Monday, November 26, 2012

What's Up December?

Frida and Friends 5th Annual Blanket Drive and Silent Auction

For the past couple of years Jai and Blanche Tanju have held this drive to collect blankets for our furry friends at the San Jose Animal Pet Shelter.

For this year's drive they have decided to add a silent art auction at their new gallery "Seeing Things" along with the collecting blankets.  Friends and local artists have been asked to donate a pet inspired piece of art for this auction. All proceeds from the auction will be donate in need.  All bidding for art pieces will start at $10.

Please come by Saturday the 1st of December, 6pm to 10pm*.
see how inspired we are by our four legged friends. 
"Tell Me Again About the Day I was Adopted"
Murphy Adams
Seeing Things Gallery 
30 North Third Street
San Jose CA 95112


Tell Me Again About the Day I was Adopted

I'll have a little display at Heartmade with paintings, prints, ceramics, dolls and maybe some of my jewlery. 

The 11th Annual Holiday Show and Sale begins First Friday December 7th at 7pm. Over 50 artists from KALEID and the greater South Bay area will be offering original works of art and creative gifts affordably priced for the holidays!

Participating Artists:
Murphy Adams
Frank Aguilar
Jaclyn Alderete
Fernando Amaro
Shannon Amidon
Mariana Barnes
Christine Benjamin
Laura Bennett
Sandi Billingsley
Julie Bilyeu
Mike Borja
Lacey Bryant
Keith Bunnell
Nicolas Caesar
Shone Chacko
Kim Christman
Mark Damrel
Joe Decker
Charis DeRemer
Cari Ferraro
Michael Foley
Kim Gordon
Michele Guieu
Katie Gutierrez
Andre Hart
Jeff Hemming
Leah Jay
Dylan Kelly
Oscar Knutsson
Katrina Marie Loera
Drew McSherry
Joshua Marcotte
Frances Marin
Kimy Martinez
David Mejia
Mariya Milovidova
Yumi Miyagawa
John Paulson
Joe Perea
Anabella PiƱon
Al Preciado
Amine Rastgar
Steven Reece
Jen Renzel
John Renzel
Leslie Ann Rice
Blaise Rosenthal
Valerie Runningwolf
Karen Carlo Salinger
Miha Sarani
Matthew Seigel
Steven Suiter
Courtney Thiesen
Kori Thompson
Amanda Triplett
Michelle Waters
Jeanne Yee

KALEID Gallery
88 S. 4th St.  San Jose, CA
Gallery hours: Tuesday–Saturday Noon–7pm
First Fridays ’til 11pm
Free & open to the public.


at Studio Gallery San Francisco
small pieces under $400
November 8th - December 23rd, 2012

9th Anniversary Party  

Sunday, December 2nd, 2-6 pm
The work might be little, but the tiny show is huge!  We are proud to present a giant show of small work, with hundreds of pieces on display from 210 local artists.  Everything is under 7" x 7" and under $400, with loads of one-of-a-kind pieces under $200.  Are you looking for a little something for yourself, or maybe a gift for that special someone?  We've got you covered!  We'll be hanging new work every day, and the show will again include a VIP section, with some special pieces that we just couldn't resist.  A list of participating artists is below; click here to see a selection of advance photos from the show.
Holiday Hours:  Mon+Tue 12-6, Wed-Fri 11-8, Sat+Sun 11-6
STUDIO Gallery
1815 Polk Street
(between Washington and Jackson)
San Francisco, CA 94109


Monday, November 5, 2012

SJ Creatives Interview November 4, 2012

Beardos 2012

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Murphy Adams

Name:  Murphy Adams

What do you do? 
Primarily I make small, quirky paintings, but I also work in clay, mosaic and make art dolls.

Where can we find your work? 

Kaleid Gallery in San Jose, Studio Gallery in San Francisco, and a number of smaller shops, as well as my Etsy store Murphy Adams Studio .
I've also done several murals and public art projects throughout the South Bay and am currently starting a slab clay and mosaic project at Ace Charter School in East San Jose.

What inspires you to create and how do you keep motivated when things get tough?
I tend to be a bit of a hermit, hiding out in my studio at home, so when I hit a creative slump I just need to get out.  My work is about relationships, emotion, the stuff that makes us human, all squishy and pathetic and ding dang lovely at the same time, but if I don't get out and live it I've got nothing to paint.

I also get inspired when people tell me how they connect with my work, or how a specific piece seemed to be painted just for them. Again, it's tapping into emotion, and you can't do that alone, it would be boring.

What do you think is more important content/finished product or technique/process?  
Well I can't believe I'm saying  this, but the finished product. As someone who sells art, the end product is ultimately more important. Of course  experimentation and process has played a big part in developing who I am and who I continue to be as an artist. I still spend hours testing new techniques and combinations of materials.

Who are some people who influence and/or inspire you?
I love that SJ has this cool little, tight knit art community, it's very inspiring. So many artists here work really hard at surviving making art, and consistently create...friends like Christine Benjamin, Lacey Bryant and Katy Kindig  to name a few.

I'm also really into reading the Etsy Blog "Quit Your Day Job," where artists and craftspeople tell their own personal stories about how they've grown their art businesses and been able to stop working a day job...someday.

As far as influential art figures currently and through history, people like Alison Saar, Squeak Carnwath, Linda Barry, Maira Kalman, Reverend Howard Finster, Margaret Kilgallen, Joe Sorren, Jean Michel Basquiat, Mark Rothko, Frida Kahlo, Henry Darger, Jacob Lawrence... their creative expression always blows me over, makes me cry or just hits me hard across the face, in a good way.

If you could be any fictional character who would you be? Ha! Somebody kickass like Game of Thrones Khaleesi, the one with the dragon babies, Zena Warrior Princess or a Bond Girl.  If you watch Adventure Time, I'd like to be Marceline, but I'm the Lumpy Space Princess.  In other words, somebody completely opposite of my marshmallowy, goofy self.

When do you get your best ideas? Laying in bed in the morning , kind of lucid dreaming, I think about things that I've witnessed the day before, what's been said to me and what was meant by it, sometimes about the underlying meanings of things.

I  also keep a sketchbook in my bag at all times and I'll often sketch a situation that I've seen, or write down a phrase or title that gets stuck in my head. I like to listen to people, things they say when emotions run high are most interesting. I'm especially drawn to awkward and embarrassing situations, the immense power of love and hope and the sad but sometimes funny side of misfortune. Laughing inappropriately has gotten me in trouble more times than not, but it's those situations that provide substance for my paintings.

What materials/tools do you use most to create your work?
I like to start with good thick cold press watercolor paper, then I use a combination of acrylic and colored ink, sometimes some colored pencil and I love Tombow art pens.  I layer multiple jewel tone colors over colors with matte medium. I know, it looks deceivingly simple.

Are you self taught or formally educated? How do you think that has influenced or affected your work?
I started out as a fine arts major in college, but it was the 80's (I'm aging myself here) and abstract, minimal & light and space paintings were what was popular, so I wasn't taken seriously. My art wasn't art with a capitol A; I suppose it still isn't. In any case I got a degree in art history and worked as a gallery director and curator for much of my adult life. I took a few studio classes but I consider myself largely self taught. Overall I think it's influenced me in a positive way. No one got to tell me what to do or how to do it. Of course I missed out on the how to do things part and I admit that would have been helpful. However, I was able to draw my inspiration from the art that was important to me, form my own opinions and discover things outside mainstream trends. Outsider, visionary, and folk art is a big wow for me as is the bravery that children's work possesses, I would have never found that during a  traditional arts education. 

What would your creative work taste like?
Pigs in a blanket and a beer, and maybe some Hot Tamales candy for dessert. Something so bad, but really so good.

When you are not creating what do you like to do?
I sew, I'm a compulsive baker, my extraordinary husband Patrick & I raise chickens and keep bees. I like homestead-ish type stuff, we've been looking for a little farm down in the Santa Cruz/Monterey area where we can do more of that kind of stuff, and my man has promised me goats! I like taking my dogs to the beach, I love music and going to shows, I'm a word game junkie and I like TV, way more than I should. I also love hanging out with my kids Ivy & Kasten who are now 20 and 17; they're amazing, hilarious and creative beyond belief. Ivy is starting her 3rd year of a BFA program in illustration at PNCA in Portland, and I'm sure my son will follow his creative vision. Seriously, they're my greatest creation. Everything considered, I'm living the good life.

How did you learn to access your creative talents and gain the confidence to put it out there for everyone to experience?
Putting your art out there at first is tough. I had tons of support and encouragement from friends and family. The first time I showed my work I made 40 small paintings and nearly all of them sold. It suddenly hit me, after years of working in galleries, teaching art to kids and a multitude of odd jobs in between, I can do what I love doing most of all. It took me a really long time to come to that realization and to feel comfortable enough to call myself an artist. I wish that I made it happen sooner, but I had to get to the "why the heck not," phase of my life where I stopped worrying about failure. I also just think creative people are naturally more fearful & sensitive, and I needed time to get over that.

What advice would you give others just beginning their creative adventures?
It's not easy, but if you're the kind of person who puts creating above all else for all means go for it. Eat it, sleep it roll around in it. Your work should be completely your own, don't  try and be somebody else. Think about content, not just style. Most of all treat it like a business, put some serious hours into it, market yourself,  get yourself out there. Oh and don't be a flake, don't perpetuate the artist stereotype, it makes us all look bad.

Upcoming Shows:


Reception: 11/11/2012 2-6 pm
Location: Studio Gallery
1815 Polk Street
San Francisco California 94109



Reception: 12/7/2012 7-11 pm
Location: Kaleid Gallery
(408) 947-1785
88 S. 4th Street,
San Jose California 95113
A holiday group show of affordable small works.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Luna Park Chalk Art Festival

This Saturday, I'll be at the Luna Park Chalk Art Festival drawing one of my pieces on a 10x10 concrete path along with 170 other artists! I'll also have a booth selling my paintings, prints, dolls and more!  Join me for a celebration of the arts including music, crafts, and good food.  This Saturday, September 22, 2012 10AM to 5PM at Backesto Park in San Jose - On the corner of North 13th and Jackson St.  It's free and open to the public!

Also live performances by :
Ukulele Jams, This is Embarrassing, Dogcatcher and  Cuatro Con Tres, plus Movimiento Cosmico Aztec Dancers and KIMA Karate Studio.

Over 50 local artisans will be on hand to sell handcrafted items.

Bring your appetite to the festival!  Food trucks, Omi Ninja SJ, Mona's Fruits, Spice Hut, Soulnese, MoGo BBQ and Treatbot (mmmmmmm!)

Now in its 5th year, the festival brings together thousands of artists, arts students, and art lovers from all cultural and artistic backgrounds for a day of community celebration in a beautiful downtown San Jose park. In 2011, this unique festival attracted over 3,500 participants and visitors.

Proceeds from the festival benefit the Luna Park Arts Foundation, created to promote the arts in our schools and communities through grants and scholarships.

Hope to see you there!  Murphy

Luna Park Chalk Art Festival Poster

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Hey Peeps,
I know it's been awhile since I've let anybody in on what was happening in my funky little life, but I got lost in summer. Lots of camping in Hot Cakes, our 1960 Shasta canned ham style trailer, an all too relaxing trip to Baja; Los Cabos and Todos Santos (wanted to stay there forever), and goofing off with anybody who cared to shirk their responsibilities and go boogie boarding or drink beers with me for the afternoon. What I'm saying here is that I hardly did a thing as far as the art gig is concerned, but those days are over!  I'm back in the studio hardcore and here's what's happening in the coming weeks. xo, Murphy

August 25 & 26 : The West End Festival, Sand City California
This is a fantastic celebration of art, music and food in downtown Sand City on the Monterey Peninsula.  I'll have a booth where I'll be selling my paintings, prints, dolls and other art stuff... so come spend the day!  Saturday 11-5, Sunday 12-5.  
For more info:

                                             Nosy Neighbor - mixed media painting 2012

Sept. 7th San Jose Creatives Anniversary Exhibit
Artwork, music and performances from all of our featured creatives.
Opens Friday night 7pm.
Kaleid Gallery
88 S. 4th Street, San Jose CA

San Jose Creatives is a blog that interviews the extremely talented creative community of San Jose. They  feature artists, designers, musicians, makers, art supporters, anyone who lives a creative life. We ask everyone the same 13 questions to gain insight into and find out what makes these individuals unique. We post a new interview every Sunday.  I'm an upcoming featured artist and will be included in this awesome show.
For more info:

                  My newest print (in progress), limited edition of 100

September 22 : The Luna Park 5th Annual Chalk Art Festival
Saturday 10-5pm, Backesto Park in San Jose. 
The Luna Park Arts Foundation is hosting the 5th annual Luna Park Chalk Art Festival on September 22nd at Backesto Park in San Jose. Sign up to become an artist, vendor, volunteer or sponsor. Featured artists this year will include Lacey Bryant, Michael Foley, Paul J. Gonzalez, Wayne and Cheryl Renshaw, Murphy Adams, Carolina Chavez, and Katrina Marie Loera plus many, many more. Musical guests will include Cuatro Con Tres, Ukelele Jams, and some other surprise artists TBD. The festival will also have some of the best food trucks around. I'll also have a booth selling original work & prints.  This is a super fun event! Any suggestions as to what I might draw?  Below is my drawing from last year! 
For more info:

Hope to see some of you out there. Let me know if you have any questions!  Don't forget there's new stuff in my etsy store all the time and there's currently work at Kaleid Gallery in San Jose, Studio Gallery in San Francisco, & Psycho Donuts, Campbell.

Peace, Murph
PS:  I have a new email address (dang hackers!) to contact me

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

This weekend June 1st & 2nd!


presents the 
5th Annual SubZERO Festival 2012

                                       Take My Heart, mixed media on paper 2012

This Friday night, I'll have a booth at this awesome festival participating along with street performers, bands, artists, hackers, a craft beer garden, food trucks and so much more (check out the web site!). I'll have new work, prints and a photo-booth! I'll even have a raffle where I'll be giving away an original piece! Don't miss it, come see me!

SubZero is focused on emerging and present subcultures thriving in our region, SubZERO is a diy, artistically bent, hi/lo-techno mashup where street meets geek. Come downtown on June 1st to San Jose's SoFA District from 6pm 'til midnight for an inspired evening of arts & culture. In addition to the South FIRST FRIDAYS monthly art walk you'll find outdoor stages of entertainment plus artists, performers & creative businesses celebrating the indie creative spirit!

FRIDAY JUNE 1, 2012 from 6pm-midnight
SoFA district in downtown San Jose
(on South First Street between San Carlos & Reed Streets)
T:  hashtag: #SubZEROFest
If everyone that attends the festival spends just $50. with any artist, performer or musician, we can pump over $500,000 into our subculture economy in just 6 hours. We hope you'll join us!
The Good, the Bad and the Bugly
Saturday, June 2 2012
I'll have a couple of buggy pieces in this cool show all about insects! In addition there will be donuts topped with edible bugs and a donut pizza eating competition!  
Hope to see you sometime this weekend!!!!

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Saturday, May 5, 2012

Save the Dates: June 1st & 2nd!

Hey Peoples,
I have 2 cool shows coming up! So mark your calendar...

I'm really excited because for the first time I'll be participating in the Fifth Annual SubZero Festival in Downtown San Jose on Friday evening June 1st. Focused on emerging and present subcultures thriving in our region, SubZERO is a diy, artistically bent, hi/lo-techno mashup where street meets geek. Come downtown on June 1st to San Jose's SoFA District from 6pm 'til midnight for an inspired evening of arts & culture. In addition to the South FIRST FRIDAYS monthly art walk you'll find outdoor stages of entertainment plus artists, performers & musicians celebrating the indie creative spirit! I'll have a booth with lots of new originals, prints and even a Murphy-esque photo booth!  So come out and see me, SubZero is unlike any festival you've ever been to!

FRIDAY JUNE 1, 2012 from 6pm-midnight
SoFA district in downtown San Jose
(on South First Street between San Carlos & Reed Streets)


 The Good , the Bad and the Bugly :  at Psycho Donuts in Campbell

I've been working on some bug pieces and seeing how I've been married to a beekeeper for a gazillion years I think I may do a bee painting or 2 ...images coming soon!

The buzz at Psycho Donuts is getting louder! The Good, The Bad, and The Bugly is a light-hearted take on the comical side of bugs, featuring local artists whose works perfectly channel the off-kilter vibe at Psycho Donuts. Original artwork is available for sale - starting for as little as $40!

The Good, The Bad, and The Bugly runs from May 26 - June 26, 2012 at Psycho Donuts Campbell.

Donut miss the Artist's Reception on Saturday, June 2nd, from 10am - 3pm at Psycho Donuts Campbell.

The show includes works from the following artists: Christine Benjamin, Murphy Adams, Sheri Debow, Carlos Villez, Lacey Bryant, Michael Foley, Nicolas Caesar, Laura Callin Bennett, John Renzel, Jared Konopitski, Kori Thompson, John Cloud, Laura Zarrin, John Hageman, Michelle Waters, Anthony Barbaria, and more.

At 2pm, take a short break from the artwork and check out our 3rd Annual Donut Pizza Eating Contest! More details at:

Friday, April 13, 2012

Veggielution Avant Garden Funraiser Tonight!

A great event tonight at the Armory in San Jose...I've donated a piece to their art auction!

 Avant Garden 2012

Avant Garden postcard

Veggielution’s Food and Art Fundraiser

April 13th, 2012 7pm – 10pm

$10 online, $12 at the door

The evening will unfold at The Armory
240 N 2nd St
San Jose, CA 95112


  1. a pushing of the boundaries of what is accepted as the norm or the status quo
  2. innovative and ahead of the majority
  3. a group of people who invent or promote new techniques or concepts

Ignite your senses for a night of visualizing food and feasting upon art…

Devour a variety of farm fresh treats prepared by talented local chefs, and enjoy a silent art auction featuring farm-inspired art produced by visionary local artists. Avant Garden harnesses San Jose’s creative talent to support Veggielution’s growing Community Farm. We are pushing the boundaries of food justice by redefining our relationship with our land, our food, and each other.
Come experience a new way to think about food in our community, through the taste of our Spring harvest, and captivating visual artistry! Read more about our chefs and artists here.
Kids ages 12 and under get in free! If you buy your ticket online we will add 1 free Food Ticket to get you started. Additional Food Tickets can be purchased for $3 each at the event. Event Tickets also available at the door.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Print Catalog

                                               Broken Dreams

As more and more of my original paintings are on display at galleries I've taken to making prints of my most popular images.  Over the years I've made quite a few paintings but I've had to go through and select those which  A. people like the most and B. I had the wherewithall to scan the image at a good resolution prior to selling it.

                                             Caffiene Junkie

So on my website I've set up a "Print Catalog" section where you can view prints which are available for purchase.  I'll be adding to this all the time as well as listing new available prints in my etsy store.

                                            Playing Favorites

I also have a deal in my etsy store if you want to purchase multiple prints. 1 for $20. 2 for $35 or 3 for $50.  If you get the 3 you get free shipping too!  All prints come matted in a black mat with backing in a cello envelope.

Check out my print catalog at: