Robert Barnes was a painter as well as an illustrator for magazines. He worked at Sydney Cottage and Gossom’s Lodge, before moving to Elmside, Redhill in 1876.
Between the years of 1876 and 1883 he produced a series of ten paintings which were then shown at the Royal Academy. He was elected Associate of the Royal Watercolour Society in 1876 while providing images to many notable magazines. In 1888 his works were exhibited in Vienna at l’Exposition Internationale.
Barnes is most remembered for his series for the magazine The Graphic of The Mayor of Casterbridge. He died in 1893 in Brighton England.