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


Wimbledon paper style!

There’s a definite theme going on in todays post, and incase you’ve been walking around with your eyes and ears closed, it’s becaaause… Andy Murray only went and won Wimbledon 2016! So, I wanted to share some tennisy themed illustrations, old and new, from my portfolio with you! The 2D ‘Kit’ papercut below below is one I snipped up a few years ago and is available to buy as a print (framed or unframed) here. You can find a photo of it in the sweetest little colourful nursery in the photo at the bottom! The top 3D papercut is a recent illustration from my portfolio, using much stiffer card to create an almost paper set-like artwork. As I mentioned in my last post, my work has taken such three-dimensional evolvement over the past couple of years and it was so interesting comparing the two papercuts and wondering how my illustrations and interpretations will grow over the next few years!


Isobel Barber 3d paper sport illustration


Isobel Barber desk paper tennis illustration


Isobel Barber paper tennis print


Isobel Barber playroom with tennis print


Thanks for stopping by folks!

Isobel x




Did you know it’s asparagus season here in the UK? It’s such a super time to buy it at the moment as it’s so fresh in the supermarkets and quite often locally sourced! Absolutely one of my favourite vegetables and so versatile, I’ve shared one of my favourite Waitrose asparagus recipes below, give it a whirl!

isobel barber food illustration asparagus


Chargrilled Asparagus with a Fresh Beetroot Salad

  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 10 minutes
  • Total time: 20 minutes 20 minutes

Serves: 6 as a starter


  • 4 tbsp Waitrose Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 500g English asparagus spears
  • 160g bag Waitrose Beetroot Salad
  • 6 tbsp Grana Padano shavings (or other Italian hard cheese), to serve


  1. To make the dressing, place 3 tablespoons of the extra virgin olive oil with the vinegar, mustard and some seasoning in a screw-top jar and shake well. Alternatively, whisk the ingredients together with a fork in a small jug.
  2. Remove any woody stems from the asparagus by bending the end of the spears. They should snap easily at the point where the woody part begins.
  3. Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a griddle or frying pan. Place the asparagus spears in the pan in a single layer. Cook for 5-6 minutes, turning the spears once, until they are slightly charred and just tender (you may need to do this in 2 batches).
  4. Place the salad leaves in a bowl, pour the dressing over and toss lightly. Divide the salad and asparagus between 6 plates. Scatter over some Grana Padano shavings and season with freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately.


Have a great day folks!

Isobel x

Illustrations for Practical Pre-School Magazine

Even though the festive period feels many moons ago now, I hope you don’t mind me sharing the poster I illustrated for the January issue of the lovely Practical Pre-School Magazine! I was commissioned to illustrate an A3 poster for the centre-fold around the title ‘I love shiny things’. I had so much fun working on this playful brief!… Scroll down to see my very first draft… to the final product!


Practical pre-school childcare magazine papercut illustrations Isobel Barber

Practical Pre-School January poster idea 1

Practical pre-school childcare magazine papercut illustrations Isobel Barber


Practical pre-school childcare magazine papercut illustrations Isobel Barber 'I love shiny things'

Cawston Press Radiant Roots

Jolly excited to share a new project I’ve been working on with you! Cawston Press make the scrummiest fruit and vegetable pressed juices using only natural ingredients. If you haven’t tried them yet… you need to! You can find them here. Here’s a fabulously fruity papercut illustration I made! 🙂

isobel barber cawston press illustration

Thanks for stopping by x

New custom monogram prints!

I am very excited to announce that my custom monogram strawberry wreath prints are now available from my Etsy shop! It’s very simple to order one, you just leave a ‘note to buyer’ at the checkout stating the initial you wish to receive, and your customised made-to-order print will be on it’s way to you in 1-2 working days! I was thinking they might make a great custom gift for a new baby to go in a nursery?! I’m currently snipping up some more wreath designs and would love to hear your thoughts on other fruity or flowery themes you’d like to see!…

Isobel Barber


Isobel Barber



Have a wonderful day x

My papercut headdress workshop at Wilderness festival!

Freshly home from a wonderful weekend at Wilderness Festival in Oxfordshire!

At the beginning of the year I was asked whether I’d be interested in running a paper-cut headdress workshop in the Wilderness Studio at the Wilderness Festival. Of course I jumped at the opportunity and have been beyond excited ever since! I had such such such a great time helping the friendly festivalers snip up some beautiful botanical head adornments and was blown away by the levels of creativity in the Wilderness Studio tent!.. Including a lady who snipped up a hat in the shape of a crows head, complete with foliage (Picture 4)! Here are a few snaps from my weekend!


Wilderness festival




Isobel Barber


Isobel Barber










IMG_20150811_143739 (1)


Wilderness festival



Thanks for stopping by x