MA Visual Communication graduate illustrates untold stories of the Blitz

Visual Communication graduate Mengxia Liu’s artwork has been showcased in a project marking the 80th anniversary of the Blitz.

Mengxia Liu Primary image

Family history experts Ancestry commissioned 33 artists around the UK to create artwork based on Civil Gallantry Award records held at The National Archives, to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the start of the Blitz.The aerial bombing campaign of industrial towns and cities during the Second World War started on 7 September 1940 and continued for more than eight months, causing widespread destruction across the UK.

Mengxia’s art

Mengxia created five pieces of artwork for the project. One illustrates the story of Warden Harry Goodwin, a Brummie who worked overnight to save two families trapped in buildings during the Blitz.

Another piece depicts several people helping to rescue a man trapped underneath a piano, while another shows boys from Central Grammar School with homemade bows and arrows in the Black Mountains at Llanvihangel Crucorny.

Mengxia’s work can be viewed on the Ancestry site, and it was also recently showcased throughout Birmingham city centre on billboards.

Mengxia Liu in-article image

Mengxia said: “As an illustrator, I have learned such a lot from this project working for a large organisation. The complexity of the brief, the contract and payment was difficult, but my tutors prepared me for this moment. I think that is the real starting point of my commercial illustration career.”

MA Visual Communication Course Director Robert Gibb said: “Mengxias’ tenacious ability to be able to change, adapt and question are just a few of the things that the Visual Communication MA has inculcated into her thinking and creative processes.

“Her continued and ongoing successes are the result of her wholehearted endeavour to utilise everything that she has learned while immersed on the programme. She is a shining example of a graduate who has successfully developed and enhanced her unique talents, and continues to engage with many artistic enterprises. We are very proud of her continuing achievements.”

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