Isen Workshop is a start up based in South London run by Caren Hartley of Hartley Cycles and Matthew McDonough of Talbot Frameworks, each highly respected bespoke steel bicycle frame builders they began a joint venture in Isen Workshop. Their aim, to bring batch production of bicycle frames back to the UK and offer the quality of a bespoke steel frame at a more affordable price point. Joining the company in its infancy provided me with the ability to become fully involved in the building of a network and discourse between existing and potential customers along with the suppliers and industry contacts needed to create an economically viable business.

Whilst working at Isen Workshop my time was split mainly between design focused projects, building the bicycle frames and liaising with customers and suppliers.

To build a steel bicycle is no easy feat, it requires practice, precision and a keen eye for detail especially to be on par with the products Caren and Matt were already offering though their existing businesses.

Working with this pair proved both challenging and rewarding. In their own businesses; their approach, the customer interaction and marketing varied dramatically, Hartley Cycles offers a high class craft orientated approach originating in Caren’s previous work as a jeweller and artist. Whilst Talbot Frameworks uses a much more tongue in cheek twist in their products. Combining these two aspects helped develop Isen Workshop's brand identity, a serious company delivering high quality products whilst never fearing to poke fun at the cycling industry, pop culture and itself.

Isen came with an almost clear slate as far as brand identity was concerned besides three key features; a logo also used as the head badge on every frame, the Century Gothic typeface and a strong use of black.

During my time at the company I cultivated a strong brand image across photographic style, advertisements, social media presence a complete brand lookbook and coherent website and store easily maintainable by future staff members through Squarespace.

Along side working for the Isen Workshop brand I was also tasked maintaining the Hartley Cycles image across social media and their website including product photography and articulating each custom built frame that left the workshop via their website.

My work on the Isen Workshop website can be viewed via

3D, making and physical problem solving skills have always been of great personal interest, bikes are my biggest passion in life and I have worked in the bicycle industry since the age of 16. It was therefore a great privilege to spend over a year working at a pinnacle of the cycling world. During my time at the company I was a frame builder involved in the creation of over 50 frames, each with a whole lot of my own personal energy preserved beneath the paint work.