Creating “The Seven of Mugs” – The David Bowie / Thomas Jerome Newton-Inspired Tarot Card

Creating “The Seven of Mugs” – The David Bowie / Thomas Jerome Newton-Inspired Tarot Card

Posted by on Jun 21, 2015 in Creative Journey, Minor Arcana, Stories | 0 comments

A Great Start to Another Year of Art The card I last completed was The Seven of Mugs (traditionally Cups). I had a pretty ambitious concept for this one that has been stuck in my head for two years, and it ended up taking about seven cards worth of effort to complete. But, for me, it was worth it. It was the project that launched my year and showed me just how far I could go with my art. The Original Concept So, the concept. I had always envisioned that this card would depict a guy watching a series of televisions, in which each presented a scene relating to the concept of the cup. The character would be present in each television, living out that particular story. In the foreground he’d be witnessing the options, and in the background he’d be experiencing them. The concept made me think of a scene played by David Bowie in The Man Who Fell to Earth. The character, Thomas Jerome Newton, sitting in an old gynecological chair, mesmerized by a wall of televisions.  Ground Control to Minor Leo Those close to me know what a huge Bowie fan I am. I got a huge kick out of the idea of paying homage to one of my heroes in a card. However, I was clear I wanted it to be an homage, not a direct rip-off of the idea. I was contemplating who to invite to star in the piece, and when pulling cards on the options I had in mind, it became clear that a particular individual would be a perfect choice. I sent Leo Daedalus, an impresario and performing artist who runs a show called The Late Now, a Facebook message to invite him right before the new year. My husband and I had attended his shows for awhile and loved them. Leo and I met when I was invited to the show a couple of years back to present my 2nd Edition Majors Deck and talk a bit about the project. Since then, Leo and I had gotten to know each other a bit and I sensed he’d get a kick out of being a part of the piece. He responded to my message requesting his participation with an emphatic yes. As our conversation unfolded, he told me something really fun. (By now, I am never surprised by these sorts of happenings.) Apparently, he had been thinking obsessively about the movie The Man Who Fell to Earth for the last month, and especially about the scene I described. He had been wondering how to incorporate an homage to this scene into his own creative endeavors. The Concept & Style Come Together Well, it was a no-brainer that we were destined to collaborate on this piece, and we began with much enthusiasm. It was an auspicious beginning that was an indication of...

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This is Not a New Year’s Resolution. (It’s an Artist’s Revolution.)

This is Not a New Year’s Resolution. (It’s an Artist’s Revolution.)

Posted by on Jan 3, 2015 in Creative Journey | 1 comment

Last year didn’t go quite as expected. Not bad, overall… Let’s just call it, “Beautifully tumultuous.” When I started this project, I was gung ho to finish it in record time. I mean, I did most of the work for the Majors in a matter of months. Leapt tall websites in a bound, ran two fundraising campaigns (honestly, much to the chagrin of my bank account as my passion project often took precedence over finding client work). Amazing things happened and everything worked out, even as challenges abounded. When 2014 rolled around, I was sure I could whip out half of the minors. No prob! Erm, not so much. But a lot of great things did happen. And some sad things, too. Life wouldn’t be life without ups and downs. And we can find beauty, even in sadness and loss. Early in the year, Jefferson’s mother passed away. It was a tough time, and having lost my mother when I was in my early 20s, I could empathize with him, and was very sad to lose this lovely woman in our lives. Then, not long after, one of my dearest kitty compatriots, Kiekie, was diagnosed with lymphoma and had to be put to rest. Times were tough. We were both in grief over these losses and doing our best to find the lessons we could take away from it all. They had taught us so much about how to live life fully. Life soldiered on, as did we, and I guess you could say things took on a sort of seriousness. I felt like I needed to focus some more on working with Jefferson on creating a more stable home and financial life, and that meant really digging in and focusing on my design and web development business. And quite honestly, I am so lucky to have awesome clients to work with, so I don’t mind. It just meant putting art time on the back burner and spending more time in the work-related trenches. It felt right to put something back in the financial and energetic coffers after putting so much energy and so many resources into the creation of the deck the year before. We needed to have a feeling of more careful steering on a well-paved road and less roller coaster ride. However, The Portland Tarot just seemed to get more and more exciting as time passed, even though I spent far less time on art last year. I worked the first half of the year on developing a new image for the packaging, to get it ready for retail. I also busted my buns to earn the money to pay for a larger print run, which was oddly more relaxing than trying to run a fundraising campaign. I worked with my promotional priestess, Ailey Hines, to get the deck placed in more stores. I saw web...

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