Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 9, 2019

Illustrator Saturday – Marcin Poludniak

Marcin Poludniak, a cheerful and, as some people say, amiable illustrator – that’s me 🙂

I graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Wroclaw, and now work as a freelancer. Phillip K. Dick wrote once that all of us are made of water, and the problem for us is that not only do we have to walk around without being absorbed by the ground but we also have to earn our livings. I really keep trying but every year I am being absorbed more and more… by the world of children’s illustration. My cooperation with the publishing houses like Wilga, Zielona Sowa and Siedmiorog helped me to get to know this world and create it according to my imagination. Also, I am not a stranger to a bit different, less carefree but still very interesting world of advertisement. I create images of people and products for its needs, and the graphic art for its interactive applications and websites. I create my illustrations using paper, pencil, computer and music – without which the world would be definitely less colourful place. I love what I do, and I am not going to change it for anything else… well, perhaps apart from a large chunk of bitter chocolate.


Firstly I get a text or a topic of illustration. I try to visualize it and pencil a sketch on a piece of paper. In this example, the topic is Smog. Very hot topic in Poland right now, we have a big problem with it. Then I scan the sketch and send it to the client. If there are any comments, I correct it. When the sketch is accepted, I proceed with the work in colour.

I create my illustrations in colour on a computer. I open a sketch in Photoshop or Illustrator. I create a new layer but set opacity to 50%. Thanks to it I can see the sketch when I apply the colour.

After selecting all necessary colours I change the opacity of the layer to 100%. I already have a colour base.

Next, I choose the direction of the light. I mark the light using gradient. On a separate layer of course.

Using the selected tools in the program, I colour the main characters in the illustration. Everyone uses different tools. I usually use various brushes, gradients and masks. 

At the end I colour the background.

Finished illustration.

How long have you been illustrating?

My adventure with illustration began when I was a child. I imitated famous illustrators. It was mainly comics. At that time I didn’t know that the illustration would become my profession.

After finishing high school of fine arts, I studied Architecture and graduated from Academy of Fine Arts in Wroclaw. After that, I wanted to be an interior designer, but I became an illustrator instead 🙂

What and when was the first painting or illustration that you did where someone paid you for your artwork?

The first small book with my illustrations was published in 1999 but these were the very beginnings and my style was still developing.

Have you always lived in Poland?

Yes, but I often travel around Europe and I fell in love with Spain. I am going to move there one day.

What inspired you to attend the Academy of Fine Arts in Wroclaw?

I don’t know. Probably a desire to paint.

Did the school help you find illustration work?

Yes but only in educating me. You have to look for a job by yourself.

Do you feel art school influenced your illustrating style?

No. Absolutely no. I usually created monochrome graphics there. It has nothing to do with what I do now. After graduation I was still looking for my own style.

What type of advertising work have you done?

I had worked in an advertising company for 7 years. I created images of people and products for its needs, and the graphic art for its interactive applications and website.

What is the art community like in Poland?

Wow 🙂 It’s a very broad subject for a separate conversation 🙂 Certainly, the artistic community here is very interesting. We have a long, rich and often painful history and very often you can see it in polish artists works.

You mention publishers in Poland in your bio. Have you illustrated a book for them?

Yes, of course. I have been cooperating with them for several years now, illustrating many books.

Do you have portfolio that you show off to book publishers?

Yes. Mainly on my website but also on various websites where you can present your work: behance, pinterest, childrensillustrators etc.

Do you have an artist rep. to represent your illustrations? If so, who and how long. If not, would you like to find one?

I am represented by Sylvie Poggio Agency in London but not exclusively. They work with publishing companies, and design agencies worldwide.

Have you done any book covers?

Yes. I made covers for almost all my books, but not all of them.

Would you illustrate a book for an author who wants to self-publish?

Yes of course. I invite you to work with me. I like new challenges 🙂

Have you worked with educational publishers? Which ones?

Yes, with polish  publishers: Nowa Era, Greg, Pryzmat.

Have you done any illustrating for children’s magazines? Which ones?

Unfortunately not. Pity because it would be a new experience.

Have you ever thought about illustrating a wordless picture book?

Yes. I like that kind of books very much. I am working on such project now and I want to publish it when I am done. It will take some time but I hope it will be enjoyable 🙂

What do you think is your biggest success?

When children look at my illustrations and smile- it is my biggest success 🙂

What is your favorite medium to use?

I create my illustrations using paper, pencil, computer and music – without which the world would be definitely less colourful place. I love what I do, and I wouldn’t change it for anything…

Has that changed over time?

Yes. I used to paint everything by hand: pen, pencil, paint…everything that left a trace on paper 😉 I still do it now from time to time, but I usually work on a computer and tablet.

Where do you do your illustrating?

At home, in my small studio, in the company of my cat who is usually very interested in my work. Sometimes he lies down on my desk and doesn’t let me work. Probably he thinks he would do it better 🙂

Have you exhibited your art to the public?

Yes. In art galleries, bookshops and at artistic events.

What type of things do you do to market your art?

I use social media forums, sites which offer opportunity to promote work directly to publishes and buyers, and other portals where you can present your work.

Do you try to spend a specific amount of time working on your craft?

I like my work. I get a lot of pleasure from it. I do not limit my time, but I try to find time for everything: my family, friends and the rest.

Do you take pictures or research a project before you start?

Sometimes. It depends on the project. I think I rather observe, but I always have my camera with me and when I see something interesting, I take a picture.

Do you think the Internet has opened doors for you?

Of course. It is much easier to reach to a customer, contact is quicker, you can show your illustrations to more people. I think it makes everything a bit easier, but in the same time the competition is much higher.

Do you use Photoshop or Painter with your illustrations?

Yes. I work on the Photoshop and Illustrator.

Do you own or have you used a Graphic Drawing Tablet when illustrating?

Yes. Graphic Drawing Tablet is my indispensable tool of work.

Do you have any career dreams that you want to fulfill?

I don’t want to jinx it 😉 I would like to publish my very own book I am working on now. If children like it, it will be great.

What are you working on now?

At the moment I am designing puzzles for children, and I am making illustrations for a series of books for the youngest children about a teddy bear. In my free time I work on my book.

Do you have any material type tips you can share with us? Example: Paint or paper that you love – the best place to buy – a new product that you’ve tried – A how to tip, etc.

I am testing a new tablet ,,Wacom MobileStudio”  now. A very good working tool. I recommend it to all illustrators who work on  computers. I think I will buy it as it helps me with my work.

Any words of wisdom on how to become a successful writer or illustrator?

Work, work, work 🙂

Thank you Marcin for sharing your talent and expertise with us. Make sure you share you future successes with us. To see more of Marcin’s work, you can visit him at: Website:

If you have a minute, please leave a comment for Marcin. I am sure he’d love to hear from you and I enjoy reading them, too.

Talk tomorrow,



  1. Excellent work! Vivid colors and so much fun, I love it 🙂


  2. I love your work, there’s an amazing sense of life and fun and a wonderful vibrancy to your artwork. Lovely to hear more about the process of creating it!


  3. Thank you for sharing your vibrant work!


  4. Thank you very much! 🙂


  5. Ha! These are just terrific!


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