The Art Of Pop Up Books & Robert Sabuda

February 17, 2016

By Tab Byrum

I was recently in the car running errands and was listening to talk radio, on this day I was listening to the Entertainment Weekly satellite channel and I caught a segment of their show Off The Books where they interviewed Robert Sabuda. Sabuda has become famous for the beautiful pop-up books he creates, he has taken famous stories we’ve heard or read time and again such as Alice in Wonderland, The Wizard Of Oz, and The Night Before Christmas and given them new life.


Sabuda’s creations are elaborate and colorful which is illustrated in examples like his recreation of the Emerald City, the flying cards in Alice or the lion that jumps off the page in the Chronicles of Narnia. In the radio interview, Sabuda said that his editor had recently said that “Robert Sabuda uses an Exacto knife the way other illustrators use a pencil”, I think that’s an amazing compliment and very true, his design and execution of it is flawless. When I was in retail I alway kept Sabuda’s books in the store, they were great children’s gifts all year long and I always sold out at Christmas. If you’ve never seen his work check out the pics I’m sharing today and then look him up on Amazon or the next time you’re in a bookstore, you won’t be sorry. Enjoy!!!


One thing I like is how Sabuda uses the characters as they were originally illustrated when the books were published. 


Here’s Sabuda’s version of the Emerald City.



Most people remember this scene from Sabuda’s Alice In Wonderland. Imagine what it took to conceive and execute the design of those flying cards in a book. 


Sabuda’s take on the french classic Beauty & The Beast is beautiful. 


Sabuda’s Christmas creations are something you will definitely hold onto for many years to come. 


A look at Sabuda’s creation of the underwater world in The Little Mermaid.


I think C.S. Lewis would be very impressed with the pop-up illustrations created for his classic story The Chronicles of Narnia by Robert Sabuda, both above and below. 



Illustrator/Artist Robert Sabuda surrounded by some of his beautiful creations.

Sabuda has a new book coming out called The White House : A Pop-Up of Our Nation’s Home.

The words are my own
Images are courtesy of

By on .


Leave a Comment

Design by Ana Degenaar + Development by Brandi Bernoskie + Logo by Kelly Beall