Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Autumn in West Virginia

"Leaves are falling all around, it's time I was on my way. Thanks to you, I'm much obliged for such a pleasant stay. But now it's time for me to go, the autumn moon lights my way." (Ramble On, Led Zeppelin)

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 42/52

Leopard ball has been a long time friend of Murphy's. He's very careful with the toys he likes. All the other ones end up de-stuffed and destroyed!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Illustrated: Learning Calligraphy























A couple weekends ago I spent the afternoon at Amelie's French Bakery learning calligraphy from Kyle, the owner of Olde York Station. I was surprised at how meditative calligraphy is; it seems one could spend hours perfecting intricate thick and thin strokes (it's all about the pressure). It's also very gratifying to create that perfect loop or curvy tail. The calligraphy pen whisks me back in time and it feels like I should be writing next to Thomas Jefferson. A whole new graphic world has opened up to me and I'm excited to develop my own calligraphy style! Apparently, the adage "practice makes perfect" is key to this art. Kyle is a very patient and encouraging teacher; she rewarded our hard work with pastries and coffee...can't beat that!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Zion National Park (Part III): Landscapes

Zion National Park in Springdale, Utah is usually sunny and hot, dry, and painted against the backdrop of beautiful blue skies. One morning I woke to dark skies and rumbles of thunder in the distance. I snuggled deep under the warm covers and fell back asleep to the gentle patter of rain on the roof. A while later I jerked awake, startled by the biggest crack of thunder I've ever heard. My first storm in Zion was magnificent. Thick sheets of rain and fog rolled into the valley until the mountains were no longer visible. Each roll of thunder echoed off the mountain walls. The Virgin River, which was pristine and clear the day before when we went wading, was raging with muddy rapids that resembled chocolate milk. It was beautiful to experience a storm in Zion. [Part I; Part II].

Monday, October 6, 2014

Zion National Park (Part II)

Zion National Park is a majestic and humbling place. Massive red rock mountains stand proud against the sky, seeming to know something we don't. A silence permeates the valley between them; a welcome, calming silence. At night, the mountains are silhouettes and become background to the most beautiful starry sky I have ever seen. Due to elevation and extreme darkness, on a clear night, shooting stars and even edges of the Milky Way are visible. My close friend is a Park Ranger in Zion and she led me on some beautiful hikes, took me on a search for tortoises, and waded with me in the frigid Virgin River. It's hard not to feel in tune with nature in Zion. It's hard not to feel small and insignificant (in a good way). It's hard not to feel that the world and the universe are so much bigger than we can ever realize. I find comfort in that.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 40/52

While I was out West last week Murphy stayed with my mom and grandmother. He loves being at mom's house! She has a doggie door, big yard, and the two cutest Westies (Baby and Turner). I didn't see Murphy for eight days and I missed the little guy something fierce. In addition to daily walks and plenty of attention, my grandmother was kind enough to send me regular pupdates and photos. Today I'm featuring her as a guest photographer for The Murphy Chronicles. Thanks Mammol!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Zion National Park (Part I)

This has been my view for the past five days. Zion National Park is beyond beautiful. It's almost impossible to capture the magnificence of the mountains in a photo, but I tried my best. I'll be back with more photos soon. Cheers! 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 39/52

The air is getting cooler and the lake is finally crisp and refreshing again. Fall is most definitely on the horizon. Murphy and I have been savoring every spare moment we have down by the water. He seems so content there and I love spending the afternoon gazing out over the water with him.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Illustrated: The Fruit Mawn-Stuhs

All my friends are turning 32 this year! Here's another "32" inspired birthday card illustration. Which fruit mawn-stuh is your favorite?

Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 38/52

Murphy and I were honored to be photographed by the incredibly talented Kelly from Grace Hill Photography. We've never had official pics taken together since I'm always the one behind the camera. It was a bit strange at first, but having my best buddy along helped calm my nerves. Murphy was a great sport and let me squeeze, kiss, and pose him in all kinds of ways!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Illustrated: Welcome Home

I illustrated this card for a couple friends who just purchased their first home. I chose the colors that spoke to me on that particular day and just love the patriotic flair that ended up shining through.  On the back of the envelope I wrote the lyrics to CSNY, Our House (is a very, very fine house). There was also a little monster inside saying hello!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles Special Edition: Tongue Action (37/52)

Murphy and I spent a lovely and lazy Sunday by the lake. He ate treats and duck poop while I read and attempted to sketch a portrait of him. I managed to catch some seriously impressive tongue photos. This dog could have been in Kiss!