Monthly Archives: July 2012
The Two of Wands represents a time when you need to realize that the world is your oyster. I decided to paint the giraffe for this tarot because I wanted to create an image of this incredibly tall creature having the advantage of being able to see further than anyone else, able to see every detail of the world around it: what lies ahead, what may come, and how to prepare for it. That, I think, is the power of the Two of Wands.
You’d think I’d have a better picture for the day after my birthday, but all I have on my camera was a shot I took of an English muffin with blueberry jam, and a couple of multi-vitamins and muscle pain meds for my fibro. Fascinating, right? That day was actually a good day. I cleaned up a ton and spent the last night with my boyfriend and his family, and watched a whole lot of Batsu game videos. Ah, those crazy Asians.
I flew back home the next day. The flight was great, though for some reason I was put on a window seat when I know we specifically chose aisle.. and I also ended up in the emergency exit row, which I’m sure we didn’t choose either. That was a first time for me in that row, but frankly, it was kinda freaking awesome because of all the amazing leg room! I like happy changes.
I definitely missed home, but now I’m looking forward to the next trip back.
The Three of Cups is definitely a time of joy and celebration. That’s all I really wanted to show in this painting: a fun, light-hearted image of a couple of dolphins playing and splashing about. A lot of energy, a lot of warm sunlight on their skin, and a positive sense of friendship. I wanted to move away from normal bottle nosed dolphins and ended up choosing the dusky dolphin because they looked so unique; plus I especially liked how I could play around with their markings a bit to include the cups on their sides.
My awesomely awesome birthday was definitely a treat. I will try to refrain from being all gushy over being able to spend it with my boyfriend, but he definitely kicked ass to specifically go out on this day even after a long day at work. (Plus he wake up insanely early to get to work the next day.. and then there was the fact that this was right after he sliced up his finger the day before!)
Having awesome pretzels has been a delicious tradition for us. Regular pretzels with salt please! No dips necessary. Thanks so much!
We were both really excited for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Not that we expected it to be a good movie, but I mean, seriously? Abraham Lincoln beating the crap out of vampires? We are in on that! It was pretty entertaining, I mus tsay. Sure, it was a good fail on a lot of things, some scenes were pretty damn boring, the script in general – jeebus. But I mean really, who’s going to walk into this one expecting to be blown away? We expected Abraham Lincoln, vampires and a whole lot of absurdity and it did not disappoint. And I didn’t know that Mary Elizabeth Winstead was in this one; so the entire time, my brain was just like.. OH MAN, RAMONA FLOWERS. YESS.
After the movie, it was already kind of late, but we made it to Karl Strauss for dinner with enough time to spare. We both had some really tasty burgers (He had the Smoked Gouda burger and I had the Big Beer Burger. Oh man, that booze brined bacon? OH MAN.) And then of course, the real reason we went out – for birthday dessert! We had the Chocolate on Tap (a brownie with boozed up caramel sauce and lots of delicious awesomeness in there) and the Beeramisu (tiramisu with booze soaked ladyfingers, oh my god~) and both were sinfully delicious. It was a wonderful night and a fantastic birthday.
And Kevin Smith made a pseudo cameo, doing his weekly podcasts at Citywalk. We were dining outside and that space was pretty close – such a funny distraction throughout dinner!
I hated spiders when I was a kid. Hated spiders. I remember finding not one, but two spiders on my bed one night.. and promptly spent the rest of my night in my parents’ bed. For like days after. Now of course, I don’t mind them so much. (Except for the ones I kept seeing while I was in California.. because they looked like they could eat the small ones we get in Toronto for breakfast. Blech!) I’m not particularly fond of finding them on me, but if one happens to be on the wall or my desk, I just let them be, because while I may not be the biggest fan of spiders, I hate fruit flies more. And the spiders can nom on aall the fruit flies they want.
Choosing a spider to paint for the Wheel of Fortune too was not the easiest of tasks either. It was a very easy choice in that the spider can be symbolic as the weaver of fate, but having a plethora of spider photographs as inspiration and reference, all spread out on the desktop, it kinda makes you itchy. Those creepy faces, those hairs, ugh, do I really have to stare at these?? But I persisted, and this painting was the result. I chose the orb weaver spider because frankly, I thought it was quite beautiful, in that creepy oh-god-it’s-still-a-spider-but-I-can-live-with-that kind of way, and I had a lot of fun painting the curving tree branch to mimic the wheel shape. The actual web itself was practically a treat to paint, thankfully. Not the most pleasant of experiences creating this tarot, but I think it worked out.
(Oh no, I’m missing Day 179. I think my boyfriend has a few shots that day that I can get later.)
I didn’t know that the movie The Perfect Host existed until I saw it on Netflix. David Hyde Pierce as the main character? Oh I am so there. Being a fan girl for Niles all those years, this movie was a delight. A friend had asked me if he essentially played Niles in this movie, and you know, I would say he definitely didn’t escape the quirky character of Niles.. but only if you were to take Niles’ brain, and really drench it in crack or meth, then you’d probably end up with this freaky flick. Definitely a darker, creepier movie, with a touch of horror and hilariously dark twists and turns, it was like this film was made for Pierce. He nailed it, and I’d definitely watch this one again.
My boyfriend cut open his thumb at work on Day 180. Ack! He ended up with a trip to the emergency room, a couple of stitches and this awesome bandage. He’s all better now though, whew, and it did make for a cool picture.
The Chariot tarot immediately started with a hurdle: should I include an actual chariot in this painting?
I’ve tried to make this tarot deck have more of a natural feel, to have the distinct absence of any man-made creations. Of course there have been exceptions. One was definitely the Nine of Wands, a circus elephant breaking free from its restraints.
The other obvious exceptions have been the Swords cards as well. I’ve found the Swords tarot to be one of the more challenging suits to create. With the wands, cups and pentacles, I’ve incorporated them as more symbolic representations: a flower, leaves, a tree. But with the swords, I’ve kept them as actual swords. Painting an animal surrounded by swords and trying to create a message with that imagery has been tough!
But, back to the Chariot. I decided to paint a horse for this card, which seemed like one of the more fitting choices. I had thought of painting it both black and white, as a combination of the two creatures that are usually pulling the chariot in traditional images, but in the end, the white horse seemed to just visually work better for me. The horse’s mane had this almost ethereal feel to it; so I felt like I should put almost like a whisper of the chariot behind the horse. I think it worked out in the end. To me, despite what normal Chariot cards are like, this one has a bit of a dream-like quality to it. So I didn’t even tether the horse to the chariot, because really, the true Chariot is the horse itself.
Moving from slothfulness, comes a tarot of greed: the Four of Pentacles. I wanted to paint a skunk as the animal for this card, a critter that looked a little extravagant and beautiful. This skunk has four shiny strawberries in its possession; the juiciest, plumpest strawberries ever, and though they may be a bit too much to handle for this skunk, it is not going to give them up. Share it with others? Pah! When you’ve worked so hard to achieve something that you’ve really wanted, you’re not about to let it all go. Good fortune is shining down on you, and you are not going anywhere or letting anyone else have a glimpse of it. It is all yours and only yours!
The Four of Cups is a tarot of inaction, of not being fully aware of what’s around you and perhaps a sign of something important that’s been ignored because of current distractions. I chose the sloth as the animal for this card, as the perfect symbol of inaction and well, slothfulness. The sloth is high in a Cecropia tree, so very close to the leaves yet facing away from it, its very food source. The clouds grow as its mind gets more and more clouded, yet the sloth stays somewhat blissful and unaware.