Love Letters for the Subway

I love working with type and I started making this set of hand-drawn, animated letters representing New York City’s subway lines as a love letter to NYC. I’ve pulled the imagery from the neighborhoods that our trains move through, used common items in the subway as textures, and found shapes in the architecture and sights around us as we get where we’re going. I’ve been drawing these on the trains, and other subway riders have peered over my shoulder as I work and started conversations with me about the lines they take to live, play and work and the communities we move through.

Love Letters to the Subway launches as part of the 2023 edition of #36DaysOfType. It’s also an Official Selection of the 2023 Coney Island Film Festival.


Illustration and motion graphics: Mary Hawkins
Composer and sound designer: Carlos Dengler

The 23 Love Letters for the Subway, by Mary Hawkins with Carlos Dengler