25 December 2011

Lighted Lawn Dandruff 2011!!

Our annual Holiday festivities proved to be successful again this year! We noticed a rise in wicker animals and a decrease in inflatable snow globes. This year, the cold cold lights of the LEDs shone brightly over Little Rhodey, showing that us US Americans are indeed, trying to save money on energy consumption. A mid-nugget adventure, capped by a delicious shot served by our friend Holly fueled our fire and thirst to find the best of the lighted lawn dandruff this year. Can't wait for next year!

And as always, flasks up! Pants DOWN!

19 December 2011

2011 Fall Painting Demo

Demo finished!

18 December 2011

Old House, New Studio

So, about a month or so ago, we rearranged the top floor (it's basically a finished attic with slanted roofs). We moved the desks into the room with a wonderful skylight, making it a pleasure to wake and start working in the morning, I am looking forward to spending more time here this winter finishing two picturebooks!

16 December 2011

Duncan and Tucker

Two regal dogs... in need of some artwork. How can you NOT want to paint these lovely beasts!

Hard Stares and Thin Beams

School's out! No more students dirty looks!! ;)
So here are a few scans of some recent works. MORE ON THE WAY!!!

26 November 2011

New York Times Notable Book of 2011

To add to the amazing news that I've been receiving this week, The New York Times announced their Best of 2011 lists as well. Secrets At Sea received a Notable Book of 2011 for Middle Grade. I could not be happier for Richard Peck, who wrote a fun, engrossing tale of determination and loyalty.


Kirkus Best of 2011

I am ecstatic this past week. Kirkus announced its Best of List for 2011, and Secrets At Sea made a lot of them!

Best of 2011 Fantasy & Science Fiction
Best of 2011 Books for Animal Lovers
Best of 2011 Graphic Novels & Illustrated Chapter Books
Best of 2011 Novels with Great Girl Characters
Best of 2011 Exploring the Past
Best of 2011 Books to Make You Laugh
Best of 2011 Adrenaline Rushes
Best of 2011 Fiction
Best Children's Books of 2011

I was so excited when news of this came through the grapevine! 2011 should have been the year of the mouse!

Risk! A Sure Fire Way For Family Arguments

This year's RISK! battle only produced a few shouted cuss words.
Peach and tranquility was achieved world wide by Kelly's pony and kitten loving regiments.

Antoine's last red regiment was enslaved in the Glitter Sparkle Mines off the coast of Madagascar.

16 November 2011

Round 2: Jane Au-some

I guess I am getting into this character design stuff a bit more than I should. But I had the idea for a Jane Austen girl... but named Jane Au-some. Not too sure if it either reads as someone from that time era, or the name itself tells you who she is. Either way, fun to pick up watercolors and swear at them for an hour or so. Such a tricky medium!

10 November 2011

Hot Shot

So, fun things are happening this semester at Montserrat College of Art. Antoine Revoy and I are hositng a battle of characters between our classes. It's been fun seeing the students come up with ideas ranging from the absurd to genius. After finishing the last chapter book today, I leaped at the opportunity to join the creativity. Here's my round girl for the big battle!

I'm having a bit of fun messing around with digital color.
And when match time comes, my lady Hot Shot here can yell, "TO THE DEATH!!!"

03 November 2011

Illustration Friday: Scary

My submission for IF's Scary is an excerpt from my cover sketch process of Creepy Monsters Sleepy Monsters, written by Jane Yolen. Because the finished painting is so iconic after its completion, I easily forget all of the brainstorming and thumbnailing it took to get to that point. Sometimes, I look back at rejected sketches and think... that could have worked nicely. Hmmm. All of my sketches are still kept in physical form, deep inside some drawer in the studio. Although, I am thankful for organized digital files that can be quickly called up for service.

These tiny monsters are so scary... but the older of the two certainly does like to give his sibling the heebeegeebees!

ps.) You can see the book's old working title above!

26 October 2011

When projects are done...

...I may, or MAY NOT... dance like this.

Crac, boum, hu!!!!

17 October 2011

Golden Light With Kite

Late night rhyming is outlawed now, officially. Warm golds have to be one of the more satisfying colors one can use in their paintings. Good ol' Freddy Remmington is the master teacher for bold color usage, especially in landscape. I mean, good God... look at his paintings!! What an amazing teacher for me.

13 October 2011

Secrets At Sea Christened Today!

Today, Secrets At Sea is released into open waters, off to her maiden voyage! Ok, I will ease up on the sailing references. All joking aside, I am please to have this book ready for reading eyes. It's a fun, classic tale involving the secrets side of mice living with their nouveau riche humans. It was a research heavy book, but that's something I looooove to do!

I hope you also enjoy the tiny moments I found endearing in this book.

05 October 2011

Lights, Camera...

My new friends Mark Steensland, author or Behind The Bookcase, and a crew of four Penn State students came to Providence this past weekend.

03 October 2011

Kelmurphy.com V6!!!

Today, we are announcing the 6th version of my website! It's always a bit sad saying goodbye to an old design, but fortunately more work is being created thus more room is needed! I am forever in debt to the master Antoine Revoy for coding and designing a more effective way to display my work. Please, come and take a look! www.kelmurphy.com

27 September 2011

Mmmmm... Pie!

And we're just on the cusp of pie-season! YES!!! LOVE THOSE FALL FOODS!

And that warm fall light. This recent cover finish reminds me of my favorite time of day, late afternoons.

Sketches Flying Off The Desk

One of the best challenges with each project is the exhaustive sketch process when beginning a project. It's so necessary to try and solve each assignment in as many ways possible, and then narrowing it down which one "feels" closest to home. These are practical lessons for art students. When I was in school, my first illustration assignment was to draw 100 sketches for an apple. You get really creative by number twenty. Professionally, what comes after is accepting which one the publishers chooses. That's why I would suggest only showing your best ideas! You don't want to get stuck working the next three weeks on something your heart and mind is not connected with.

Ok, I'll stop the "tuity fruity" talk. Excited about this recent bookcover finish. Will show when published!

18 September 2011

Lords and Ladies

With the upcoming fall, I myself have fallen into deadline maddness! School has started again, and balancing projects and classes is once again all consuming. BUT! As time passes I can start to share more of the projects that are underway. For now, here are some character sketches of a gentler era. Was it really gentler though? Well, the dresses were prettier.

05 September 2011

Get Higher, Baby!

Kelly's Takeoff from Antoine Revoy on Vimeo.

I think I found a new hobby. I LOVE being in the sky!

Kelly's Landing from Antoine Revoy on Vimeo.

21 August 2011

Don't Look A GIft Raccoon In The Mouth

Hotdiggity, run like the wind Bandit!

18 August 2011

Falmouth Heights

Each year, for one afternoon I head down to hangout ocean-side with my brother and his wife in Falmouth, Massachusetts. It's great to get my one beach day a year... but every time I manage to cook myself to a lovely shade of flaming pink. I'm AWFUL at sunscreen application. I managed to make myself look like a calico cat, AGAIN.

Here's my view, looking south across Vinyard Sound... patiently waiting for Air Force One to arrive. We got to see the helicopters heading to Martha's Vineyard last year, but no luck this year.

17 August 2011

3x3 Children's Show No. 8

What a great week!
I received news that one of my images from Princess and The Golden Fish, published in Cricket Magazine, has received a silver award in the 3x3 Children's Show. I could not be more pleased!

The image is one of 10-13 images for a four part story, written by Eugie Foster. It's from the third installment, and called for a close up as the story's climax neared. Often, I am dreading searching for imagery online, so Photobooth is my best option. I've seen Joe Quinones' great photobooth posts on his blog, and this inspired me to add my own.

Well... you got to make due with what you got, right? More typically, the animals are photo-bombing left and right.