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It was my honor and privilege to speak to Murray Tinkelman’s MFA class in Illustration yesterday. The talk took place at Pasadena’s Best Western on Colorado Blvd., where Murray was conducting his master program for professional illustrators. For those of you who are not familiar with Murray’s work here’s some information about the master and mentor to many:

Murray Tinkelman, an award-winning artist winner of gold medals from the Society of Illustrators, The New York Art Directors Club and the Society of Publications Designers. His illustrations have appeared in a variety of publications such as Atlantic Monthly, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. The National Park Service commissioned Tinkelman to do drawings and paintings of National Parks and Monuments. Also the U.S. Air Force to be an artist-reporter on specific missions. He has had a one-man exhibit of his baseball art at The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York in 1994 and The United States Sports Academy in Daphne, Alabama in 1995. His work is represented in the permanent collections of the Brooklyn Museum, the Delaware Art Museum, the International Photography Hall of Fame & Museum, and the New Britain Museum of American Art.

Tinkelman has also been a guest curator for The Discovery Museum in Bridgeport, Connecticut,and the Society of Illustrators, Museum of American Illustration in New York City.

Tinkelman was the recipient of the 1999 Distinguished Educator in the Arts award from the Society of Illustrators in New York. The 1995 Sports Artist of the Year from The United States Sports Academy, the 1970 Artist of the Year award from The Graphic Arts Guild in New York City, and he 2001 Syracuse University Faculty Service Citation.

He is Professor Emeritus from Syracuse University where he taught in the undergraduate program and was the senior advisor in the Independent Study MA Program in Illustration for over 25 years from 1979 – 2006.Murray is now the Director of the Limited Residency MFA program at the Hartford Art School, University of Hartford. This program is completely dedicated to the field of Illustration.

Tinkelman travels around the country to colleges, universities and museums, giving entertaining slide presentations on his own work,The History of American Illustration, and other art topics. 

In the coming days I will be posting my interview with Murray in several parts. I found him to be honest, engaging and inspiring and as if this isn’t enough a very talented and nice guy.