Cindy House grew up in coastal Rhode Island. Her mother, a natural history teacher and photographer, inspired a lifelong love of nature. House first explored wildlife art during high school while working at a local bird sanctuary, but instead of pursuing art as a career, she studied wildlife biology at the University of Maine. There, in her senior year, she designed, wrote, and illustrated a small handbook on wildlife for the Boy Scouts of America.
Without formal art training, House illustrated A Guide to the Birds of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. She has illustrated numerous books, including the National Geographic Society’s Guide to the Birds of North America, Book of North American Birds for the Reader’s Digest Association, and A Field Guide to Warblers in the Peterson Field Guide Series. Her work is included in the permanent collections of Woodson Art Museum, Bausch & Lomb Corporation, The Rhode Island Audubon Society, and the Massachusetts Audubon Society. She is a member of the Society of Animal Artists and the Pastel Society of America.
In the late 1980s the focus of her work changed from bird portraiture and illustrations in watercolor to pastel landscapes, along with a strong interest in Impressionism. Cindy and her husband, Eric L. Derleth, a Wildlife Biologist for the US Fish and Wildlife Service, currently reside in New Hampshire.