Friday, 1 April 2016

Po drugiej stronie snu - "that Polish book"

Title: Po drugiej stronie snu - On the Other Side of Sleep
Artist: Karolina Kubikowska


My colouring

There are some beautiful colouring books being created in Europe right now. I'll be keeping an eye open for more of them. The huge advantage is that colouring is a universal language. Mostly it doesn't matter if a book has some foreign language in it as long as it isn't telling a story at the same time.

At a glance…..

Size - 220 x 220, 96 pages
Single-sided images - no
Images into the spine - yes
Paper - white, smooth and sturdy
Perforated - no
Water based pens - okay, with care
Who will love it - those who like imaginative, fantasy colouring, those who like pencils and pastels, those who like quite heavily shaded images.

You can find out more….. 

Tell me more…..

Comment: This book is unlike any other I own and has been an awesome surprise. 
At first glance I was a little taken aback by how dark it all seemed as I flicked through. But when I put colour on, it is so beautiful. You don't need incredible colouring skills either, and if you prefer colouring with pencils and pastels, you may really enjoy this book.

Drawing: Karolina is an illustrator, painter and tattoo artist, living in Poland. Her drawings are quite heavily inked and look almost disturbing in some instances but with swathes of gentle colour they come to life amazingly well. Below is the uncoloured kingfisher image that I coloured above, so you can see the difference that colour makes - 

Here is a spread from the book showing how she uses colour - 

This book is a fantasy experience. She describes it as "a fairytale… that encourages spontaneous expression of emotions through art." Some of the images will definitely provoke feelings, and the fairy-tale like images and symbolism will give you more than just a colouring experience. 

Paper and Layout: The book has white to almost grey paper that is sturdy. Some pages have a textured background, a bit like watercolour paper, that I really like. My sense is that the drawings invite pencil and pastel rather than pens. But if you decide to try pens, test on a non image page first.
There is a considerable introduction from Karolina but it is all in Polish. I believe it might be a dialogue that leads you into the magical forest. Also there are two interesting brown background spreads that I think invite you to draw any plants or creatures that interest you.
The pages are double-sided with some images going into the spine. The binding is glued. Some of the images could be viewed in portrait as well as landscape layout.

Coloured by Lou Smith, with permission.

* This book was purchased by me.


  1. I've loved seeing people work in this book. It looks beautiful.

    1. I find it interesting that I haven't seen anything less than lovely colouring from this book. It's a mark of a good illustrator I think

  2. can i find this book in Canada?

    1. You could try Amazon Canada or you can try my link in the review to Book Depositiry which ships free worldwide. That's where I got my copy and I live in New Zealand. Enjoy

  3. Hey there,

    I am pretty new to adult coloring. I started off with Lost ocean and didn´t like it. I thought it was boring and too linear - if that makes any sense. I just purchased this polish book and "Das fantastische Malbuch". I was looking for colored pages and ended up at your page. Lovely coloring! I do really love both looks, and guess I just prefer fantasy topics and greyscale. Have you seen Alice´s Nightmare in Wonderland by Jonathan Green yet? I ordered it along with the polish book, but I haven´t received it yet.

    I am looking forward to coloring this one as well.

    1. Hello. Thanks for dropping in. I haven't actually seen Nightmare myself but I've seen a few colourings from it in a Facebook group called Colourers of Alice in Wonderland. It seems quite gruesome!

    2. Thanks for the reply. I will have a look at the Facebook group. I haven´t seen a lot of Colourings from Greens Nightmare Book yet, only of the "Adventures of Alice in Wonderland". So it´ll be great to see some pieces in the Facebook group. Thanks for letting me know about it...