three children.