Aeclectic Tarot
Tarot Cards & Reviews Live Tarot Readings Tarot Card Meanings Forum Archive

The Tarot of Bones: A Natural History Themed Deck

  > Aeclectic Tarot Forum > Tarot > Tarot Deck Creation


 
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

High Priestess: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-p...igh-priestess/

This past weekend was my very last vending event of the year, which means I'm free to get back to studio work! I finished up the High Priestess assemblage, which I started a couple of weeks ago. A gray wolf skull rests between a pair of trees while the crescent moon just begins to rise over the horizon.

To me, the High Priestess represents a return to our wild selves. We are mammals, apes, animals--we are Homo sapiens sapiens. We've forgotten that, though, convinced we are above the rest of nature. Unfortunately, this attitude has been detrimental to everyone, ourselves included. We have romanticized the gray wolf as the greatest symbol of wilderness we have in our culture, and we should use that power--not to further destroy, but to reconnect.

And that is why the wolf skull holds the High Priestess' energy--she is beckoning us back to the wilderness and to our deeper selves as animals. We see only the human-specific parts; we ignore the complexity of who we are as whole beings born from billions of years of evolution and experience. If only we reconnected with that ancient heritage, we could change the world for the better--and the High Priestess, in her lupine form, is ready to guide us back to that.
Top   #71
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

Here's the next assemblage: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-p...een-of-swords/

The Queen of Swords has always been a difficult card for me to deal with; in many ways she is my antithesis, head-leading rather than heart-leading. It’s not that I don’t engage in rational thought, but that my emotions are a constant simmering presence on the surface of my existence. However, there are times when her cool head is exactly what I need to keep myself on an even keel.

In order to settle my discomfort with this card, I chose the red-tailed hawk to represent it. The hawk has always been my symbol of the East and all intellectual considerations, and so it made a much better segue into working with the energy of the Queen of Swords. It’s not that hawks can’t be affectionate; rather, they possess great skills in being focused and hunt dispassionately. The goal is not to torture or coddle the prey, merely the practicality of eating and staying alive.

This is not, of course, a real hawk skull. It’s a rather nicely crafted resin replica. As with the other Court cards in the Swords suit, the jaw is detached from the skull to both show the card’s lower standing compared to the Major Arcana, and to symbolize this card’s suit.

This is the 70th assemblage completed; including the Happy Squirrel card, I have nine assemblages left–I bet I can get them done by the end of the year, too!
Top   #72
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

...aaaand the Page of Swords is done! Picture here: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-p...age-of-swords/

When I was first deciding what animals would represent the Court cards, one bird came to mind for the Page of Swords: the raven. Often typecast as a dark, scary being in animal-based tarot sets, frequently playing the part of the Devil, I thought this intelligent, playful bird deserved a chance for a more light-hearted role in my deck. The Page of Swords can be a real chatterbox, quick-minded and full of ideas. Ravens, similarly, can cause quite a ruckus, and with their keen observation of the world and ability to learn fast, they're some of the most adaptable critters out there. Reversed, this card means all talk and no action, and it would be a poor specimen of raven-hood who only croaked in the face of a problem and didn't follow it up with some solution

This is, of course, a resin replica of a raven skull since the real deal isn't legal to own. Also, uniquely among the Court cards he keeps his jaw intact rather than separate, since speech is such a crucial part of what makes him himself. The skull is turned to the side to show off his "blade", though.

We're up to 72 cards now--just seven left including the Happy Squirrel! Can I finish them all by the end of the year? Wait and see!
Top   #73
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

Ooof--busy Lupa is busy! I've finished a few more assemblages since the last time I posted here:

Sun: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-portfolio/sun/
Moon: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-portfolio/moon/
Page of Cups: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-p.../page-of-cups/

Including the Happy Squirrel, I only have FOUR assemblages left, and all four of them are in varying stages of completion in my workspace! I expect to have them all done by the end of the week.
Top   #74
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

Happy Squirrel: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-p...appy-squirrel/

So. Back when I ran my IndieGoGo campaign in the spring, one of the stretch goals was that I would create a Happy Squirrel card for the Tarot of Bones. We met that goal, and so I added the card into the list of assemblages to create. An in-joke among tarot readers, the Happy Squirrel originated from an early episode of The Simpsons, but has found its way into more than one deck–including the Tarot of Bones! The card has come to represent the “vague and mysterious” elements of tarot–more specifically, the fact that nothing is set and stone and even the most on-point reading is affected by subjective factors. Reversed, it may mean that you’re putting too much emphasis on the outcome of your reading and need to diversify your outlook.

The articulated squirrel skeleton is by the good folks at Custom Cranium, who also articulated the snake skeleton for the Magician. Also, I have three assemblages left, two of which are this close to being done--we're coming down to the wire here!
Top   #75
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

....aaand the devil is done as well: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-portfolio/devil/

The animal most commonly associated with the Devil card in tarot decks is the goat, for obvious reasons; other animals chosen for this card are often ones we look down on, such as donkeys, monkeys, or scary black ravens. We see them as being tied to their baser instincts (lust, theft, foolishness), representing the worst that we refuse to see in ourselves. Yet every animal is based in instincts, humans included. And so I decided to take an animal we very frequently romanticize, a resin replica skull of a lion, and show how it, too, can be a symbol of the things we fear in ourselves. For out on the savannah, the lion is not merely an animal to ooh and aah over with a camera. It is dangerous and deadly, and those who live in the same places know to be very careful, particularly at night. There are worse human-animal encounters at home than a raccoon knocking over a garbage can. For people who live on the land, raising livestock or farming, the appearance of a lion–with or without its pride–can be a nightmare come true.

The grassfire is another notable motif; it is all-consuming, and even the lion must run from it. But reversed, this card can symbolize finding a way through the flames to freedom. You may have to dodge the hungry jaws of a lion whose prey has been driven away, but you’ll reach safety if you keep running.

Just two assemblages left–one is done but needs to be photographed, and the other should be done in the next few days. So close!!!!
Top   #76
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

Here's the King of Pentacles: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-p...-of-pentacles/

At nearly four feet high it's the biggest assemblage for the Tarot of Bones! I ended up using an Ikea tabletop a neighbor had left out by the trash this summer as the backboard, and yes, I had a LOT of fun painting it up. I'm hoping this old bison can bring some prosperity to the new year--and hopefully other positive changes as well. This animal was, and still is, incredibly important to many indigenous cultures of the American Plains, each animal providing food, hide and bones that could carry a community for weeks, if not months. The slaughter of the bison was meant to destroy these cultures, and so the reversed King of Pentacles reflects that greed and excess.

Just one...more...assemblage...left! I'm a bit behind on it, as I had some engineering issues I'll discuss later, but I should have no trouble sticking to my promise to have all the assemblages done by the end of 2015. So close!
Top   #77
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

The Lovers: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/otw-portfolio/lovers/

I am pleased to announce that I have just completed the final assemblage for the Tarot of Bones! The Lovers was a tough card to create; in sawing the resin replica albatross skull I bought for it in half, I miscalculated the cut and one half ended up with a seriously truncated beak, which I then had to painstakingly resculpt, and both needed repainting. However, this actually worked out better, as it allowed me to give each half a distinct personality, inspired by this video of the mating dance of Galapagos albatrosses. I surrounded them with a variety of shiny stones on a verdant green background; Galapagos albatrosses tend to nest on rocky shores with little vegetation, and I thought this pair deserved more luxurious accommodations. It's an idealized situation for an idealized card, though when reversed it can call up conflict, chaos, and blame-laying all around.

So now that the assemblages are done, what's next? My production schedule at http://www.thetarotofbones.com/production-schedule/ goes into some detail of the steps still remaining. The next thing I need to do is put the finishing touches on the Tarot of Bones book manuscript and get it sent off to an editor. Beyond that, I need to take the final photos of the assemblages for the deck, since the photos currently on the site are just "Hey, look what I made!" shots. I admit I'm somewhat intimidated by the photography end of things, since I am an amateur at best. But I have a lot of people giving me good suggestions and tips to help me through the learning curve.

This means I still have many hours of work ahead of me, taking and editing and laying out the photos into card templates for the printer. As I am not using the remaining money from the first IndieGoGo campaign for living expenses, I look at this time and effort as an investment in the future. There will be a second IndieGoGo campaign starting in February; it will give those who missed out on the first one a chance to chip in, and it will help raise funds for the substantial printing and shipping costs for the final deck and book. In the meantime, if you want to help me offset the time I'm not able to put toward more immediate income, you can check out my books (http://www.thegreenwolf.com/books) and art (http://thegreenwolf.etsy.com) for sale.

Despite the huge amount of work still ahead of me, I'm really, really excited about hitting this milestone a day ahead of schedule (especially since I didn't get started until halfway through January 2015). Producing 79 elaborate pieces of artwork in a year, on top of my usual art production, writing efforts, and other creative projects, was a really massive endeavor, and there were times I was worried I wouldn't have all the pieces done on time. But here I am, all done, even if I did save the pieces with the more confounding engineering challenges for the very end
Top   #78
LupaGreenwolf  LupaGreenwolf is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 23 Dec 2014
Location: OR
Posts: 124
LupaGreenwolf 
Citizen

Great news, everyone! The Tarot of Bones Spring 2016 IndieGoGo Campaign is LIVE!!!!!! It's at https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/t...gn/x/9997962#/

You've got 60 days to back the campaign and get all sorts of cool perks--prints, a Tarot of Bones reading, jewelry made from bones left over from the assemblages, and of course the Tarot of Bones deck and book when they come out later this year.

Why a second campaign? Well, I had a LOT of people miss out on the first one last year, either because they didn't have the funding to chip in or they didn't hear about it until it was already over. This is a chance for them to back the project and help bring it to fruition. And although last year's campaign was incredibly successful, covering the materials for the assemblages and other associated costs, this campaign will help with the substantial costs of printing and shipping the deck and books once the design work is all completed. It's not my only source of funding, but every contribution helps!

Here are a few very important things to keep in mind:

--Since last year, IndieGoGo has implemented the ability to add shipping charges to physical perks that will be mailed to contributors. This means that, unlike the 2015 campaign, shipping is NOT included in the contribution amounts on the campaign page--they'll be added during the checkout process. I apologize in advance to non-U.S. backers for the higher shipping costs: earlier this year the post office raised international postage rates significantly higher than they were before.

--Some of the new perks, like bone jewelry and readings, are offered on their own, as well as in packages with the Tarot of Bones deck and book. This is so that backers of the 2015 campaign can get in on them if they so choose, without having to get a second deck and book. Please read all perk descriptions carefully before making your contribution! You CAN get more than one perk package, but you will need to make one individual contribution per perk package (and yes, that means going through the entire process each time--thank you for your patience!)

--Can't contribute right now? That's okay! You can still help by spreading the link around; here's a convenient shortened link: http://igg.me/at/tarotofbones2016

Many, many thanks for your generosity and help, both last year and now! Let's make this happen!
Top   #79
gregory's Avatar
gregory  gregory is offline
Cat on a cold stone roof
 
Join Date: 01 Jan 2004
Location: The world of the things that could have been.
Posts: 72,249
gregory 
Cat on a cold stone roof

gregory's Avatar

I do wish you had run with kickstarter rather than indiegogo. I and others here have been burned before in indiegogo flexible funding projects...

I shall have to think very hard about this
Top   #80


 


 


Tarot Cards & Reviews Free Tarot Readings Tarot Books Tarot Card Meanings Forum Archive
Aeclectic Tarot Forum Links
· Tarot
· Tarot Special Interest
· Beyond Tarot
· Forum Library

Aeclectic Tarot Categories
· Angel Decks
· Dark & Gothic Decks
· Goddess Decks
· Fairy Decks
· Doreen Virtue Decks
· Beginner Decks
· Cat Decks
· Pagan & Wiccan Decks
· Ancient Egyptian Decks
· Celtic Decks
· Lenormand Decks
· Rider-Waite Decks
· Marseilles Decks
· Thoth Decks
· Oracle Decks
· List All Decks
· Popular Tarot Decks
· Available Decks
· Tarot Books
· What's New

The Aeclectic Tarot Forum closed permanently on July 14th, 2017. The public threads remain online as a read-only archive and resource. More information on our decision can be found here. Thank you for being a part of our active community over the past seventeen years.

Copyright © 1996 - 2017 Aeclectic Tarot. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy. Contact us.