Isabel Bishop was born and raised in the Midwest. She came to New York in 1918 where she studied at the New York School of Applied Design for Women and the Art Students League, where her teachers included Kenneth Hayes Miller and Guy Pene du Bois. In 1934 she rented a studio in Union Square where she worked for the remainder of her career, often taking as her subjects the men and women who worked in the shops and offices on the square, or who walked or sat in Union Square Park.
She was a great draughtsman, and much of her graphic work is devoted to studies of the human figure in motion or at rest within the context of their activities in Union Square or similar settings. Bishop made etchings throughout her career, producing more than 80 prints between 1925 and 1982.
Prior to 1978 Bishop had editoned only a few of her prints; most of them were printed on an