Interview: Philip Murphy Talks Cover Art


With Philip Murphy having two covers out in August with BOOM! Studios, I thought I’d ask him some questions about putting together cover art.

Covers tend to be released a bit in advance of the books. I was wondering how much information you have before starting a cover?

Well I have to say I have been very fortunate to be given a lot of freedom when it comes to the covers I have worked on which is really great as it gives you a lot of room for experimenting and trying out ideas then running those by my editors and getting their feedback is great too because you get a different pair of eyes on it which opens up even more ideas you can try out.

What’s your process for doing a cover?

Well first I get the details of the project then I do around six to maybe nine sketch covers just to have a few ideas to choose from, then I send those off and when I get the feedback and go ahead I start inking then I colour.

What do you think is the most important thing about covers?

That they need to be foil, embossed and very very shiny …..

Ha! no well Um… I think that’s really up to each artist, I have seen minimalist covers that are just so beautiful and highly detailed covers you could just sit and stare at for hours and still find new things. Myself I would say they need to be eye catching and stand out a little so if you are in a comic shop and you are not looking for any specific title just browsing the shelves that cover may get your attention and you might think hey maybe I will give this book a shot .
I noticed that you do the colouring too. I’m kind of interested in how people get into colouring.

Yes I do the colours myself when I can deadline permitting, but I have also been fortunate enough to work with a few great colourists who have just done epic things with my work. On how you get into colouring I can only go by my own experience which was a lot of luck ha.

You have a Bill & Ted cover coming out (issue 6 out in August). It must be cool to be doing the cover for a comic about such a well known movie franchise.

Ha! Yeah! Cool is indeed correct. I grew up watching the Bill & Ted movies and the Saturday morning cartoon so I’m a huge fanboy and the BOOM! Studios comic captures the characters and ideas so perfectly it was literally a dream come true to have a part in the project.

What else do you have coming out?

HA! Well I’m afraid I’m going to have to keep that under my hat for the moment but hopefully will have some info for you soon 😉