For the Kids’ Room

Beautiful Daughter

I thought of the phrase “There is nothing in this world more beautiful than a daughter” a couple of weeks ago. I wanted to create something for my little girls’ room, and I felt like the opportunity presented itself when those words popped into my head.  I drew the daisies in pen and ink first, then painted them in bright watercolors.  I spent a lot of time holding the brush as far away from me as possible while I was creating the splatters, but I got pretty messy anyway.  I scanned the painting and made all the adjustments I wanted and added the text at the top.  I can’t wait to get this up on the wall!


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Filed under Custom Illustrations, Family, graphic design

A Couple of New Greeting Card Designs

Star Birthday Card

Valentine's Day Card

One thing that I love to do is enter competitions. I don’t win as often as I enter, but it doesn’t seem to deter me. I created these two greeting card designs for a teen themed competition. The idea was to create an encouraging birthday card for a teen (the star card), and a sweet Valentine’s Day card for a teen (the floating mailbox card). The cards may have been a little too general for the theme, but I did like the way they turned out. One of the great things about competitions is that even if you don’t win, you have another great design to add to your portfolio and pummel potential publishers with.

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Filed under graphic design, Greeting Cards

Jewelry Postcard Design for Gold Adore

I just finished these lovely little postcards for Gillian at Gold Adore.  I love doing custom work.  There is something extremely satisfying about filling a need or solving a problem that someone has.

Gold Adore is a beautiful Etsy shop full of unique vintage jewelry.  I really encourage you to check it out.  I always thought that vintage jewelry wasn’t for me until I saw Gillian’s shop.  She has great taste and I fell in love with several of her items right away.  Be sure to visit her Etsy Shop and her blog.



Gold Adore Postcard
Gold Adore Postcard

If you would like to meet Gillian in person, you can attend the Etsy wedding expo “To Have and To Hold”. It’s happening on April 28th in New York City. Find more details here:

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Filed under Custom Illustrations, graphic design

They Draw and Cook *Kraft* Competition

Rustic Grilled Cheese

Copyright Dena McMurdie 2012

They Draw and Cook hosted an illustrated recipe contest for Kraft Foods. The contest closed yesterday. This was my interpretation of their recipe for Rustic Grilled Cheese. I initially wanted the lumberjack to be Paul Bunion. I really wanted to put the blue bull in the design and everything. As I worked through the design, I decided that I liked this one the best. My husband (my ever vigilant and all-knowing critic) agreed that this was the best design.  Personally, I love the way it turned out.  My lumberjack is handsome, and obviously very happy to be eating a Rustic Grilled Cheese.

All of the recipes on this site are available for sale as prints and high-resolution downloads.  Some of them are even included in a recipe book, calendar, and so forth.  If you love to cook, this is a really fun website to browse and maybe even discover some unique artwork for your kitchen!

You can view the rest of the entries here:

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Whiteboard Process

whiteboard process

For a royalty free copy of this file (eps, ai, cdr, jpg), please visit my iStockphoto page.

Here is my latest stock illustration for iStockphoto.  I realized lately that business illustrations are in high demand and silhouettes are always popular.  Most other illustrators leave the silhouette as one big black blob, and that looks nice, but I like putting the white shirt and tie on my businessman.  I feel like it adds that little something extra to make the illustration look classy and versatile.  This is the first time that I have submitted anything with a gradient to iStockphoto.  I was a little nervous to do it and I exported the file about 1000 times until  was satisfied that it wouldn’t splice (break into pieces) when opened.

I included both an Adobe Illustrator file and a CorelDraw file in a zip folder just in case there are Corel users out there.  Corel usually splices gradients, no matter how you import them, so I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t cutting off any designers at the knees.  If you have any spectacular ideas or specific projects in mind, please send them my way!

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Filed under Business and Technology

Finished Business Card Design

Business Card DesignFront

Business Card DesignBack

Here is the finished business card design for my sister-in-law. It is an expression of her and an extension of her products. If you haven’t already, you really should check out her blog and etsy shop. She is creative and crafty and a super fun person. Her energy really comes through.

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Filed under Business and Technology, Custom Illustrations, Family

Updated Business Card Designs

Here are the updated designs for my sister-in-law’s business cards. I am personally a huge fan of the brightly colored designs. I just love how they pop. Nobody would misplace your business card if it were this colorful! I also enjoy the more muted tones of the softer color palette. It is feminine and slightly romantic. I can’t wait to see which one she likes!

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Filed under Business and Technology, Custom Illustrations, Family