Trevor Sorbie commission for The Covent Gardener magazine

I recently completed a commission for the Autumn Issue of the lovely The Covent Gardener magazine. The brief was to illustrate an article on how the inspiring Trevor Sorbie MBE is using his scissor skills to help people in their fight against cancer. I was delighted to be able to contribute to such an inspirational and moving article. We decided on an appropriate wig theme, which meant that I got to snip away, merry in the irony that I’m a ‘Barber’, cutting hair… of the paper variety! Ironic or WHAT! I absolutely loved this brief and I’m so excited to share the finished illustration with you below! Scroll down to find the first draft and some ‘in the making’ snaps from the studio too. You’ll see from my sketchbook that in the initial design, the heads are stood on striped red and white boxes. These were dropped as the design developed as I felt they detracted from the detail of the mannequin heads and props. I still wanted to incorporate the iconic ‘hairdresser red’, so I added this in as a bold and eye catching backdrop instead. Another crazy exciting thing I should mention about this issue of The Covent Gardener is that the cover was illustrated by THE Sir Quentin Blake!… and what a striking and vibrant treat it is! I’d love to hear your thoughts!

 

papercut wigs trevor sorbie charity The Covent gardenerisobel barber paper bobbi pinsisobel barber papercut wigs trevor sortie charity

 

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wigs-draft-sketchbook

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isobel barber paper cutting illustration studio

 

isobel barber paper bobbi pins

 

 

The Bridgeman Studio Award 2016

For the third year running Bridgeman Studio ran an award this summer, with the aim of uncovering and celebrating new contemporary artists worldwide. There’s always a grand prize and this year it was a £1,000 commission to illustrate the cover image for the next book by Rosie Garland, published by The Borough Press. To enter, all you had to do was submit images on the theme of ‘Night’. The images could be new or pre-existing. I submitted two of my 3D paper illustrations, the first is called ‘The City Sleeps’ and was inspired by the streets of Amsterdam. I snipped it up using the mountain of photographs I have from multiple visits to the city as references. The second illustration is called ‘Light up the Night’. I like the simplistic graphic feel of this one from afar, but the complexity when you take a closer look. Neither piece are my usual vibrant palette, but I’d love to hear your thoughts! I’ve also included some ‘under construction’ snaps from the studio and a picture of ‘Light up the Night’ next to the primary sketch I made for the piece. The primary sketches I work from usually take all of about one minute to complete and are customarily scrawl-like! However, they allow me to visualise the composition of the piece before I commit to paper, so are always a fundamental part of my design process!

 

papercut cityscape buildings isobel barber

 

3d paper sparkler night Isobel barber Bridgeman Studio

 

3d paper engineering isobel barber night

 

paper engineering behind the scenes isobel barber

 

paper cutting studio Isobel Barber

 

studio behind the scenes Isobel Barber

 

Isobel x