Filmed by Timothy Gatenby 

a b o u t

Isabella Watling was born in London in 1990, and spent her formative years in the UK and Australia. From the age of 18 she trained at the Charles H. Cecil Studios in Florence where she returns periodically to teach portrait and figure painting. Isabella now lives and works in London.


Her time at the studio gave Isabella a rigorous training in sight-size portraiture, following the tradition of masters like Van Dyck, Velázquez and Sargent. In keeping with this approach, Isabella’s portraits are painted to the scale of life, under natural light and always directly from the sitter.


Most of IsaBella’s work is undertaken on commission and has seen her travel to paint in America, and around Europe. She has shown her work regularly in galleries and .exhibitions in London

Isabella’s portrait ‘The Importance of Being Glenn’ was exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery, London for the BP Portrait Award 2012.  Her full length portrait gina and Cristiano was exhibited at the Bp portrait award 2014.  

e x h i b i t i o n s

2020  The Royal Society of Portrait Painter at The Mall Galleries, London 

2018  Site Unseen, a group exhibition at Dellasposa Gallery, 2A Bathurst a Street 

2017  Society of Women Artists at The Mall Galleries, London

2017  In Pursuit of things Past group exhibition at 10 Shepherd Street, Mayfair, London

2016  Face.Time group exhibition at 90 Piccadilly, Mayfair, London, W1J 7NE

2016  The Royal Society of Portrait Painters at The Mall Galleries, London

2015  Taught a 2 day workshop at the National Portrait Gallery to coincide with the Exhibition Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends

2014  Shooting star Chase Art exhibition at The Royal College of Art, London

2014  Young Emerging Artists group exhibition at the Oil and Water Gallery London

2014  Sargent Today At Morgan Hall, Fairford

2014  BP Portrait Award at The National Portrait Gallery, London

2014  20/21 International Art Fair at The Royal College of Art, London

2014  Group Exhibition at The British Institute, Florence

2013  Shooting Star Chase Art Exhibition at The Royal College of Art, London

2012  Student Exhibition at Charles H. Cecil studios, Florence

2012  BP Portrait Award at the National Portrait Gallery, London

p r e s s