Worth a Thousand Words – Air Diagrams

Worth  a Thousand Words

It is often said that “a picture is worth a thousand words” and nowhere is this more true than in the case of Air Diagrams – posters produced for use in the training of air and ground crews.

Material which is often of a complex, technical nature is made much easier to understand, and other messages (relating to topics such as flight safety) were made more memorable through the use of cartoons and striking images.

Many graphic artists were employed by the Air Ministry and Ministry of Aircraft Production, but the majority of them remain anonymous. A few, such as David Langdon and Peter Castle, went on to become respected names in their field.

Air Diagrams were first produced during the First World War, but the bulk of the Museum’s collection (over 10,000 diagrams) were issued between 1939 and 1970. This important collection is one of several classes of Public Records held by the Museum for the nation, and very few other examples have survived.

View a selection of Air Diagrams