Charles R. Murphy
True North Studio
518 W. 8th Street
Traverse City, MI 49684
Phone: 231.947.6285
FAX: 231.947.6285





Charles Murphy grew up in southern Minnesota and remembers always wanting to be a painter. His grandfather, who was fluent with a pencil, served as his earliest inspiration.

Graduating from Minnesota State University with his BFA in Studio Art, he set off for Cape Cod to immerse himself in a community of artists. After his first taste of painting and exhibiting on the East Coast, he settled in the Grand Traverse Bay Area of northern Michigan where he again found himself in a large community of artists. For several years, Murphy exhibited in art fairs around the state, garnering awards and a large audience of collectors. With additional assistance from galleries and dealers who represent him, his work found its way into many large corporate collections such as Kraft, General Motors, Prudential, Mead Corporation, International Harvester, U.S. Gypsum and John Hancock.

While his career as a painter took form he supplemented his income through another of his interests, woodworking. Murphy spent a number of years designing furniture and cabinet making for shops in the Grand Traverse region. Seeking greater fulfillment from his painting, he set the woodworking aside and began teaching painting classes and workshops at regional art centers. Expanding on this experience he has undertaken more travel for his own painting as well as the opportunity to teach in a variety of environments. These pursuits have taken him around the U.S. to France, Spain, Italy, Nova Scotia, Hawaii and the Caribbean.

Charles has illustrated two books; the first, a collaboration with a young, learning disabled writer yielding the award winning "Reach for the Moon," published by Scholastic and the second, a children's book titled "Smokey the Raccoon," published by P.J. Publishing. In 2002 Charles was flattered to have his work, selected for publication in Artists' Magazine's 2002 limited edition calendar. The calendar features 13 artists juried from a field of 13,000. The Traverse Area Arts Council named Charles "Art Educator of the Year" in 2003. For information on scheduled classes and workshops, 231.941.9488. He currently teaches painting during Fall, Winter and Spring programs at the Art Center in Traverse City, Michigan.

For Spring 2009 Catalog CLICK HERE


  • The Twisted Fish, Elk Rapids, Michigan
  • Treeline Gallery, Suttons Bay, Michigan
  • McMillen's Instant Framer, Traverse City, Michigan
  • Glen Lake Artists Gallery, Glen Arbor, Michigan
  • Bier Art Gallery, Charlevoix, Michigan


  • Prints Available: Downtown Frame-Up - Traverse City
                                 Dennos Museum Store - Traverse City
                                 Online Catalog (download from


  • Books Illustrated by Charles R. Murphy:
    "Reach for the Moon" By Samantha Abeel
    "Smokey the Raccoon" By Peggy Featherstone
    "Where is Bobbi?" By Joyce Ward
    "The Waking Hour" By Charles R. Murphy
    "Chickadees at Night" By Bill O. Smith


  • Studio hours by appointment, 231.947.6285




"The Heron"
Oil on canvas


"Sunset on Still Water"
Oil on canvas


“Seasonal Pond w Moonrise"
Oil on Canvas

"Lost Treasures"
Oil and gold leaf on textured canvas.



T-shirts Available!

Copyright © 2003, Charles R. Murphy. All rights reserved. All images and designs on this World Wide Web site are for public viewing only and are protected under United States and International copyright laws. No reproduction rights are granted, licensed or sanctioned in any form or manner and are hereby exclusively reserved by Charles R. Murphy.