28 December 2006

Merry Mulling, 2006!

I hope everyone has a wonderful end to their 2006 year. What a ride. Although not as awesome as 2005, I'm ready to move onto 2007! Health, Happiness, and Hope for everyone!
Here's a nice recipe for all to enjoy:
Mulled Wine
The word "mulled" simply means heated and spiced, similar to the German Glühwein (glowing wine), the French vin chaud (hot wine) and the Italian vin brulé. In medieval times these wines were called Ypocras or Hipocris, named after the physician Hippocrates. They were thought to be very healthy, and indeed, with wine at the time being far more sanitary than water, these heated drinks probably did keep people healthy through the cold winters.

2/3 cup sugar
1 750ml bottle wine (a decent merlot)
1/2 cup brandy
6 to 8 cloves
1 cinnamon stick
orange peel from 1/2 orange

1: Pour the wine into a nonreactive saucepan and place over low heat.
2: Cut the zest off half an orange with a sharp paring knife or vegetable peeler so that only the orange part is removed. If some of the bitter white pith is still attached to the zest, cut it off and discard it.
3: Lightly pound the pieces of zest with the back of a knife or a mallet to release the aromatic oils. Add the zest to the wine. Squeeze some juice in, too.
4: Add the remaining ingredients.
5: Stir occasionally. Do not let the wine come to a boil.
6: When the wine begins to steam and is very hot, it is ready to serve.
7: Shut off the heat and ladle the wine out into mugs or glasses, leaving the seasonings behind.

23 December 2006

Lawn Dandruff Night 2006

A fun night had by all, riding around with good company, warm spirits, and a smattering of Kenny G. Lawn Dandruff Night will now be a yearly tradition. Some of my favorite decoration included marshmallow roasting penguin and snowman, Santa on a chopper, and the weirdo santabear peeping tom. And! On a good note, we didn't get shot at or attacked by dogs!

19 December 2006

Illustration Friday: Help

I am notorious for putting on my mittens before zipping up my jacket, then searching for help. You need to do that because it ensures minimal wrist exposure! Chilly!

14 December 2006


I've been tagged by Sweet Pea! I'm not quite to sure what this means, but I feel a bit like a Texas Steer. I'll try not to moo too much.

4 jobs I have had:
  • Part-time Faculty at the Montserrat College of Art. Just wrapped up the beginning of my forth year there, and I am so lucky to have met the students I have over the years. *awww*
  • Gallery Monitor during my college years. That was the best damn job ever. They actually pay you for that.
  • Strawberries! Movies, Music, and More... How may I help you?
  • Lead Paint Scraper. Now, I was a college student, in desperate need of money. But with the huge dilemma of needing a good tan in the summer. And I have to admit, the tan was rocking that year. Bloodstream.... not so good.

4 movies I could (and have) watch over and over:

  • Amelie
  • Glory
  • Sense and Sensibility
  • Tombstone
  • I have soooo many more though...

4 places I have lived (apart from where I am now):

  • Ok, I'm sheltered!
  • Kellycrazyland
  • Rhode Island (very similar to Kellycrazyland though)
  • Paris in less than a month!

4 TV shows I love (lord, this will be embarrassing):

  • Masterpiece Theater/PBS
  • Most Extreme Challenge
  • Anything of TLC, Bravo (Ooh! I miss cable! Project Runway), Nat'l Geo Channel, Animal Planet...
  • Bachelor, Laguna Beach, Flavor of Love, RR/RW Challenges (ok, I will stop)

4 places I have been for a vacation:

  • Civil War Battlefields, with my parents when I was younger. LOVED IT.
  • Ireland
  • Drove across the US in eight days with a great friend and saw every Waffle House you can shake a bowl of grits at.
  • Oooooh, Brussels! All about the Atomium, friends. Make sure to see it when sleep deprived. Much funnier.

4 websites I visit daily (more dorkiness!):

4 favorite foods:

  • Instant potatoes
  • Candy (Skittles, Circus Peanuts, Swedish Fish, Hairbo's I can't get here)
  • Bread
  • Salt and Vinegar chips... oh hell, any chips.

4 places I would rather be:

  • In bed
  • 4 years ago, before I hurt my knee... skiing and skating with glee.
  • By my mum's pool, on the lounge chair with cat Clancy and Lils on the other chair. Note the subtle humm of Cicadas. HEAVEN.
  • Back in school, with all my friends.
Now, I think I am supposed to hog tie, I mean tag four other people. FOUR... hmmm, the mystical number it is. Trrrricky devil, number four.

Linda S. Wingerter

13 December 2006

If Only I Was a Claudette

I just had to share this. I'm part horrified, part JAZZED that I am spending time in a country who's produced wonders such as Claude François. Is it just me, or are they crumpin'? Le telephooooone pleure!

11 December 2006


This past weekend was a festive one indeed. A chance to get out of the studio, and participate in some holiday cheer! I have to admit! Iwas really jazzed by some of the costumes. I saw a Bob Cratchett, a Mardi Gras Santa, all 9, 11 or whatever amount of reindeer there are, and an Elvis! The best part was just being goofy with my core Santa's and handing out candy canes to all who would accept them. But, as luck would have it, in a wild pantomiming session, Santamime tweaked her already injured knee. Honestly, there were no spirits involved in these actions (ok, not enough spirits to warrant it as a "drunk" fall). The right leg is back to being braced, the girl is hobbling, and honestly praying she didn't tear a miniscus or anything else in that god forsaken joint. Next year...? NO skipping and hopping for Ms. Gimpy Knee.

06 December 2006

I Heart DPI Magazine

Awhile ago I was contacted by Lulu Tzeng from DPI magazine, asking me to feature some of my illustrations in their design magazine. Today, my copies were in the mailbox! I could not have worked with a more amazing editor and design team. Although I know NO taiwanese, I can tell from the content and calliber of people working there, it's an amazing magazine. And as they say, "every designer has PC or MAC ,and a dpi magazine!" For my own benefit, I will add that everyone have a Taiwanese dictionary too!

05 December 2006

Dragons and Draggin'!

We had our first snow of the season, here... finally! And although the transition from unusually mild weather to bitterly cold temperatures was quick, it's a welcome one for me! I'm happier with eight layers on. Typically, the holiday season for me is insane and this year prooves it true once again. But I feel as though I finally have my projects under control. I am painting finishes for Brand New Baby Blues, starting another crazy big project for a toy company, sketching out the third season poster for Shakespeare on the Sound, and getting approval on my ninth picture book Hush Little Dragon, by Boni Ashburn. Below are a few of the spreads. I am actually really excited to start painting these. The color palette will be very reminiscent of the medieval manuscripts, with rich golds, pinks, and blues.

03 December 2006


Sometimes it's the smallest of words that keep you going. I was re-assembling my workspace and looking through some old books in my abode and came across a message from Antoine Revoy from YEARS ago. Seeing this again made me smile and made me want to work for another 5 hours tonight. Thanks Rhat!

02 December 2006

Illustration Friday: Might

The little trollkin was mighty.... mighty!

Brand New Book

I have started painting for the next picturebook entitled Brand New Baby Blues written by Kathi Appelt. I'm sort of excited because I am using more and more oils in my finishes. I feel it creates a softer glow to my pieces, which is something I'd often fight with when using the watercolor. But after painting number eleven, I am sure I will be just as angry with the oil as I am with the watercolor. The name of the game!

28 November 2006

Lily and My Neice

These were too cute not to share. Yah, Lily harassed her all day for Kix.

26 November 2006

Illustration Friday: Invention

It's Saturday night... I really didn't feel like working on my continuous projects, so I decided to take a break and try something new. The message in this piece might be a bit lost, but I was kind of excited to use pink this time. I was thinking of all these modern inventions that bring us closer together, but distance us so much more. Instead of feeling flesh and sharing conversation, we sometimes prefer taking a look through pictures or a listen to sound waves over a phone. Ok... I have had wine tonight, but not that much! Seriously, think about it. My brother and some friends used to have weekends in New Hampshire together where we would turn off all lights, tele, phones and force ourselves to have Puritan night. Some of my best memories still are those nights where we shared company and conversation without any texting, photos, blogs, internet, phones, anything... I often miss New Hampshire.

20 November 2006

Glug Glug Brugs!

Ok, so you really pronounce it broozh but I needed a clever rhyme. I sampled this tasty brew this past September in Paris. And you guessed it, another Witbier. I am in love with them. Or I am in love with those magical beer chemist Belgians... As I was starting my research for this review, I kept typing B-R-U-G-E-S, and only information about the city was presenting itself. Turns out, I wasn't so far off, with it's close ties to that very city. This witbier, small in bottle stature, was monstrous with flavor and ease, which is why I am spotlighting it today!

Brugs is a white beer from Western Flanders, based on a traditional Brabant brew. The name comes the Flemish "Brugs Tarwebier", which means "White beer of Bruges". Brugs was first brewed by Jan Hugheins in 1455 in Bruges, Belgium's answer to Venice. The city consists of 40 bridges over the canals, very reminiscent of that certain Italian city. Every bottle of Brugs bears the "golden tree", harking back to the trophy traditionally awarded to the knights that won the tournaments held in the city back in the Middle Ages. How rad, huh? I found this snippet about the tournaments:

In July 1468, Margaret of York, sister to King Edward IV of England, was married to Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy. This great dynastic marriage was marked by processions, pageants and banquets, so magnificent that contemporaries marveled at the wealth and splendour of the Burgundian court. The highlight of the celebrations was undoubtedly the tournament - the Pas d armes de l Arbre d Or (tournament of the Golden Tree) - held in the Market Place at Bruges in the shadow of the famous tower of the Market Hall.
Anthony, Count de la Roche - 'Grand Bastard of Burgundy' - undertook to defend the golden tree against a succession of challengers for eight days, jousting against each one for half an hour, with the winner being the knight to break the most lances in the prescribed time.

Someone tell me please, why is this spectical isn't performed at weddings anymore? It would sure beat seeing old aunts pop hips out to "YMCA". Apparently, in Bruges they've made a pageant around the historical event, one that I might HAVE to go to in 2007. It looks amazing.

The beer is pale yellow, slightly cloudy beer with a refreshing tartness. It's made from wheat and hops and is seasoned with bitter orange and coriander. It's is unfiltered, as with all beers on lees (yeast), which allows it to keep the natural cloudiness given by that very yeast. Often served with a slice of lemon as all my deliscious witbiers, Brugs has very low bitterness and a dense, creamy head. But the main reason why I decided to feature the beer is because on their packaging, they give you coupons to buy MORE Brugs! Now, call me a boozebag, but I think that's just amazing and courteous. One might even say.... chivalrous!

Santé or Op uw gezondheid!

16 November 2006

November 30th, Foster Gallery

Hello all,
I hope this message finds you well and ready for another winter season! I know I am, eating 5 cookies for every 1 pile of leaves raked. I also wanted to give everyone a heads up about an upcoming illustration show. Here's the details!

Illustration, Strange Turns of the Mind's Road
November 27, 2006 - January 5th, 2006

Where: Foster Gallery
Noble and Greenough School
10 Campus Drive
Dedham, MA 02026

When: November 30th, 2006, 4-6pm

Who: Fellow illustrators Ann P. Smith, Peter Reynolds, Paul Olson, Fred Lynch, Grace Lin, and Jarrett J. Krosoczka. Picture book artists will be present to sign books as well.

Why: Because everyone loves an illustration show!

What: You heard me... illustration that will rock your tohkes off!

For directions to the gallery and daily gallery hours, please visit
www.fostergallery.org A portion of all proceeds from the sale of artwork will benefit the AIDS Charity Art Sale at Noble and Greenough. Six of my pieces will be up for sale, so act fast!! Thanks so much for taking a read through, and hopefully we can see you at the opening!

ps) There sooo will be a new beer review in the next day or two. Priorities!!!

09 November 2006

I Never Learn

Today was spent framing, again. Why do I always 1.) leave it to the last minute and 2.) somehow manage to do it slower than last time. These six pieces will be in the Foster Gallery in MA this coming winter. But for serious. Every time I go to frame artwork for a show, I vow that I will streamline the whole process the next time. NOPE! I never learn. It takes me longer and longer each time. Anyone out there want to be an intern, specifically on the day I have to frame?

Now, things are complicated when you have a jerkhead cat who wants to sit ontop of everything you need to use. Where's that illustration?

Oh, under the cat. Now where the heck did I put the pencil?

DAMN CAT! And the best is when paw prints are left all over a nice clean piece of matt board.

Ugh. So. I'm now finished. I'll post details of the upcoming show in a week or two. It will be a lot of fun. It include friends Fred Lynch, Ann Smith, Paul Olson, Jarrett Krosoczka, Grace LIn, and Peter Reynolds. But hopefully I can see you guys there and we can discuss the sublime beauty of eight hours of framing can bring. Either that or adoption of the aforementioned cat. Kidding. Well, maybe not.

06 November 2006

Fiona Bound

A pleasant surprise on my doorstep came today, along with the night fall of ginko leaves. My first bound copy of Fiona's Luck! I feel like I only just finished painting.

Diary of a Wanna-be Good Painting

No comment.

04 November 2006

Illustration Friday: Smoke

Because of the current workload, I haven't been able to bust out something new, so I've been digging through some old portfolio boxes. Typically, I cringe showing older work, but I think to have that attitude about older work is not the way to go. Sometimes revisiting ideas or techniques that lead you to certain place forces you back into that midset when you were more experimental. For me, I guess I sometimes enjoy the looser brush stroke on my older pieces.

01 November 2006

Illustration Friday: Wind

This painting is from years ago, in fact when I was still in school. I know... another horse. But for some reason I always kept this painting. Maybe it was the wind that bumped the rider over, or maybe Mr. Two Red Stripes himself. Hey! Red Stripe! A beer referrence!

31 October 2006

Make me a Chimp of the Month!

Wow! I am so excited! I was nominated as a potential chimp of the month. Now, typically I think this is an insult, but with me perfecting the wide teeth grins, progressive swaying back and forth, and violent headshaking these past few years... this is my one and only shot for true recognition. So please, instead of feeding me cigarettes, go ahead and click this link, and vote for me as your favorite chimp. If you do, I promise not to throw feces at you. Word!

The Little Chimp Society

30 October 2006

Oh Puzzles!

I swear... this is the LAST horse painting. Next up is a SEVERE concentration on my book projects and more beer reviews. My priorites have been far out of whack... by horses.

My Pet Project Launched

Hello everyone. Just dropping another note letting you know that my piece for The Pet Project is officially up on eBay now! Please drop by, make a bid, pass it on to anyone you might think interested. The proceeds from the auction will go to the Rhode Island SPCA, which will in turn help thousands of homeless animals during this fast approaching winter. Recently, I have become involved with the RISPCA through fostering, and I hope in turn your bid can help them further facilitate placing wonderful animals with new families. Thanks so much for taking the time to check this message out, and hopefully making a bid on my original art!

Click HERE to see the bid!

Click HERE to learn more about the RISPCA

24 October 2006

New Moon Cover

One more project off the dry erase board of fun. Ok, you're right. I never look at that damn board.

22 October 2006

Illustration Friday: Ghost

I have two images this week. One a bit older than the other. Both heavy with memories. Who doesn't have ghosts? If there is one thing kelmurphy has... it's ghosts.

17 October 2006

Illustration Friday: Smitten

16 October 2006

Loony Little in Paperback

Well what do you know! My first paperback! Loony Little (Candlewick Press), written by Diana Hutts Aston is on the schedule for fall 2007 for the paperback titles. I'm not entirely sure what all of it entails, but it sounds cool! It's my first time.

12 October 2006

Curious City and a Radio Interview

This weekend, I will be in Maine with my friends from Curious City, presenting my book, Good Babies. If you are in the area, please come by and visit Space Gallery in Portland at 11am. I can't wait to make some mean looking troll masks.

And also this Saturday morning from 8 to 9am, tune into WMPG for my radio interview on Chickens R People 2, with Kelsey and Beate. We'll be chatting about Good Babies, My Pet Project, and basic inspiration for picture making.

I'm a NERD!

I knew it! Man, D&D came back to haunt me BAD! I knew I was a bit nerdy, but 46%? I now understand my high school years where I DID have an action figure collection. I was talking with Tracers the other day about the Weird Al song White and Nerdy, and come to think of it, mentioning Weird Al as excitedly as I did made me more nerdy. Oh well... maybe I can somehow use it as an excuse for things.

"Kel, why didn't you come to the party last night?"
"Sorry dude, I'm 46% nerdy. You understand, right?"
"What the hell are you talking about? You're just lame!"

Now it's time for you to take the quiz.

11 October 2006

Illustration Friday: Trouble

An excerpt from Dancing Matilda. She was always getting herself into trouble.

04 October 2006

Beer for KIDS!

When I started this blog, I received many comments about the idea of illustration and beer combined. Well, I give you something way more bombass. Beer for sick kids complete with cheerleaders. This is pure genius.

The Hancock Street Pub Crawl is taking place in the Metro Boston area. No crawl goes further. Hancock Street Pub Crawl is a fundraiser for the Little Hearts organization, a group that helps kids with congenital heart defects. In the past, they have raised over $8200 to help kids and their families deal with heart problems. Apparently, this year the New England Patriot cheerleaders are looking to get their drink on, too.

The even takes place Saturday, Oct. 28th, 2006 and starts at noon. Click here and here for more details.

Kelmurphy on Altpick

Just letting everyone know you can also find me on altpick, the source for creative talent and information. You can use the navigation to the right or simple click here!

02 October 2006

Illustration Friday: Quiet

Another airplane sketch. The quiet mischief of those trixy rabbits. The words are Björk's.

29 September 2006

More Ducks!

I'm starting to feel like I am getting sloppier and sloppier. Soupir. Maybe it's just the constant eye twitch.