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Historic Hendon Graphic Novel: Ilke Misirlioglu

As part of the Historic Hendon project, The RAF Museum has partnered with Middlesex University’s Illustration Course to produce a Digital Graphic Novel. Eleven students from across the Department's First, Second and Third year courses are writing and drawing short stories that bring to life stories of Hendon from 1910 to the present day.

This blog gives an insight into the preparation and work of Ilke Misirlioglu, who is drawing a story about the post-war applicants to the Auxiliary Air Force, with an exclusive look at some behind-the-scenes drafts.

Tell us about yourself and your work

Hi, I'm Ilke, I'm currently in my 2nd year studying illustration at Middlesex Uni.  I like to make magazines focusing on education and awareness from all topics, ranging from science to queer activism.

One man looking at another man, with him saying ' They must have seen something in you.'


What interests you about the project and your story?

My story is about an ex-flight lieutenant in the Second World War, seeking to apply to the RAF as a pilot after the war has ended, despite being an amputee. It seeks to focus on the impact the war has had on people, especially veterans. I think this part of history is often forgotten about.Sketch of a man sitting in the Greyhound Pub

What are your artistic influences?

I'm influenced by all things that are around me, most prominently the animation I grew up with like the 'Powerpuff Girls' and 'Sailor Moon', as well as more recent shows like 'Adventure Time and Steven Universe'. Aesthetically I'm a fan of mid-century modern design, geometric shapes, block colour and minimalism.

Sketch of a man talking - everyone has been effected by the was either physically or mentally

What is the most interesting thing you have learned since starting this project?

There was a lot I didn't know! I had known the role of the RAF flying planes in the Second World War, but not much in else, so I was surprised to see how much work went on behind the scenes such as the different roles of the ground crew.

Picture of a Hangar

What do you think makes a comic book a great way to tell RAF stories?

I think comics are a way of telling stories in a way that the reader can get close to and identify with, something that can be difficult to do so with stories that are set in the past. Images help the reader to understand what life may have been like before smart phones and the internet.


You can find more of Ilke’s work online on Instagram

The Historic Hendon project is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund

The Heritage Lottery Fund logo

Joe Sullivan : Heritage Outreach Officer
About the Author

Joe Sullivan : Heritage Outreach Officer

As Heritage Outreach Officer for the Museum's London Site, I am responsible for working with various local community groups introducing the Museum's collection to them whilst assisting them in key events

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