CHILDREN'S BOOK AUTHOR & ILLUSTRATOR DAVID BIEDRZYCKI
My full name is David Robert Biedrzycki. I was born in 1955 in Taylor Pennsylvania. My mom’s name was Nell and my father’s name was Wallace. Both of my grandparents were of Polish decent and they moved to the United States in the early 1900’s.
Growing up I was like most kids, I played baseball in summer, football in the fall and basketball in the winter. My mom told me I learned how to ride a bike without trainer wheels when I was 4 years old. I don’t think I knew how to tie my shoes when I was 4, but I could ride a bike. I used to ride it everywhere. I also loved to go on hikes and pick mushrooms and blueberries with my dad. The first day of trout fishing season we would wake up early, pack a lunch and go fishing all day. I think my love for nature and the outdoors started when I was a kid. When I’d catch a fish I’d run to my dad and have him take it off the hook. These days when I fish, my son Alec takes the fish off the hook for me .
For as long as I could remember I always loved to draw. I think I have my older brother Bob to thank. Using simple shapes and letters, like a big letter “C” and putting a little “c” in it to make an ear, he showed me how to draw someones face. The first face I drew looked like an alien from outer space but I kept practicing and practicing. After what seemed to be my 100th attempt I drew a face that looked pretty good. The next day when his friends were over our house Bob showed them the face his little 4 year old brother drew. They couldn’t believe I did it and they told me I was an awesome artist. I was so proud that I remember it to this day.
I used to draw all the time. Sometimes it got me in trouble with my teachers. I used to draw all over my notebooks and textbooks and even my desk. My fourth grade teacher made a deal with me. If I completed all of my classroom assignments correctly she would let me draw as long as I wanted. She even used to bring things in for me to draw. She entered one of my drawings into a contest at a local museum. When it got into the show I was very excited. It won first place for the 4th grade students!
I always wanted to be the best artist that I could be. I went to Kutztown State University and majored in painting, but after seeing an art show of the best American Illustrators, I knew what I wanted to do with my life.
After graduating from college I moved to Boston and started taking my portfolio around to any place that bought illustration. I met a lot of wonderful people who gave me my first illustration jobs. I started doing work for newspapers, magazine, ad agencies and design firms. It was so much fun.
I married my best friend Kathy in 1981 and we’ve had three kids: Justin, Alec and Julia. They all like to draw but I’m not sure if anyone of them want to be an artist or author yet.
These days you could find me in my studio working at home or out visiting over 70 schools per year. I love school visits. It’s so much fun to visit different parts of the country and talk to aspiring authors and illustrators.