Designers who inspire: Mudrac

Mudrac, a very diligent designer at 99designs, has built a HUGE clientele through successful design contest wins.

As a high school student, he stumbled upon 99designs and after creating his first “bad” design was determined to learn the field of graphic design. His hard work paid off and he landed a permanent design position at a large marketing agency.

Now, at the young age of 20, he has decided to take his real world experience and pursue a degree in graphic design.

We recently received the following letter from Mudrac sharing his story…



Hello 99designs,

My name is Mihailo Kalabic from Serbia. You might know me better as Mudrac.

I am 20 years old and I can freely say I am a professional graphic designer thanks to My interest for creativity and graphic design started when I was around 16 years old. At this age I was drawing and painting and began to find an interest in design. After learning programs and the very basics of design, I felt the need to improve my work.

Since I am a child in the age of computers, I simply googled “design contest” and one of the results was 99designs partnering company, SITEPOINT. For me, that was like giving a baby candy but with the condition that it has to behave well to eat it. I began working and working and working, yet my design was very bad. I knew I was an amateur and I was sure it would get better with time. After several months of continuously posting designs, I won my first contest! It was Hip-hop T-shirts and several other designers were awarded as well.

It was like winning a million dollars.

As time passed I was very motivated and through hard work, I won more contests. I continued working privately with a contest holder. I always had work to fill my free time while I was still in high school. At the end of high school, my designs got much better and my  portfolio on 99design grew.


One night, I was on the site and I got private message: “Nice portfolio. Who are you working for?”

The person that contacted me was a creative director and owner of a large marketing agency, SuperStraw, from Serbia. He invited me to a job interview and I went. I was competing with several other professional designers and somehow I passed successfully.

I got the job as junior designer for a trial period. While working at Strawberry I&S I had the opportunity to work with major brands in the Balkan region. After a month, I passed the trial period and got the job permanently. As time passed, I learned a lot and dealt with very big clients.

Last year, I left Strawberry to pursue a degree in Faculty of Applied Arts with a focus in graphic design. When I have free time, I work on 99designs for pure fun since it became like a game for me. I’ve succeeded in gaining big local clients and I am currently still working with them.


In my career, I have worked for a lot of local brands:

  • Phillip Morris
  • Intelectual Property Office of Serbia
  • Oriflame
  • Mlekara Subotica
  • Poli supermarkets (Italia)
  • Opel
  • Ministry of finance of the Republic of Serbia


As a freelancer at the age of 20, I always have clients to work with. I am currently studying graphic design and have won contests on other platforms while being apart of a few exhibitions in Belgrade.


Thank you Mudrac!

We thank you, Mudrac, for sharing your inspiring story with our design community. We wish you the best of luck in your degree and future success!

View more of Mudrac’s Work

Based in San Francisco, Allison (Alli) Stuart works as Community Manager at 99designs. When she's not writing blogs and communicating with designers, she is working on her Children's Book. She also enjoys extreme sports, like sky diving and traveling to new places. Alli has a Fine Arts Degree with a concentration in Graphic Design from Louisiana State University, her home. Geaux Tigers!
Allison Stuart
View all posts by Allison Stuart
Allison's website


  1. Maka

    wish you the best in future ! ! ! :)

    Reply July 8, 2011 at 12:13 pm
  2. nojac

    Bravo Mudrac!
    Good work! I am your fan :)

    Reply July 8, 2011 at 1:21 pm
  3. rickshow

    Keep up the good work!

    Reply July 8, 2011 at 6:32 pm
  4. Dejan

    Keep up a good work…pozdrav!

    Reply July 8, 2011 at 9:52 pm
  5. Jasmina

    Svaka cast druze, samo MUDRO napred!!! :D

    Reply July 9, 2011 at 12:42 am
  6. amio

    Inspiring story! May you have more and more success in the future. Keep on designing! :)

    Reply July 9, 2011 at 6:04 am
  7. galib almahdi

    bravo……good work!!! go…go….gooooooo….best of luck.

    Reply July 10, 2011 at 1:37 am
  8. Kristina

    Samo napred, zemljače!! ;-)

    Reply July 11, 2011 at 3:41 am
  9. sion

    Bravo! Razbijaš!

    Reply July 11, 2011 at 5:05 am
  10. RedLogo

    Bravo! Svaka cast!

    Reply July 11, 2011 at 5:17 am
  11. Jurgen

    Wish you all the best

    Reply July 11, 2011 at 6:18 am
  12. Digital Envisions

    I even have my degree in graphic design and I’m inspired to try harder..great work, I like the style

    Reply July 11, 2011 at 10:23 am
    • Allison Stuart

      Great! We look forward to seeing that hard work ;)

      Reply July 11, 2011 at 10:50 am
  13. Igor Lale

    Svaka cast brate Srbine :))

    Reply July 11, 2011 at 2:30 pm
  14. Anzor

    just one thing when u design a thing make sure u don’t look like something else ..

    Reply July 12, 2011 at 3:03 am
  15. Roy …. Somenath

    Hello Mudrac

    Best of Luck for Your Future …………………………………………………………. :) :)

    Reply July 14, 2011 at 7:42 am
  16. Wierdo23

    Keep up with good work my friend ;)

    Prijatelju,svaka cast na lepim radovima i zelim ti puno uspeha u daljem grafickom usavrsavanju :)

    Reply July 18, 2011 at 9:09 am
  17. Snaged

    Hello Mudrac

    Nice to listen your story.
    Thanks for sharing.


    Reply July 18, 2011 at 2:27 pm

Leave a comment