Thursday, January 2, 2014

Into the Minors: The King of Swords

This one came about specifically through a Facebook discussion with Carrie Paris some months ago. She posted a card picture showing, I believe, the King of Hearts lopping off his own head with a sword. There's a whole story behind that, but if I had the details I lost them in the computer crash.

The suit of Hearts in a regular deck corresponds with the suit of Cups in Tarot... and I allowed as how that image would make for a better King of Swords than it would a King of Cups, given that the Sword King is all about lofty ideals, high thoughts. administrative ability and type A personalities. That was months and months ago. Now that the time has come to make my own King of Swords, I connected that conversation with a wonderful poster featuring the great stage magician Keller.

Keller is forgotten today by the general public if not by magic fans, but he was certainly one of the greatest magicians of his age -- a better magician in many ways than Harry Houdini. One of his tricks was a self-decapitation and head levitation trick, as featured on one of his posters. I've combined art from the poster with a head shot of Kellar himself, and combined them with several other elements that give the card, I think, a real Rene Magritte kind of feeling. And a sideshow feeling as well, I hope.

The title of "Governor" of course is a circus term -- owners and managers of circuses were always referred to as Governor -- so all of my Kings will carry that title as well. Queens will be Duchesses. Knights will be Riders. The jury is still out on what I'm going to call the Pages, although I have a preference. Likely the jury will remain out on that until I actually do the first Page design. 

Up Next: The Ace of Pentacles.

Thanks for dropping by!

-- Freder