Diane Stanley was born in 1943 and was raised in Abilene, Texas. She later attended both Trinity University and Johns Hopkins University. Her portfolio of children's book illustrations was creative enough for her to begin publication in 1978. She became an art director for G.P. Putnam & Sons and later began retelling and illustrating classic children's books. Stanley has revamped the fairy tale, Rumpelstiltskin's Daughter and has also researched the children's biographies Cleopatra and Leonardo Da Vinci. She also illustrated her mother's book, The Last Princess.