- born 1978
- born in Hajnówka
- he lives and creates his works in Hajnówka
- he specializes in comics and illustrations for children’s books
“Objectively, all my works include 10% of talent and 90% of persistence. Well, maybe I overestimated those 10%…”
He is a natural artist. He has not completed any art studies and is a biologist by education. Since 2012, he has been a populariser and a scientist of the Mammal Research Institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Białowieża. He is called the precursor of the Polish renaissance of comics for children after 1989 and one of the most popular modern authors creating works only for younger readers.
The most important publications: “Ryjówka przeznaczenia”, the Mammal Research Institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences/Kultura Gniewu, 2012‒2014; “Bartnik Ignat i skarb puszczy”, Centrala, 2013; “Norka zagłady”, Kultura Gniewu, 2013; “Powrót rzęsorka”, Kultura Gniewu, 2015; “Pikotek chce być odkryty”, Widnokrąg, 2016; “Umarły Las”, Agora S.A., 2016; “Nieumarły Las”, Agora S.A., 2017.
The most important awards and distinctions: Artur Rojszczak Award granted by the Club of Scholarship Holders of the Foundation for Polish Science, Krakow, 2010; “Popularyzator Nauki 2011” – the award in the competition of the “Nauka w Polsce” portal of PAP and the Ministry of Science and Higher Education, Warsaw, 2012; the award of the Polish Comics Association in the Best Script Writer category (“Ryjówka przeznaczenia”), Warsaw, 2012; Certificate of an Open Mind in the “Przystanek Młodzi” poll organized by “Gazeta Wyborcza” for introducing the bison and the shrew from the Podlasie region to comics, Białystok, 2014; Award of the Mayor of Hajnówka “Quercus” for 2017, Hajnówka, 2018.
Tomasz Samojlik combines traditional techniques, such as pencil and ink, with putting in colour digitally. His works involve simplifications close to the cartoon convention and, as the artist himself says, the intentional impression of childlike awkwardness. Colourful images with vivid shades, expressive contour and resignation from details which could disturb the reception make Samojlik’s drawings a part of the Polish school of illustrations for children. The artist creates his comics using various conventions, including crime and western; however, he is always faithful to the popularization of knowledge on nature. The panels which are full of colours, adventures, humour and verbal jokes smuggle knowledge unobserved, fitting, therefore, into the Polish tradition of the best educational and funny comics, which are entertaining both for children and for adults.
Samojlik explores the borderlines between drawing and comics and experiments with their form. The examples include his work in the leporello format, a single 7-metres’ long concertinaed illustration, where the passage of time is marked with changing colours. The artist is equally skilful with stories without words, where characters talk using balloons with pictograms.
Tomasz Samojlik Gallery
More information about the artist: tomaszsamojlik.pl