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Join Date: 04 Oct 2002
Location: Rose City, emerald Oregon
Posts: 1,179
rota 

Great thread! I hope new card artists will stop here and absorb some of your wisdom. It really does take forever and a day to complete a tarot deck, and longer than that to figure out distribution. That funny deck idea you all had over dinner seemed like a sure winner while you were sipping wine, but the cool idea has to hold up through the whole long process of deck construction.

And so few of us are both deck writers/planners/designers and deck artists. It's kind of sad to see a good deck idea done in by poorly handled artwork, or great artwork wasted on a lame idea.

If I were to give any over-arching advice to a person who just HAS to create a deck, it would be to plan out their entire 78-card deck before they ever start sketching. Like any edifice, a solid and comprehensive card-based divination system is built on a solid plan.

The plan should be worked out in writing first, perhaps in a spiral-bound notebook. Each card should be written out in words first, and only when every card is figured out in symbols, colors, poses, numbers, titles, shapes, (and, incidentally, decide on a printer and a template) -- only then should a person start creating the artwork.

I know it seems backward, but that's what experience has taught me.

That's just my two cents. It's just that I see such a lot of good intentions go bust, when a little pre-flight planning would make the whole project not only go easier in the execution, but work better in the actual reading.
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