Le Tarot Tournant (Bill's Tarot)


I have been hesitant to start a thread here, as I've never been too keen on publicly discussing work in progress, and I'm not exactly sure of what's ahead. But since a few people have asked about the background of my deck, and a few others have asked about its future...
Here I am.
And what better day to start a creation thread than January 1st?

I designed this deck long ago as a project for Arthur Corwin's "Math in Art: The Psychology of Symbolic Perception" class at The Cooper Union in New York. Pencil drawings of 22 majors and four queens were done sometime between 1982 and '83. The final watercolors of the majors were then finished afterwards, mostly in 1983, with the last two finished in '84. The finished paintings were included in my senior exhibition, "Eye and Mind" in March, 1984.

At that time, there were few options for color reproduction, so I made two sets of trimmed out color photos. One set of photos was sent to Stuart Kaplan, who was kind enough to include it in his "Encyclopedia of the Tarot, Volume III" as "Bill Wolf Tarot" pictured on pp 549.

Then it sat for a while.

In 2000, I did an edition of 12 copies, to give away to a few of my friends. It was printed in 6 color inkjet, on Strathmore acid free bristol, with a new back design that was also used on the box. The image quality, and general look and feel was very true to the original paintings.

I also sold a few of the extras from that edition on ebay, so they would get out into the world. I met some very nice people that way. While I was at it, I also sold a xerox prototype deck of the line drawings that was done back in '83, and a b&w xerox prototype of the finished paintings that was done around '84. I suppose I regret losing those, but they had been sitting around for 16 years, and it seemed like some collector might like them. That turned out to be true.

And now, after a long break, as a few of you have already heard, I am about a year into creating pips for a full deck.

If I ever finish, the deck can finally assume its proper name:
Le Tarot Tournant.

I'll write some more later.
In the meantime, Happy New Year!


May 1984 : 22 trumps.
Oct 3, 2011 : 40 pips.
Nov 8, 2012 : Various title & cover cards; Various back patterns.
Nov 11, 2012 : 16 courts.
Deck complete.
Jan 22, 2013 : First printed working proof decks done.
Sept 22, 2013 : Deck revisions completed.
Jan 6, 2014 : Prototype first-draft book & prototype boxes completed.
Mar 20, 2014: Two fully-realized working proof copies presented for review.
Mar 2, 2016: Advance Special Ed. Decks received.
Mar 12, 2016 Special Ed. folder.
Mar 20, 2016: Website launched- https://nopotatopress.wordpress.com/portfolio/le-tarot-tournant-2/
Jul 14, 2017: This creation thread closed- Aeclectic Forum shutdown.


OnePotato, please finish! They're beautiful! I love watercolours, and you are so very talented. Thankyou so much for sharing, and please, please go on doing the same. I'm sure you know you'll have ample support (read: pressure!) from folks here :) Just gorgeous. I'm gonna look again . . .})

\m/ Kat


I will definitely be watching this one! Can't wait Bill!


So stunning they took my breath away. The colors are so vivid! I would love to see these up close so I could take in all of the detail in these cards. Just lovely!!



oooh i really like... :D
they are amazing...what great colours thankyou for sharing...



Well, you know I'm a fan.

I'd like if you'd say more about the imagery in the majors. I have the impression that there's a lot of "theory" in those trumps--for example, you wrote me that your Hermit was dressed in winter clothing because winter is the darkest time of year (and there he is with his lil' lantern). Any more reflections on the images you'd like to share (hint, hint, nudge, nudge).


OnePotato said:
If I ever finish, the deck can finally assume its proper name:
Le Tarot Tournant.

What an interesting name. Tournant? The Tarot Turns? It seems to hold shades of the dance of the Universe or at least our planet! From what Debra has said, you have incorporated astrology into your very attractive Majors deck. I liked the pip sample and can also see some astrology in the image. As you may have gathered from some of my posts- if you have read them- I think Tarot is astrological. I look forward to seeing your work as you go. You have a dab hand at water colour, which I know is not an easy medium. Well done! I look forward to the 'more later' Happy New Year to you too! ~Rosanne


Am I blind? Astrology? Where where?


Sorry Debra I meant the cycle of the year- more than Astrology. Like the Books of Hours. ~Rosanne


How I understand that hesitancy! But thanks for posting the background info - I've been curious about Bill's Tarot for while now, and thought it must have been published somewhere too obscure to find. Keep going with the pips!