The past ten years, a retrospective.
Reasons people don’t by my deck:
1. I have had collectors and beginners look through the images in the Twilight Rabbit Tarot and exclaim they won’t purchase it because they’re looking for a serious deck [too cartoony].
2. I have had Tarot readers skim the deck and hold it or shuffle it with eyes closed and proclaim they won’t purchase it because they cannot feel a presence or energy emanating from it.
3. I have had people say they will not buy it because it’s bad luck, someone must be gifted a Tarot deck.
There have been other reasons given, but these are the most prevalent.
As to seriousness, it took several initial years of research and no less than five years illustrating this deck with an average four and a half to six hours per image. Multiply that by near ninety because I also designed extra versions of some cards. We’re looking at least four hundred hours. Just because my illustrations harken to a cartoony style doesn’t mean I was not serious in its making.
As to feeling a presence in the deck, that’s a spiritual matter. I can confirm at least that I do not stuff ghosts or gods to dwell amongst the cards. I leave that up to the purchaser.
As to people wanting a deck but not having one because their friends won’t buy them for you, it’s not bad luck. Your friends aren’t cheap. They’re not jerks. The people spreading superstition about a deck of illustrated cards are jerks.
I didn’t design this deck to predict the future. You don’t need to have someone buy it for you. You don’t need to wrap it in white silk. You don’t need to imbue it with energy from another accurately useful deck. I’ve heard all these Tarot superstitions and more over the years.
What I do:
I use Tarot to break down a problem I’ve been mulling over and over in my mind so much that I can no longer recognize all of my options. I use Tarot to show me another perspective on a persistent issue. I collect decks because I like the art. I teach Tarot to others to dispel the stigma and myth and introduce this centuries old tradition of cards and games and frauds and stories.
Tarot is fun. But not profitable.
I know I will never turn a profit on this deck. To do that I would have to sell at minimum five hundred and fifty decks. Yes that’s minimum. That’s only breaking even for my hours worked on it. That’s after accounting for cost of production.
I request some empathy when you see a Tarot deck illustrated and sold directly by its author. If you want the deck, buy it. No excuses. This doesn’t just go for the deck I illustrated. It goes for any you hold in your hand and like. They are a project of love and insanity if they made it to completion. Don’t be rude to the deck’s creator. If the rejections I’ve described are any indication, I’m sure others have similar stories and even worse.
And the biggest request of all, knowing it took me more than four hundred hours to design and illustrate this deck, don’t offer me a suggestion on the idea for a Tarot deck you have. That I should design and illustrate it if you aren’t prepared to even by a copy of my current one. Not unless you are prepared to offer me hundreds of dollars in advance to illustrate your idea. I quietly decline these in the way I decline any illustration request by suggesting my remuneration.
I’ve been complimented on how polite I’ve been in person responding to some of the comments made by Tarot enthusiasts over the years. I’ve made recommendations on what they should look at and who they should go to next for their shopping needs without batting an eye. I realize some shoppers don’t even realize I’m the deck’s artist. So I don’t show my feathers ruffled in person. I appear preened and composed.
But I acknowledge I do get frustrated. Not hurt. So it’s easy to not lash out.
I won’t ever say these things in person. A blog or fb post is a better forum for sharing these thoughts. A festival or storefront is for polite chitchat and helpful banter. Not how to shop information.
The reality of my making Tarot decks is this: they are available for sale, made to order, a product I offer. Unless they make me a profit, I will never design another. In many ways, they helped me learn illustration techniques and a side of human superstition I would have otherwise not known. I’m grateful I made them. I’m happy they’re for sale. I really enjoy when someone appreciates the deck and takes it home, the prize they found at the festival…
And in many ways, that’s what makes the deck great. It’s not everyone’s top one hundred favourite thing, it’s a dozen people’s top ten favourite thing. And that’s a good feeling.
Thank you to everyone who has complimented me and bought a deck over the past ten years. Here’s hoping I have beautiful customers like you in the next coming ten.
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