THE ARCANE TAROT DECK

FIRSTED

The Arcane Tarot deck was self-published in a first edition of 50 numbered sets at the Vernal Equinox 2017. Printed in full colour on 300 gsm card and housed in a signed and numbered presentation folder, this edition represents the first physical incarnation of the Arcane Tarot and has been three years in the making. Each image was conceived, designed and hand-drawn by myself before being digitised and formatted for printing. The numbering follows the earliest known list of Tarot Trumps - from the manuscript Sermones De Ludo Cum Aliis- and therefore varies quite significantly from the widely used Marseille and Rider Waite numbering. It is the only set of Trumps I am aware of that follows this 15th Century numeration.

In November 2017, Justice, from this set, was published in the American book Witch Ikon - Witchcraft In Art & Artefact (Three Hands Press). This marks my debut as a published artist and I'm intensely proud to have my work featured in print alongside that of some of the most inspiring occult luminaries of ancient and modern history.

At the time of writing a handful of first edition sets remain available, please contact for further information. 

 

arctarotdeck
ABOVE: FOUR TRUMPS FROM THE ARCANE TAROT DECK, 2017 (c)

As most Tarot enthusiasts will know, creating your own deck is the ultimate way to forge a strong relationship with the cards, something I may have sensed at the age of 10 when I created my first Trump designs in felt tip pen (!). I only completed a few - The Wheel of Fortune was certainly one of them - but the seed of something greater had been sown.

A second, more elaborate, attempt to complete a set of Trumps came a decade later, in 1995. These, like most modern Tarots, were heavily influenced by the Rider Waite deck and a full set of 22 Trumps were completed in pen and ink. I see these as an interesting reflection of how I was seeing the cards at the time and some of these early designs have been developed in the Arcane Tarot.

A third, more serious attempt to create a deck came in 2011. At this stage I had been working professionally as a full-time reader for five years and was finding that no published deck completely satisfied my own understanding of the Tarot.

I considered the Rider Waite deck excellent for its pictorial Minor Arcana (though I have issues with it being 'quite' so pictorial!), but felt that the Trumps suffered from massive bastardisation from the authentic medieval designs. With this in mind I decided to create a set of my own Trumps that I felt were authentic representations of the earliest designs, correcting certain errors that had crept in to the Marseille designs (eg the Hermit's hourglass becoming a lantern) and attempting to create a set of stark designs that stood somewhere between the earliest known Italian Tarots and the slightly later, possibly French (not as foolish a statement as it sounds), designs known as the 'Marseille' Tarots.

Having completed 21 Trumps and a handful of Minor Arcanas by the time I moved from London in 2013, I was spurred to see what I could do with these crude designs if I actually sat down and treated each Trump as an individual piece of Art. So, that September I set to work on The Devil.

Pleased with the result, I moved on to the rest of the Trumps and am proud to say that the final set of 22 images - The Arcane Tarot - were completed in March 2017.