SKT 3.0, Second Septenary Walk-Through

Are you getting SKT fatigue from all my obsessive posts about this deck? =)

I apologize for being so single-track in all my postings at the moment, but that’s just where my mind is at.

I’m amused at how with each edition, I seem to change the same cards over and over. Like here in the second set of Major sevens, once again it’s the Hermit card I revise and the background of the Wheel of Fortune. However, this time around, I did change up my Temperance.

If you watch the above video on YouTube’s platform, timestamp links are in the video description box, so you can skip around from section to section.

This previous post is where you can find the video on the First Septenary of cards. This post is a pictorial walk-through of Keys 1 – 11.

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Walk-Through of Key 1 to Key 11 in SKT III

This will be a walk-through of Keys 1 through 11 from the Major Arcana for the forthcoming third edition of the Spirit Keeper’s Tarot. Please note that I don’t anticipate the deck coming out any time sooner than 2021, and don’t be surprised if it doesn’t come out until 2022. I also won’t be doing pre-orders until the whole deck is done.

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Inspiration and Process for Coloring SKT III; The Emperor Revisited

Yeah, I’m going full-color (sorta– it’ll be a muted palette) for SKT the Third (I’ll be calling it something else, something fancy-shmancy, but for now it’s SKT the Third).

If you click into YouTube to watch the video on that platform, you’ll be able to skip around using the timestamps I’ve provided in the description box.

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SKT the Third, Experimental Trials: Trying Out Full-Color

I made a little video to showcase the evolution of my Lovers card from the SKT, laced with Bach’s Prelude in C Major. =) You can click on that YouTube logo along the bottom bar of the video to enlarge.

Experimenting with color…

Please understand that nothing has been committed to just yet. This is nothing more than an experimental trial, though I’m sharing it with you as an entry in my SKT progress diary. Your honest feedback is welcomed!

Actually, it’s very welcomed. Like the previous shitty-Emperor-card post. You all gave me really good critiques that were specific, detailed, and because of the collective you, I had something tangible to work with as I continued trying to draw a good Emperor card. (It’s still in the works. We’ll revisit Key 4 at a later time.)

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HALP ME WHY CAN’T I DRAW AN EMPEROR?!

Yeah. I needed the title in all-caps. Because I’m screaming at the top of my lungs and yanking at my own hair.

WHY IS DRAWING THE EMPEROR CARD SUCH A STRUGGLE?

For an irrational woo answer to that, I might say maybe it’s because our global collective culture is moving away from dominant-masculinity, and as a feminist I’m certainly not going to cry a river over that shift, but it does mean I’m really, really struggling with tapping in to that masculine energy.

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The Sevens: Tarot Card Meanings

New to this video lecture series?

Start Here

The above-linked Introduction page will give you an overview of what this series is about and provide a course contents listing.

The Sevens is the ninth of seventeen videos in this series. This is the realm of choice, mental reasoning, and philosophical discernment, where:

  • the Seven of Wands is the discernment between fight vs. flight;
  • the Seven of Cups discerns between vice and virtue;
  • the Seven of Swords is risk vs. control; and
  • the Seven of Pentacles/Disks is action vs. non-action.

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Drafting & Tinkering for SKT #3

To quell any confusion, yes, I’m at work on a third edition of the Spirit Keeper’s Tarot. No, not a new deck,  but a new edition of an already existing one, the SKT.

I have not yet arrived at a decision on coloring. Do I want it in sepia? Grayscale with accents of colors? Full color via digital applications? I don’t have any answers. I’m going to give all of the above options a few tries, compare, and see which path is right for SKT the Third.

The images in this post are sepia-toned only because my first order of business is to produce both a black-and-white and also a sepia-toned set of base images to work from. That way I can tinker with both and see which I want to work with when creating the full deck.

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Tarot Deck Piracy and Anti-Chinese Sentiments

See also: 7/07/2020 Edits below

“My legal counsel advised me to never do business with Chinese companies, because all of them will rip off your intellectual property.”

Paraphrased, but an accurate representation of what was said by a very prominent deck creator in our community. She’ll tell you my paraphrase isn’t accurate and that I’ve misrepresented her. She takes issue with me saying she used the word “all.”

I can’t recall if that precise word “all” was ever used, so let’s believe her and say I’m mistaken. She never said “all.” It was me who read into what was absolutely, unequivocally implied in the subtext.

Oh, wait. The below was sent to me, after I started feeling pretty terrible about maybe misconstruing what she had said. I was beginning to second-guess myself, thinking, man, I now feel like crap for thinking she said “all” when she didn’t. Many of her friends were messaging me, privately and publicly, telling me I got her all wrong, I am remembering her words wrong, and she never, ever said “all.”

Some deck creators saw that same post I saw and immediately thought it was problematic and insensitive.

Other deck creators believe she means well, but perhaps she worded her sentiments wrong– let’s chalk this one up to poor word choice. Maybe. But what I’ve seen from her, she is one fine writer.

And still others think I am the one who is way out of line, being overly sensitive, probably because I’m Asian, and poor, poor Karen for getting misunderstood.

I’ll concede that the truth is probably somewhere in that middle “no man’s land” intersecting point of the Venn diagram. I’m not 100% right, but then neither is she.

Here’s the thing. That was not her first offense. From what I have personally witnessed, it was her third. If we consider what the entire community has witnessed, who knows how many times she has repeated this rhetoric.

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Dracxiodos Tarot by Greg Traw

Greg Traw’s Dracxiodos Tarot is a psychedelic experience in a box, and if ever there was a chaos magician’s deck, this would be it. What’s more, Dracxiodos Tarot presents that chaos magician as, first and foremost, the Artist. The only Major Arcanum card to be titled, in fact, is the Artist card, assigned to Key V, classically the Hierophant.

The deck is independently produced and can be purchased directly from the artist here.

Reinforcing that theme of magician/alchemist as artist, the card back design features in the foreground an illustrator’s stylus pen and a paintbrush. Up top, in between the book pages featuring heiroglyphs is a razor blade pen, which I presume was Traw’s instrument of choice in the hand-cut collage works that this deck is comprised of.

By the way, the cards are huge! Above to the right is a deck at standard tarot size, 2.75″ x 4.75″. The Dracxiodos Tarot is 4″ x 8″. It’s a sturdy deck, too, 350 gsm white core cardstock with a matte finish.

The limited edition deck comes in a two-piece keepsake box and has been finished with this really incredible silver holographic edging that reminds me of labradorite.

Card Back Design, first version of Key 0, and First Septenary

Above in the bottom row, second card from the left with the pale green background, is Key V, renamed to The Artist. Every aspect of how this deck has been produced is in itself expressive of where contemporary art is today, and who the contemporary artist is. You’re going to see a global, culturally diverse influence. The point of view and visions are dynamic. Parts of Traw’s work are self-referential. These images are at once full of realism and surrealism.

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Show Me the Numbers: Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing of a Tarot/Oracle Deck

While so many of us are still sheltered in place during the pandemic, I’ve noticed a spike in interest for creating a tarot or oracle deck and selling it. This is particularly relevant to artists and spiritual creatives who are looking into a stream of income that might help them stay afloat through uncertain economic times.

For you, we’ll talk numbers in self-publishing vs. traditional publishing. If this subject matter is really of interest to you, then read on. Don’t just watch the video, because I left a lot out of that video, which I’ll get to in this companion post.

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