Dean began drawing clowns and cowboys on bits of wood on the floor of the garage at age 3.
Ducks and buck-toothed businessmen ran a close second. Over the next few years his oeuvre grew to include astronauts, spaceships, superheroes, robots and noir-esque detectives.
He has illustrated several picture books, including 'Ten Little Elvi' (Tricycle Press/Random House), 'My Dad's a Wrestler' (Lothian) and the to-date unpublished 'Stealing the World', (both with the super-talented Matt Zurbo); and in 2011 wrote and illustrated his very own 'The Search for Bigfoot Bradley' (Windy Hollow).
'I got a Rocket!', again written by Matt Zurbo and published by Penguin, was adapted as an animated television series by SLR productions and Taffy Entertainment, winning an Emmy Award in 2008.
He has worked extensively as an editorial illustrator and has also produced character designs for major food and beverage brands, and adapted his own character designs for Penguin’s best-selling 'Deadly' books (by Paul Jennings and Morris Gleitzman) for the Deadly animated series.
His work has appeared in Communication Arts Illustration Annual, 3x3 Illustration Annual, The Australian And New Zealand Illustration Awards and the MADC.
In 2011 Dean was a speaker at agIdeas, the international design seminar.
Other highlights include designing and illustrating the 'Long Story Shorts' series for Affirm press.
Clients include: Penguin Books Australia, Australia Post, ANZIFF-The Institute, VicRail, The Age-Sunday Life Magazine, Tricycle Press, Goldman Sachs JB Were, Mainland Dairies, Heinemann Publishing, Coles Myer, Royal Auto Club Victoria, Asia inc. Magazine, Australian Football League, Australian Council of Trade Unions, Australian Cricket Board, The Big Issue, Carlton & United Breweries, Plum Financial Services, National Australia Bank, Text Pacific, Victorian Arts Centre, Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Lothian/Hachette, The Law Society Journal of New South Wales, Great Ocean Quarterly, Royal Australian College of Medical Practitioners, Child Magazine.