I had a conversation over the weekend in which we talked about our childhoods and how past experiences always end up manifesting themselves into our daily lives today through our work, our relationships with others, or the way we see the world. Related to this was a link my friend Linda sent me last week to a poster series that explores that very notion of something seemingly forgone becoming resurrected again as inspiration for something new. The designer of this integration, Christian Jackson, brings us a familiar yet minimalistic and futuristic view of the beloved children's stories that we used to fall asleep to.
The way Christian has managed to extract the defining components of these stories to make them instantly recognizable to us is a tribute to his ability to fully understand the barest level at which these tales function as lessons for children and adults alike. In the Mary Poppins design, the big red umbrella that became known as one of the character's favorite means of getting work done is illustrated as sheltering those underneath it from the heavy rainfall of tasks that pressure us everyday. Likewise, the Rumpelstilskin poster exemplifies how obsession over a single artifact will consume you until it is all you have left.
I did not need to reread these stories in order to remember what they were about. Christian's posters were enough to not only spark my memory but also help me discern their morals as well. This ties back to the second part of my conversation on Saturday - that design always has a purpose. Whether it serves an agenda that the designer has or facilitates the viewer's understanding of the work, it is ever present as a means to an end.