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Polar Exploration-Inspired Art by Sarah Barnard


SVB takes on Norway, joins Polar Bear Club

I went to Northern Norway for my birthday! It's a trip I've wanted to take for a long time, so my birthday seemed like a good excuse.

I took the Nordland night train from Trondheim to Bodø, and then a ship up to Hammerfest to join the Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society. Then I headed back along the coast to Tromsø to visit Polarmuseet. A fantastic trip all round!

First Polar Artists Collective

Exhibition Now Open!

Our first virtual exhibition is now available to view online until the 7th June! There are some absolutely fantastic artists involved and I'm so pleased that we've managed to put together such a great showcase of work!

You can view the exhibtion on any device using this linktree: https://linktr.ee/polarartcollective.


New artists collective!

In January 2024 I set up the brand new Polar Artists Collective! We are a community of (currently) almost 50 artists, all making art with a polar connection.

I've been so overwhelmed by how many different artists have joined my new collective - we've managed to cover mediums from oil painting to embroidery, heritage photography to crochet, sound art to cyanotype printing, and many more. I'm so excited to see how we all interpret the polar regions, their history, and their animal residents in our different ways.

You can follow the collective on Instagram at @polarartcollective and on Twitter/X at @polarartcoll.

It's that time of year...!

My shop is open for all polar arty purchases - and I've streamlined it so hopefully everything should be easier to find! Now, rather than each print size being listed seperately, all sizes are available in a drop down menu on each listing.

I'll be away from the 20th to the 27th December, so if you'd like to order anything for Christmas please get your order in by the 18th.

In terms of other news, I have a couple of projects in the works, which I'm hoping I'll be able to exhibit by the end of 2024. They'll involve trips to a few different polar museums which I'm very excited about, and who knows, maybe I'll get to Antarctica!

new work, concepts and experiments

I've been thinking recently about why I love the polar regions so much, and I've realised that a large part of it is because of the lack of stimulus (outwith the towns and cities of course). They are so quiet, the air is so fresh and there isnt much smell. A lot of the land is covered in snow much of the time so there is very little visual noise. My brain is very sensitive to stimulus, I can't tune out a lot of it like most people can, so the experience of such a low stimulus environment for me is like a wonderful holiday! I'm planning to complete a series of abstract works on this theme, hopefully helped along by returning to the Arctic once again.


A small selection of cyanotypes are now available in my shop!

Polar Portraiture+ at Discovery Point!

My exhibition 'Out of Sight // Out of Mind' is now on at Discovery Point's Hut Point cafe! We had a great little opening party and I'm really pleased with how the exhibition has turned out. Alongside the pencil portraits of polar people (PPPP), I decided to show some small cyanotypes and watercolours. I only started making cyanotypes a couple of weeks before the exhibition opened so it's been quite a steep learning curve, but I'm so happy to be able to use some of my photos from the Arctic Circle residency, and I think they look fantastic. I'm hoping to get a few more pictures of the exhibition over the next couple of months, but for now I just have these!

More cyanotypes will be added to my shop over the next couple of weeks - I have to wait for the sun to come out to develop them, and the weather here in Scotland is temperamental at best!

Please note that the delivery of Christmas orders may be affected by Royal Mail strike action.

This strike action will impact the collection, sorting and delivery of parcels in the UK (and delivery overseas). I am doing my best to get all orders in the post as quickly as possible, but please remember that once posted, delivery time is out of my hands.

I recommend selecting 'International Tracked Shipping' at check out for all international orders - standard shipping does not include tracking, so once your order is posted I am unable to find out where it is.

Royal Mail Strike Action

The Arctic Circle Expedition Residency


I haven't posted any updates since April, but that doesn't mean I haven't been doing anything!

I have just over a month before I set off on the Arctic Circle Residency - I'll be heading to Oslo and then up to Longyearbyen, Svalbard, where I'll set sail aboard the good ship Antigua for a couple of weeks sailing around the coast. I'm looking forward to drawing and painting from life, taking a ridiculous number of photographs, and hopefully meeting some interesting people!

Shackleton Polar Skills Challenge

On the 20th March 2022, I headed out to Finse, Norway to take part in the Shackleton Polar Skills Challenge! It was one of the absolute best experiences of my life, so much fun, and I'm so pleased I took the plunge and did it!

A bit of background: Finse is a mountain village situated at 1222 metres above sea level, and accessible only by train/ski in winter. It was the training ground of Shackleton, Scott and Amundsen for their expeditions, and there is a great replica of Amundsen's Framheim hut at the Finse 1222 hotel, where our group of six stayed for the challenge. We were trained by Louis Rudd (Director of Expeditions, super polar explorer, his book Endurance is very good) and Wendy Searle (Expeditions Manager, polar explorer and absolute hero), they were a dream team and so helpful and understanding. We knew that we were in the best possible hands for this kind of trip.

Since I booked with a whole one week's notice, I hadn't done any training whatsoever, but I was still able to get stuck into most of the activities despite some protests from my hip, feet, shoulders, neck, lungs, ... entire body. I went in having absolutely no skiing experience and left having absolutely some skiing experience (actually quite a lot), which was exactly what I'd hoped for! I wanted to experience pulling a pulk and using polar expedition equipment, and I can't imagine any way to do that that would have been better than this challenge. I left feeling confident that I knew what goes into daily expedition life, what can go wrong and why, how much I personally need to join a gym, and when I should've seen Wendy about my blisters but didn't because I am a dingus.


If you'd like to find out more about Shackleton Challenges, check out the website here

Explorers Club + Cabal Rum on board the HQS Wellington

A fantastic time was had by all on the evening of the 27th November, on board the HQS Wellington in London, celebrating the launch of the Explorers Club Great Britain & Ireland Chapter + Cabal special edition Polar Ice rum!

I was especially honoured to be presented with the Explorers Club Chapter coin by chapter chairman Mark Wood, which was completely unexpected and I still can't believe it!

Guest speakers included polar explorer Felicity Aston MBE, adventurer James Ketchell, Craig Mathieson and Iona Somerville of the Polar Academy, NASA engineer Michael Perry, and guest of honour Alexandra Shackleton.


Mugs and water bottles featuring my illustrations are now available in my Etsy shop!

Please note mugs and water bottles are dispatched from a printing company so will arrive separately to playing cards or prints.


SVB + The Explorers Club

The Explorers Club UK & Ireland Chapter and Cabal Rum have teamed up to make a very exclusive rum! My illustrations will feature on the bottle.

This special edition rum will be launched on the 27th November 2021 aboard HQS Wellington in London!

Playing Cards are Available Now!

Find them in my online store


Out of Sight, Out of Mind

I've just got the go ahead from the wonderful 2041 Foundation to start work on my new exhibition project, 'Out of Sight, Out of Mind' in aid of the foundation!

This project will consist of portraits of polar explorers, educators and scientists as representatives of Antarctica and messengers of climate change. 

The exhibition will be shown at Discovery Point in Dundee in 2022, and I'll be putting together a virtual exhibition as well which will be available to view on this very website.

As with many projects, cooperation is key, and I'll be contacting my polar faves over the next couple of weeks (jury service permitting), I'll be keeping my fingers crossed that a few of them will be up for supporting the project!

One tree planted for each print order

From now onwards I'll be planting one tree for each print order! I'll be using Treeapp - check them out if you'd like to find out more.

You can also use the app to plant a tree for free every day!

palm trees covered with fog
palm trees covered with fog


Thanks to complications arising from the UK's exit from the European Union, the cost of insured delivery to EU countries has increased by around 400% in some cases(!) 

This means that I am forced to either post orders uninsured, or add extra postage costs. If you would prefer insured delivery for prints or commissions please do let me know - for commissions I will try to quote for insured postage along with the cost of the artwork.

New work!

These drawings are available as prints in my shop

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