A member of the Tolkien community is gone. Jeffrey “Jef” Patrick Murray died Monday, Aug. 3 unexpectedly, at the age of 55.
Jef, living in Decauter, Georgia, was best known to many as a Tolkien artist, and was a selected artist at the upcoming Dragon Con in Atlanta. He leaves behind family and friends who know him as more than his work and will miss him dearly.
Jef was scheduled to help the Tolkien track of programming at Dragon Con this year, as he has many others, and will be missed and remembered. He was active year round in a Facebook group dedicated to the convention, where he posted his art weekly. He put his effort where his passion was and it will be hard not to notice that he hasn’t posted each Tolkien Tuesday.
Jef had a deep spiritual connection with the works of J.R.R. Tolkien and credited the professor and his writings with his conversion to Catholicism. Besides leaving his mark in Tolkien fandom, he was involved as a writer and artist in religious publications and websites. He also wrote his own stories and poems.
Murray received a note of tribute from fellow artist and friend Ted Naismith, noting his passing and explaining that the pair kept in contact via email despite different viewpoints of the world. He said in part:
“I’m proud to call Jef a friend, fellow artist, scholar and colleague, and deeply mourn his loss. My deepest condolences to Lorraine and Jef’s family and close friends. He was a very lively and dedicated voice and talent in our community, and he leaves an impressive legacy. I’m truly saddened that he has left us, it’s simply too soon! I’d like to think he is now free to roam the width and breadth of Middle-earth and Valinor with his canvases and songs.”
Tolkien scholar Constance Wagner, who got to know Jeff at Dragon Con also spoke of her sadness at his passing:
“He has gone Into the West to paint forever with starlight. I will miss his wit and kindness and sense of fun. I will miss his talent. But mostly, I will miss him. Namarie, Jef. Elen sila lumenn’ omentielvo.”
The Tolkien Society knew Jef and his works well. He often contributed to its publications Amon Hen and Mallorn. It published a notice of his death, expressing sadness at his passing.
It is interesting to note, that he graduated from Georgia Tech with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering according to this obituary.
TheOneRing.net wishes our deepest condolences to those hurt by the loss of Jef, yet we honor his works and his passion and his life.
“Although it’s thought good form to speak about oneself in a “Biography” section, I’m always embarrassed that I’ll either say too much and sound pompous or too little and sound elusive. I intend neither, so beg your pardon in advance if I strike the wrong balance.
I’ve sketched and painted natural and mythological wildlife and landscapes since my childhood years in the north Georgia hills. I suspect I’m best known for my illustrations from Inklings-themed publications, although I’m very grateful that my work has also been published in many other books and journals.
I love the writings of G. K. Chesterton (see my artist’s statement), and a good deal of my work explores the connection between myth/fairy tales and Christian thought. I am Artist-in-Residence for the St. Austin Review (StAR).
My illustrations of whimsical tales and poems and my stories and essays have appeared in numerous publications worldwide, including Amon Hen, Mallorn, Silver Leaves, the St. Austin Review (StAR), the Georgia Bulletin, and Integrated Catholic Life. My most recent book illustrations appear in Seer: A Wizard’s Journal.
Lorraine and I reside in Decatur, Georgia with hamster-in-residence Ignatius, and up to 60,000 honeybees.”
Clear your calendars this coming October! Extended editions of all three Hobbit movies are set to show in theaters over three nights and, of course, you’ll want to see them all! From FarAwayEntertainment.com:
Fathom Events and Warner Bros. are partnering to present the extended editions of all three Hobbit movies. Shown over three nights, the epic Peter Jackson trilogy will be the first time the extended editions have ever been released in theatres. Also included will be an exclusive introduction by director Peter Jackson. First night showing starts Monday, October 5th, 2015 at 7:30pm local. Tickets will be regular admission prices for each movie.
It’s not clear whether the three nights will be consecutive nights, as the AMC Theater website has The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies billed for October 13th. It’s also not clear if other theater chains other than AMC will be carrying the movies. Look for updates here as we get them and if you hear anything from your local theaters, let us know at email@example.com.
Update-2 (8/4/15): the Celebration Cinema chain (mid-Michigan) has confirmed that they’ll be participating, but no dates are available yet. We’ve also had confirmation that the AMC 14 in Tustin, CA will be showing all three movies on the following schedule:
The Hobbit: AUJ Extended – Monday, October 5th, 2015 @ 7:30 PM
The Hobbit: DOS Extended – Wednesday, October 7th, 2015 @ 7:30 PM
The Hobbit: BOTFA Extended – Tuesday, October 13th. 2015 @ 7:30 PM
So, it looks like a tentative schedule is starting to materialize: two movies the week of October 5th with the final showing of BOTFA the following week. Exciting news! Thanks to gramma and Ryan for the updates! We’ll continue to report updates here as we get them.
Today is the first of three wonderful weeks of new items we can order from the goodies Weta Workshop had on display at Comic-Con 2015.
Minas Tirith one of the most important places in all of Middle-earth has been expertly captured by principal sculptor Leonard Ellis. All told it took eight people a total of 1,000 hours to bring this collectible to life. Due to land in our collections starting in the fourth quarter of this year Minas Tirith can be yours for $599.
One of the pieces that stole Comic-Con 2014, and was a big hit again this year at Comic-Con 2015, is the amazing Smaug the Terrible by Weta Workshop. Sculpted by Lindsey Crummett and Gary Hunt this piece is a perfect representation of what we saw of Smaug during The Hobbit Trilogy. Smaug is easily one of Weta’s best pieces with some of the most fantastic details and paints we’ve seen. You can get Smaug for $749 with an edition size of 2000 pieces world-wide. He is worth every last penny. As you may have heard me say in my Comic-Con booth tour, if you only get one piece from The Hobbit then this is one you should. (more…)
Our friends at Weta Workshop had so many great items at Comic-Con this year. Starting from next week, and continuing for the following two weeks, fans will get a chance to place pre-orders for some of these items. The first item will be available on August 3rd, this item being my favorite piece at Comic-Con, Minas Tirith. Then on the following two weeks, August 10th and 17th, we will get the Uruk-hai Swordsman (August 10th) and Dain Ironfoot on War Boar (August 17th). All three items will become available for pre-order at the same time starting at 2pm PST. (more…)
Sculpted by Gary Hunt this fantastic statue made its debut at Comic-Con just last year. This pose and the likeness are fantastic! They capture Bard as he’s trying to do all he possibly can to take out the dragon Smaug. Bard comes in with an edition size of 1000 pieces world-wide and is in-stock in both the United States and New Zealand warehouses while the UK is in pre-order status. You can add Bard to your collection for just $299. (more…)
San Diego Comic Con 2015 is now in the books, let’s do a little recap for any all things related to Tolkien fandom and TORn. The TORn panel, titled “What’s next for Tolkien Fans?” was on Friday afternoon, and directly after the panel we had our annual Tolkien themed Cosplay photo Op, as seen in the first photo.
The panel itself began at 4pm, but without the snazzy little visual presentation we normally have. The laptop that the presentation was on, and had been operating just 2 hours earlier, decided it was taking the afternoon off. Apparently it helped the panel move along at a quicker pace, leaving plenty of room for questions at the end. So, what was discussed in the panel, what IS next for Tolkien fans? (more…)
Join us here at TheOneRing.net in wishing a very happy birthday to everyone’s favorite dragon/dark lord, Benedict Cumberbatch. Okay, he’s also our favorite detective, soldier, spy, crypotgrapher, mad scientist and monster. One thing is for certain, his distinctive voice and vocal skills added depth to both his roles as Smaug the dragon and The Necromance in The Hobbit movies, and were a delight to listen and tremble to. Many happy returns, oh Benedict, the Tremendous!
If you were lucky enough to be at Comic-Con 2015 you were not only able to see this in person but snag it as well. The amazing talent that is Jerry Vanderstelt has a new Sauron print available for all Middle-earth fans to add to their collection. Titled “Dark Majesty” this print captures Sauron reaching through the print with The One Ring all lit up as he comes for his prey. This print can be had in 16 x 20 Lithographs and 17 x 22 Paper Giclees. Keep an eye on Vanderstelt Studio store to make sure you add a fantastic rendition of the Dark Lord himself.
We’ve completed another Comic-Con and once again our friends at Weta Workshop did not disappoint. There are new pieces from both The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, thus letting fans add to the amazing work from Weta many of us already have. From The Lord of the Rings comes one of the coolest looking orcs in the Uruk-hai Swordsman piece, another great environment in Minas Tirith, and the mini line adds Frodo Baggins. The Uruk-hai and Minas Tirith are due to ship during quarter four of this year while Frodo is due in quarter three.
This site is maintained and updated by fans of The Lord of the Rings, and is in no way affiliated with Tolkien Enterprises or the Tolkien Estate. We in no way claim the artwork displayed to be our own. Copyrights and trademarks for the books, films, articles, and other promotional materials are held by their respective owners and their use is allowed under the fair use clause of the Copyright Law.