Move On Over, Mary Poppins

h1 January 13th, 2011 by jules

Boy, do I love that image.

(I have to say that it’s almost painful to put a post over top the vibrant David Díaz image below, but move on I must.)

I’m here this morning with a quickie post to share some art from another delightful picture book title from the Netherlands. Those folks make the most interesting picture books on quite a regular basis, now don’t they?

The Umbrella from husband-and-wife team Ingrid & Dieter Schubert should be on shelves this Spring—April, I believe, though don’t quote me on that—and comes our way from Lemniscaat Publishers. This is the wordless tale, originally published in 2010, of a young puppy who stumbles upon what appears to be an ordinary red umbrella, though quickly he is whisked away by a sudden gush of wind high into the upper atmosphere for an adventure that seems to take him just about all over the world. These are sprawling spreads that make no apologies for using every inch of space, as it should be in this ever-evolving tale. The Schuberts have great fun with perspective, line, and movement, as the canine spans the globe, riding ocean waves; crossing deserts, wintry hinterlands, and jungles; and trotting across the very clouds — taking in a world seemingly filled with infinite possibilities. The umbrella eventually succumbs to some defeat and is brought down, though I won’t reveal how, only to be approached in the final endpages by the same cat who, in the opening endpages, watches the dog get carried away—both literally and figuratively.

As I understand it, the Schuberts, born and raised in Germany, were once recipients of the Dutch equivalent of a Caldecott, the Golden Brush award. (This is my source, my disclaimer being that it’s quite possible I’m misunderstanding the scope of the award.)

I’ve got the De paraplu version of the book—that is, the Dutch one—so let’s just say lucky for me it’s wordless. Again, it should see a U.S. release this Spring. I’m happy to share some of the Schuberts’ illustrations from the book this morning (“enchanting” comes to mind, though the book is altogether less cloying that “enchanting” sometimes manages to sound), as the art always speaks louder than my attempts to describe it. Here are two more. Enjoy.

(Click to enlarge second image.)

* * * * * * *

DE PARAPLU. Copyright © 2010 Ingrid & Dieter Schubert. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Lemniscaat (Rotterdam, The Netherlands).

14 comments to “Move On Over, Mary Poppins”

  1. I love that image too Jules!!! WOW. I’ve been staring at it for over 5 minutes now. Beautiful work!

  2. Holy Gorgeous-ness- Batman!

  3. I know! The colors!

  4. That top painting pushed all my happiness buttons. Stunning.

  5. I meant to add that it’s not even the full spread, just the right part of it, all that I had to post. (But it’s the loveliest part.)

    Just for the record…

  6. This artwork is beautiful! I especially love the little group of hippos, and how a couple of them are looking up at the dog. So beautiful.

  7. That first image makes me feel cold and windswept. Amazing.

  8. Can’t recommend the Schuberts enough – as a bilingual Dutch/English home we’ve many of their books and they’re lovely. Yes Dieter Schubert did win the Dutch rough equivalent of the Caldecott, the Gouden Penseel in 1987. Other winners, incase you want some ideas for other Dutch illustrators to look out for include:
    2010 – Marije Tolman & Ronald Tolman,
    2009 – Sieb Posthuma,
    2008 – Charlotte Dematons – Lemniscaat USA have at least one of her books – the yellow balloon
    2007 – Joke van Leeuwen,
    2006 – Marit Törnqvist,
    2005 – Annemarie van Haeringen – VERY popular with my kids
    2004 – Jan Jutte
    2003 – Thé Tjong-Khing,
    2002 – Willemien Min

    One of the best loved Dutch illustrators is Fiep Westendorp, but very little of her work is available in English translation

  9. Dieter Schubert was the one who one the price for a picturebook called Monkie.
    Most books they make as a couple. The first of them was a book called “there is a crocodile under my bed”. Entirely drawn with colourpencil (I believe). My personal favourit as a child was ‘totally frogged’ (about a boy who loved frogs and gets involved in lots of adventures). This is a link to the Dutch publisher of their books
    Nowadays they seem to use more watercolour which makes the drawings smoother (Personaly I think they are nicer). Here in the Netherlands there is also a colouringbook of their latest work: the umbrella.
    The latest winners of the golden pencil are indeed Marije Tolman & Ronald Tolman (father and daughter). They made a lovely book, also without words, called ‘the treehouse’.
    If you ever want to know more about some great Dutch books, just contact me. I am happy to show you.

  10. Thanks, everyone. And thanks, Zoe and MEvR. I have covered the Tolman’s Tree House here at the blog. It’s linked at the top of this post. It was one of my favorite books from last year.

    I think the coloring book of The Umbrella will be released in the States, too.


  11. I’m buying that book. You know, after this horrible news week, I’m looking at those pictures, and I’m thinking that maybe one reason they are so powerful is that they embody the way children (and all of us) are so fragile and at the mercy of the currents swirling around us. Yet sometimes we arrive safely.

  12. Hi,
    You got me at the first image. I can stare at it all day and still be inspired by it and in awe of it. I can’t wait to see the whole book.

  13. Gorgeous! Thank you for sharing these beautiful images.

  14. This art is breathtaking and stirs something deep in me in me from the unconscious. Some primitive sense of freedom is here and I find it liberating.

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