Interviews with Deck Creators

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  • Enchanted Gypsy

Updated: 2 days ago



Our latest interview is with Charlotte Mui. She is the creator of the L'Œil de L'Âme Tarot deck. L'Œil de L'Âme, means 'third eye' in French, and refers to both the intuitive elements within each card as well as the method in which you need to read them.

The cards, based on the RWS deck, are delicately illustrated with watercolour on paper over the course of two years and are the illustrative manifestations of how Charlotte views the world.


To back this intuitively inspired deck, click here:


Kickstarter - L'Œil de L'Âme Tarot


Where in the world do you call home?


I was born in Hong Kong and have lived here all my life.


What was your first experience with Tarot and when did you fall in love with it?


I was fifteen when I first discovered my aunt’s tarot decks and other occult goodies hidden away in the back of a shelf. Out of curiosity and a love for the occult, I taught myself to read them using the Rider-Waite-Smith deck and the accompanying tarot books. Since I am an artist, I loved that you could tell stories and see your own life reflected through visual imagery and link them up to form narratives.


What made you want to create your own Tarot deck? What was your inspiration?


Since I encountered tarot decks rather early, I’ve also spent more time reading them and learning about the imagery - however, I couldn’t feel at ease with the Rider-Waite-Smith deck as they didn’t resonate with me as much. So it’s been my dream since 2010 to create my own deck and I’ve been playing around with my own reimaginations for years before I finally decided to complete the full deck design nearly a decade later.


Aside from your own deck, do you have a favourite deck? If so, which one?


I do have to admit despite the slack I give the Rider-Waite-Smith deck, the original does have its own pedestal. However I also love The Universal Celtic Tarot by Floreana Nativo, but it’s mostly because it was gifted to me by my partner so there’s a bit more of a sentimental thing.


Do you have a favourite card (either from your deck or just the card in general). If so, why is it your favourite?


From my own deck, I love The Fool and The World, which are the first and last cards I painted of the Major Arcana, so I’m not sure if it’s a sentimentality thing again. The cards represent both the beginning and the end of a journey and it certainly represented an emotional journey for me in 2019.


We are living in such crazy times. How has the pandemic affected your creativity?


Not much really. I feel for everyone and I’ve also spiralled into some rather dark times during the beginning of the pandemic but here in Hong Kong, it’s been a roller coaster ride since the beginning of 2019 that everything’s kind of just smushed together. Also, being raised in a city like Hong Kong, we’ve just been adapting nearly every moment of our lives so I think I’m also rather numb to the crazy by now. That actually sounds sad now that I’ve written it.


What have been your challenges in creating this deck?


Nearly every step was a challenge until I overcame it while creating this deck haha! It’s my first large scale project in which I committed a year and a half to painting all of the cards while trying to juggle life and a full time job, so not only was finding time to work on it a struggle, I’m the type to make a lot of revisions with my work in which I can have up to 5 different watercolour renditions of the same card. But right now, my biggest challenge is to find a printing company that I love and trust to print these cards -- I have a back-up printer and an extremely expensive high-end printer if things don’t work out but neither are my first choices. So I’m still on the search to find a way to manufacture this labour of love.


The deck is unique in that the major arcana are very colourful, the minor arcana (Aces to Tens) are black and white, and the court cards are monochromatic. Why did you choose to design the cards in this way?


The colours reflect the way I read the cards, where you could essentially interpret everything you need to know from the Major Arcana cards and the Minor Arcana are there as clarifications and for more details. The Court Cards (or Face Cards) are in a league of their own in which I often use to read personalities -- in order to tie in the link between the Major and Minor Arcana, I also intentionally selected colours that match the Court Cards with their respective suites. (Red/Fire/Wands, Blue/Water/Cups, Green/Earth/Pentacles, Purple/Air/Swords).


How will you celebrate when the deck is finally published?


I’m definitely going to take a very long nap first, then I’m gonna enjoy a nice meal with my family and friends who’ve been so supportive through out these two years.


What is on offer for people who pledge?


I have several reward tiers that are groupings of the deck itself, stickers, postcards, readings, original paintings, and a customised portrait of you or a loved one painted in the same style as the L’Oeil de L’Ame tarot deck.


To add this delicate, watercolour tarot deck to your collection, pledge here:


Kickstarter - L'Œil de L'Âme Tarot







  • Enchanted Gypsy


Our latest interview is with Rozenn Grosjean, about his new lenormand deck - The Magpie's Lenormand. This deck is a hand-painted Lenormand deck inspired by Rozenn's deep love of nature and animals. Lenormand is a specific type of cartomancy, similar but different to the tarot you probably know from the Rider-Waite-Smith deck. While RWS has dense symbology and mysticism, lenormand is more personal, direct, and simplistic. It feels almost conversational, and better suited for daily life.


The Kickstarter for this deck closes in less than 24-hours, so you'll need to get in quick to snag one of these decks:


Kickstarter - The Magpie's Lenormand


Where in the world do you call home?


I live with my family and cats in France, near Lyon. But I’d call home everywhere my cat Nouga lives

.

What was your first experience with lenormand and when did you fall in love with it?


My first experience with the Lenormand was the Seven Spheres app. Every now and the, I’d draw cards for a reading with Arcturus (the writer for the deck’s guide). We would then talk about our results, and I loved the introspection you’d do while reading cards.


What made you want to create your own lendormand deck? What was your inspiration?


I haven’t found a Lenormand deck that resonated very well with me and thought, you know what, let’s create one! I wanted a deck that reflects nature even more than the traditional deck. When searching for inspiration, I would read Arc’s guide and let the words lead me instead of the card’s title.

Aside from your own deck, do you have a favourite deck? If so, which one?


Not… really, but I like the ethereal look of the Seven Sphere Lenormand and the very simplistic imagery of the Green Glyphs Lenormand!

Do you have a favourite card (either from your deck or just the card in general). If so, why is it your favourite?

I really like the Scythe card, it is going to sound strange since it’s not the most "positive" card, but I am very proud of the representation with the barn owl!

We are living in such crazy times. How has the pandemic affected your creativity?


I won’t lie, it was -and is- a difficult time, but I’m glad I have friends I could call and play with! Also I’m very glad my cat was here so I wasn’t completely alone ♡.

What have been your challenges in creating this deck?


Finding a look I liked for the cards that will work for the whole deck! I had to restart the project so many times, but I’m glad I did not abandon it.

I love the Chrysalis, Caterpillar and Moth cards, and how they line up to represent their progression. What inspired you to create such a unique concept?


Thank you! I wanted to keep a card close the Child, and the Caterpillar was a very good representation for beginnings. Following this idea, the Chrysalis and Moth was logical.

How will you celebrate when the deck is finally published?


I’m so honoured this deck has received this much success. I’d love to go on a long hike with my friends and horse to take a bit of time for myself.

What is on offer for people who pledge?


My favourite pledge is without hesitation the Magpie’s Box, I’m so happy with the result of the magnetic box housing the deck and guide, it creates such a lovely product. I wanted to offer the deck without the box too, to have a very affordable pledge.


To add this gorgeous lenormand deck to your collection, pledge here:


Kickstarter - The Magpie's Lenormand







  • Enchanted Gypsy


Our latest interview is with Chris Leech, about his new 80s music inspired tarot deck - a time when music was as important as life and love and as serious as a bad haircut. Chris is the owner of Welkin Tarot and has also produced The Shakespeare Tarot, The Beatles Tarot, The Charles Dickens Tarot, The Golden Age of Hollywood Tarot, and The Alfred Hitchcock Tarot, which can all be viewed on his website - Welkin Tarot


The New Wave Tarot is a standard 78 card Tarot deck based on the New Wave music of the early 1980s. The Companion Key, unlike a standard LWB, is a full-size 6x9 trade-paper book and it includes in-depth information about the musicians referenced and a colour reproduction of each card.


The New Wave Tarot deck & book is a limited edition set of 100, so you'll have to get in quick to get your hands on one of these limited decks:


Kickstarter - New Wave Tarot


Where in the world do you call home?


I have lived many places in my life – England, Germany, Greece, India – but I now find myself living where I grew up as a child – a small parcel of land on Vancouver Island, Canada. My wife and I live on the property with my parents; she has a small studio space for her jewellery making business (White Raven Craft), while I have both a music and an art studio which I built myself. On a deeper level, I make an effort to feel at home wherever I am, even though at times it feels I'm at home nowhere.

What was your first experience with oracles and / or tarot and when did you fall in love with it?


My first hands-on experience with tarot was through a close friend of mine, 40 years my senior, with a profound knowledge of myth, literature, and the Perennial Philosophy. My own interest grew very slowly over 20 years, and I came at it mostly sideways, from psychological, artistic, and esoteric vantages. When I really became enthralled was when I started looking at the tarot from the inside out, doing experimental readings on history, philosophy, and literature, and then actually creating whole new tarot decks from the ground up. I guess I really fell in love with it when I realised the tarot is an instrument of creation.

What made you want to create your own tarot deck? What was your inspiration?


I began by wondering about what made the tarot tick, and what made it work. Just as the subconscious uses dream imagery to evoke feelings and express itself to the conscious mind, the tarot is a set of principles to evoke thoughts and feelings about the physical world. With the I Ching, pennies or sticks or almost anything can be used as long as the fundamental principles are adhered to; the same is true with tarot. I became fascinated by this in and of itself, but also with seeing what kind of things could be used to create a tarot, and then what in turn would these new tarots have to say about reality, given their new and unique perspective. I became something of a Shakespeare scholar late in life and his works were my first real inspiration, to create a working tarot deck based on his characters and scenarios. I made The Shakespeare Tarot in 2016, and I continue to be amazed and inspired by its insights and uncanny accuracy.

Aside from your own deck, do you have a favourite deck? If so, which one?


No, I don't have a favourite. I find a good 99% of decks to be terrible. I use the RWS deck as a touchstone, as a universal reference point because it has become the Rosetta Stone of tarots. Of the new decks I've seen, I have been the most impressed by The Carnival at the End of the World.

Do you have a favourite card (either from your deck or just the card in general). If so, why is it your favourite?


I have a few favourite cards – first is The Moon. I respect its mystery, its danger. Maybe it's because I'm a Pisces with my moon in Cancer and my ascending sign Scorpio. I also like The High Priestess, representing as she does Sophia and the Holy Spirit. The Star's grace is also hard to beat. Of the pips I like the 7 of Cups. And full confession: I don't care for the aces and am openly hostile towards the courts.

We are living in such crazy times. How has the pandemic affected your creativity?


I am something of a recluse and COVID cases where I live are quite low, so in all honesty I have been lucky enough to be very little affected by the pandemic. That said, in the first 6 months of this year, I wrote and recorded 5 albums for my band Printers Bloc (printersbloc.org), and in the last 6 months I have created 2 new tarot decks and written their companion books.

What have been your challenges in creating this deck?


Essentially, I made this deck as a fun and welcome relief from the hard work of making the much more serious deck, The Numinous Tarot. The first question I faced was should the deck be made up of the New Wave music that has stood the test of time, whether for myself or other musicians or the public generally, or whether I should include musicians who were less memorable - or whom most of us wish we could forget - and thereby reflect the era as it really was? Connected to this question was how obscure should the deck get, and if I limited the bands I countenanced, would there be enough variety to reflect the panoply of characters and situations needed to properly comprise a working tarot? For the sake of accuracy, function, and the sense of sometimes embarrassing fun the early 80s embodied, I tried to keep my curating to a minimum.

How did you decide which song should represent which card?


This was one of the more enjoyable tasks, especially since many of the choices were made expressly for the fun of it. An example is the 8 of Water (Cups), where the figure on the RWS card is leaving; I chose I Ran (So Far Away) by A Flock of Seagulls. Of course, there are other factors – details about the life of the musicians, aspects of their persona or how people reacted to the song, etc. The court cards aren't based on songs but on musicians as archetypes. The Majors aren't songs either, but musicians who personified a major archetype such as The Fool (Devo) or an event or situation which encapsulated a theme, as with Live Aid representing Justice.

How will you celebrate when the deck is finally published?


I will celebrate by immediately starting work on completing my half-finished project, The Numinous Tarot. Not only am I not much for celebrating but one of my greatest pleasures in life is creating things, so to be able to see a project through to completion is actually, for me, a form of celebration.

What is on offer for people who pledge?


I like to keep it simple – I find some of the things offered by Kickstarter campaigns border on gimmickry. I prefer to offer the best value for money to people that I can, along with the assurance that backers can receive exactly what they paid for quickly and with a reliable standard of quality. The only offer I have made is to sign the book, which some backers have asked for in the past, and a contribution amount which sees the backer receive both The New Wave Tarot and my previous music-based deck, The Beatles Tarot. For anyone who's interested, I've “offered” a playlist of songs featured in the deck, which costs nothing to enjoy: https://chrisleech.wixsite.com/newwavetarot


To add this limited edition deck to your collection, pledge here:


Kickstarter - New Wave Tarot







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