Drawings, Drafts and Getting Down to it.

The high Priestess WIPFirst Drafts

I recently started following a few Tarot study groups and through the amazing networking, stumbled upon loads of info that will help me with producing my tarot designs.  This new-found knowledge has led me to believe that I WILL get this project done!

The power of connecting with other people is what is going to get this project done!

Although it may appear as boring as sin to a non artist, but the most important thing is to get the scale of the images right.  They need to be all the same size so that the continuity in the images is correct. Secondly if I do the paintings too large, when they are reduced down to a card size they will become much smaller and a lot of the detail will be lost. The third thing about size is that I need to figure out if I want the borders to be incorporated within the image or added on as an extra.  I have always preferred to go with the border-less cards, but do not want the title of the card to be lost or superimposed on the image.  Therefore I think I will incorporate it into the design.

The images above are drawn using a template from one of the card printing companies.  I’ve enlarged it but I still feel the drawing is too ‘small’ to work on as a painting.  I cannot get the modelling I want to achieve in the face.  I will have to scale the card up to what is workable for me. The beginning stages are so tedious….I feel something isn’t quite right.

I’m already doing a repeat of these pieces as the first ones were done with Winsor and Newton Drawing Ink with details in a black drawing pen.  The inks have faded leaving the pen drawing in Indian Ink stand out too much.  (These were done about 30 years ago).

As my style has changed and developed in the last number of years,  I need to recreate the card designs again.

I am very aware that my journey and experience of the tarot has changed since my younger days as an artist.  However I do feel that the essence of what I did many years ago still stands strong and I will use these images to build upon.  Once you have a good idea, it is sensible to carry it on.  The elements in the foreground of these two cards are very similar and show the influences of The Aquarian Tarot  by David Palladini, which I adored back then.  Still do, but I have more to add from my own personal experience of the energies of these cards.

The re-working of my original design of The High Priestess shows a mature woman, almost nun-like, yet not.  She is mature, but still young.  She wears the blue mantel of the Madonna, yet she has no children (known to us).  Could she possibly be  Mary Magdalene?

She hold the mystery of time in her left hand symbolised by the crystal ball.  In her right hand, the one in control, is the Torah, the history and law of the Jewish people and is said to be the blueprint of all creation.  We would normally associate the right hand and right side of the body with our masculine side and the side that is ‘in control’, while the left side is the feminine creative side.  However, we now know that the right side of the brain controls creativity, while the left side rules our language centres and our logic.  In the painting, the woman sits with her hands crossed, the right hand appearing on the left and the left appearing on the right.  Maybe she is pointing out that all life is a paradox? That nothing is as it seems.  Her crossed wrists also bars the way in, telling us that we have to do something in order to cross into her world. There is a lot of mystery within this card. She intrigues us, and yields her secrets slowly.

The Magician yields the power of the Universe and has the will to drive this energy into his creations on earth.







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