Kate Digilio

W+K12 at Wieden+Kennedy



Mary Poppins by P. L. Travers

I have to admit I never read Mary Poppins as a child. The film far eclipsed the book by the time I was born, but with Nanny McPhee in recent memory and Saving Mr. Banks on the cultural horizon, I figured I'd give it a go.


If you want to find Cherry Tree Lane, all you have to do is ask a policeman at the crossroads

Reading & Research

My first impression of the book is: holy crap! I forgot how enlightening reading a childrens' book as an adult can be! The book is a bit darker than the film, obviously, with less emphasis on character, and Mary is far from the Julie Andrews Poppins I know. There are no sweet songs or winking well meaning. Poppins is stern, and fun without meaning to be, but what struck me most was the ties of magic and the wind.

(Sidenote: How wonderful is that?! Magic and the wind, both ephemeral, temporary, and random, swirling together to bring people who really need one another together.)

That being said, the book is staunchly turn of the century (I'd even claim Victorian, though I'm no expert) and less visual than I'd imagined. But when it came to making notes for sketches, I revolved around the era, specific events in the book, or Mary herself.

Sketches — Round One

Feedback greatly appreciated!

My current favorite is the last one, with the added float + graphic shadow.

Sketches — Round Two

Umbrella failures! I gave umbrellas another shot, but I kept losing the letters, or it looked like a silly add on. Tried having the letter carried by an umbrella, tried making it look less like a turtle. Good news is that the umbrella doesn't feature too strongly in the book, as a matter of fact! Mary does carry one, and she does float off on one, but otherwise it's not really mentioned. It's much more prevalent in the movie! I did feel better abandoning it after that.

Updated that former favorite with a capital serif T and daaaamn is that thing lookin' sweet.

This is what I think I'm going to go forward with! Thank you so much to everyone who commented with feedback! I'm really looking forward to puttin' this baby in the computer and vectorizing.

Vector — Round One — Work in Progress

The comments about the beloved umbrella really started to get to me! It kept me up nights. It invaded my dreams.

So here it is, a small nod to the original cover, and to Miss Julie Andrews.

Work in progress screenshot! Some curves need help, also it's a bit "quiet." Feedback appreciated!


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