Drawing where cameras are forbidden: In October 2017, cartoonists Aimee de Jongh, Judith Vanistendael and Mei-Li Nieuwland travelled to the refugee camps on the Greek island of Lesvos, in order to make a drawn reportage from the inside. Cameras are not allowed, but sketchpads and pencils were. The cartoonists stayed in the camp for seven days. The visual reports they made, including portraits and studies of the environment, offered unique images of the living conditions. For the first time, not only the people, but their homes, the restrooms, and camp cafes were documented. Through the comics, readers can almost walk through the camps themselves - and they can see the daily hardships that the refugees go through.

Aimee's comic became the 25-page story Europe's Waiting Room. Her colleagues Judith and Mei-Li each made a stunning graphic report of their own. The reports were published and exhibited on various locations. Since its publication, Aimee has given several lectures about her experiences in the camps and the importance of graphic journalism.
Read the final work below.

Original title: De wachtkamer van Europa / Languages: Dutch and English / 25 Pages / Full colour / 12+ / Commissioned by: NRC
It's not allowed to print or use this comic without permission from the author. For inquiries about rights, publication, licensing: contact the author here.

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Belgium and The Netherlands: 2017 by NRC
For inquiries about rights and licensing: contact the author.


During the day spent at the site, Aimee made many sketches of the environment and the people. Portraits were a great way of connecting to the people, and a way of giving something in return for their generosity.