Handling a brand new deck is strange. It looks different, it feels different, it *sounds* different. The edges feel different.. a little sharper, almost too new. The “woosh” sound is different as I shuffle them with my hands. I know that essentially it’s the same deck. It was made with the same love as before. But this feels so different to me.
I spent a lot of time working through these images to make them as awesome as possible.. “Animism 2.0” is just a little bit brighter, just a little bit warmer and though in reality, it’s just a very subtle change, it still feels like a brand new tarot. To me, it really is a brand new tarot.
It’s kind of funny, because while I’ve been working on improving this deck, I haven’t actually been using my own in a long time. Sometimes things happen and I find myself far away from using tarot. I didn’t feel like I was in the right mindset to come back to it. But now with this, this kind of new deck, I knew I wanted to start again. It’s like a new beginning.
I shuffled, and drew, and the Five of Wands is my very first card from my ‘new’ tarot. And while it was completely unexpected, it feels like it came when I needed it most. Talk about internal struggles. The tension, the fiery red, the feeling of urgency, it says a lot, and it forces you to think about what the next step needs to be. It’s a good wake-up call.
I’m as humble as they come, but damn it all, I love my ‘new’ deck. It’s back, and it’s beautiful, and I am in love.
The Animism Tarot is back and is now available @ Rainbowofcrazy.com.
If I had to choose which Animism Tarot card was the most challenging to create, I would not hesitate to pick Justice.
The concept of this deck was to take animal and tarot qualities and combine them together to create something very special. Some tarot cards were certainly much easier to create than others because certain cards had immediate connections with certain animals. For example, The Hanged Man and the possum were practically meant to be.
But Justice? Justice was, by far the hardest card to plan.
How do you paint something as challenging as Justice? I found it really hard to put it into the right image for this deck. It’s not really something that’s associated with the animal world and animal symbolism. I mean.. what did Justice really mean to me? The first things that come to mind were court systems, the scale, the blindfolded Themis, and certain Justice tarot cards bring about images of authority and righteousness. One animal that was often associated with things like justice was the eagle. Oh, well, there’s America and the eagle! Easy choice! But my eagle was front and center as the Ace of Swords, and to me, that’s where it belonged. No, my Justice would be different.
I was stuck with Justice with a very long time. It often got pushed to the side a little bit, and a little bit more as I worked on other tarot cards instead. I really had to think about Justice, and what it really meant to me. Looking at other concepts and ideas did little to actually help me.
Thankfully, when you stop focusing on other influences, you can finally find the right focus.
What helped me wasn’t looking at what images were associated with Justice, but rather what the tarot card meant, not only to other tarot readers or tarot guides, but what I felt like the card really meant for me. To me, the Justice tarot isn’t about law or punishment. Justice, to me, is about balance.
It’s about being aware of what’s around you, being aware of the outcomes that may arise and the effects that may come from the decisions that you make. With such human qualities that the Justice tarot brought about, it finally made sense to place the chimpanzee as my animal for Justice. Just look into their eyes and try to deny that we are not somehow connected, that they would not be aware of being aware. Two chimpanzees became my Justice, creating that sense of balance, but to also share that shared moment in time. They shared a moment of understanding, even without one spoken word. My Justice was finally complete.
When you get a new tarot deck and you shuffle those cards for the first time, do you ever remember the first card that you draw from that brand new deck? When the very first proof of The Animism Tarot arrived at my door, and I shuffled those cards, I dealt my very first tarot card from the deck and thought about the type of journey the deck and I would share,
Well, I drew Justice.
I thought that was fitting.
The Emperor had made a few appearances in my readings recently; I guess he took a break today. Maybe this reading was a bit too on the emotional side for him (Ace of Cups and The Moon?! No thank you!); so he wanted to step away. But even though he’s not there, I can still feel his presence; like he’s just peeking over my shoulder, pointing to each of the cards and pushing at me to take charge of things. Sigh 😛 Maybe he sent the Magician in his place in the reading instead… The Magician is kind of staring at me with this look that says, “hey, this is serious. Stay focused!”
Even though the Animism Tarot is complete, I feel like I’m still at the start of the road when it comes to actual tarot reading. And even though I can pull out cards that I’ve actually designed myself, I still continue to go, “hmm, what the heck can that mean?!” when it comes to applying the images to the questions that I have. Reading is a whole other ballpark; I’m no longer drawing and painting, but trying to see things in a different light and writing down notes and readings in my tarot journal (or rather, my stack of lined sheets of paper that’s usually a mess.) But it’s definitely been an interesting road so far, and it’s surprising the kind of insight I can find when it comes from my own pictures. I don’t think I’ll ever get over the fact that this deck is real. I better not wake up and find that this has all been a dream, or I’ll be so mad!
I just realized that I painted the Three of Wands before the Ace of Pentacles but I forgot to write about this painting. Time to get to work! There’s a few tarot cards to write about still, but for now I have them uploaded on my DeviantART gallery to share.
I’m pretty late to the game, but I more recently got into Arrested Development and I’m on the second season now. I’m really enjoying this series! This is just one bizarre, psychotic family and the the episodes are clever and entertaining. I’m definitely looking forward to finishing the three seasons and of course the movie in the works. Are there any shows that you’ve more recently gotten into? I’m definitely on the look out for more shows to watch.