Paweł Jońca is an artist from Warsaw, Poland, who specialises in press illustration. He specialises in illustration for the press. The themes he most often deals with include social, psychological or new media issues. He also designs posters and covers, including for all Polish editions of Chuck Palahniuk’s writing. His works have been featured in the prestigious album “Illustration Now, vol. 5” published by TASCHEN and showcasing the profiles of 150 of the most interesting authors of contemporary illustration in the world. He has won a number of awards, including Chimera (multiple times), Grand Front, and two gold, one silver, and two bronze awards for his illustrations submitted in contests organised by Advertising Creators Club.
The poster “Russian Bear” was born out of an association that came to my mind at the end of February. Let’s take a look at the flag of Ukraine. It looks like a yellow-blue Lego brick, and anyone who has stepped on such a brick knows that it is quite a tough guy. It’s, like, indestructible, and even though it’s tiny, stepping on it barefoot can hurt quite a bit. As tough as Ukraine! So I started playing around with the idea of a big foot — first of a werewolf, then of the Godzilla, which slowly turned into a bear, and the red colour emphasized its Russian origin. This is how the “Russian Bear” poster came into being, becoming an Internet phenomenon over time, shared across Twitter and Reddit tens of thousands of times. It was covered all over Europe, it became part of the permanent collection of the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg, not to mention being featured in many posts and articles online about the best creative efforts relating to the war in Ukraine.