An Illustrated Look Inside Michael Murphy's Pop Art Inspired Architectural Renderings
Can you tell us about yourself and your creative background?
I was born in San Francisco, and received a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from the University of New Mexico. I practiced architecture in San Francisco for eight years before moving to London where I lived for ten years. Then, I moved back to the sun in San Francisco in 2008 where I’ve been ever since.
When did you know you wanted to become an artist?
It’s something that never just dawned on me. It was a very slow process of creating works one by one over many years until realizing that I was doing it full time and making a living from it.
Tell us a bit about your process. How do you get started on your pieces?
Everything starts off with a sketch of some kind, be it an image of an existing piece of architecture or something I designed myself. I then develop the sketch into a more formal rendering, be it paint or digital, and try to make it exist within the confines of a canvas or print. Coloring is typically the last “move” that’s made but more often than not the color palettes lead me to slightly adjust the image.
How would you describe your artistic style?
The subject matter is all very architectural in nature, and varies between real and unbuilt environments. The style I would say is borderline Pop Art/architectural rendering.
What is the most important first impression that your work should have on the viewer?
That’s a really good question. I’m not sure what the hoped-for first impression would be but one thing that is very important to me is that the viewer gains a new way to see Modern architecture and design, perhaps gaining a changed viewpoint on the subject matter, in a positive way.
Regarding all your works, is there a specific one that you feel a greater love and attachment to, above the others?
Not really, as Frank Lloyd Wright said when asked which of his buildings is his favorite his response was “the next one.” That sort of sums it up for me as well.
Who are some of artists who have inspired your work?
Ed Rushe, Giorgio de Chirico, Raymond Loewy, Stuart Davis are notable and very influential to me.
What type of art do you collect for your own home?
We have a pretty eclectic collection but one of our favorites is Lindsey Kustusch who does incredible cityscapes. My wife is an architect so we lean heavily towards work that features the built environment.