Tuesday, February 25, 2014

I'm a Ba-aaaa-ad Boy!

I know that this is going to offend some people ... but, you know what?

I really don't give a good god damn.

I have other completed designs in line to be revealed here, but I had SO much fun designing this one the other day that I wanted to leapfrog it over all the others.

The Four of Pentacles has been described as "The Miser Card," although its meanings are a good deal more subtle than a simple title or keyword could convey. In Rider-Waite-Smith, the central figure is shown clutching two pentacles in his arms, and with his feet planted firmly on the other two. In the background there is a great cityscape... the Domain of which the figure is the Master....

(Fans of SEINFELD: any notion that the four of pentacles may be a great wanker is purely intentional...)

In the process of designing this deck, I am at my happiest when an image comes along and actually says to me, "Hello! I am the obvious choice for [insert card here]!" Although I could not quantify the reasons, this gentleman screamed out "Four of Pentacles" to me.

I didn't really understand why, and I didn't really start to have fun with this design, until I had the sudden idea of sticking the pies under his arms. 

And when I did, I practically laughed myself silly, and all at once the card snapped into focus. 

Once the pies were in, I really started to have an inordinate amount of fun with this card.

But hey, I'm not laughing AT him, I'm really laughing WITH him. After all... although I was a Slim Jim for Many a Moon in my younger days, now well into my fifties I am not exactly svelte myself...

The Thoth keyword for this card is POWER. That didn't quite cut it for me. DOMINION is so much more open to interpretation and variance. And if my four of rings is not necessarily the Master of his Domain, he is certainly the master of his pies.

-- Freder

Sunday, February 23, 2014

There's One Knight Missing

And here we see the Knight of Pentacles, or Coins, or Disks, or in the case of a circus tarot -- the Rings. This is the suit of Earth, and of Earthly Concerns. A circus ring sits on the ground and allows the audience to focus on specific events before them, containing the great Acts of the Circus. The Knights, or in this case the Riders, are in many ways the Star Performers. Knights represent the element of Fire, so this Knight is the Fire in the Earth. Forward to Battle and Glory!

She sits posed against a very very Grant Wood-esque landscape of rolling hills where a tatty little dog-and-pony show has raised its tents. Alchemical symbols spin in the air behind her. Her giant horse is easily the heftiest and most solid horse of all the Riders. You can count on this lady to give a strong and solid performance at every show.

By my calculations, I've completed a whole suit of the Minor Arcana. No, not a whole suit, because I've been jumping around as inspiration hits, but in terms of numbers, I've done that many, a good solid 1/4 of the Minor Arcana. That still leaves the lion's share ahead of me... bur it's a danged good start, and I've yet to hit the wall in terms of having No Idea what to do with a card design -- although I look at some of the cards ahead of me and can see that time coming right up, fast as a horse rider!

-- Freder