Tarot cards are just Ink & Paper.
The true magic comes from the connection to the symbols that grab our attention from the pages. It’s a book without a binding, one that is constantly morphing its plot-lines and stories. How we decipher those stories determine the impact it’ll have on our lives.
As a deck creator I’ve dealt with a lot when it comes to expectations around cardstock, finish, boxes, edging… physical attributes and aesthetic content.
As an artist I will also take things under advisement, but ultimately what I create pours from my heart onto that page for others to decipher later. When creating a deck I can not be overly concerned with the opinions of the outside world, to do this would halt any and all creativity.
Right now this deck belongs completely to me. It hasn’t been put under the scrutiny of actual publication or the lens of pre-orders and perks. It’s still mine because no one can hold it and judge it— no one gets to view it as a whole. Right now I am choosing which images to share…
I created a makeshift version of Nested Tarot out of regular matte presentation paper, it’s thin, flimsy and uneven. The images are the key- the paper is merely a plate to serve up these layers. I did this with Pocket of Peers too, my rough draft— it shows me how the pieces of art becomes a whole body of work. It’s still incomplete but I like to see the moving parts of the process as they unfold. Showing me what needs to be tweaked and what is ultimately balanced.
Being a creator of anything is daring to share vulnerability. There’s beauty in this moment, as long as l keep it close, it’s still mine…however, I have always liked to share, so one day in the near future it will be released. Art needs to be seen and shared, it desires to spark up symbolic conversations with new people that I will never meet. I am merely the conduit as I step to the ledge of release and fear. Fear for when I allow it to fly out to the world. All of the doubts creep in, putting up shields to protect myself when people get their hands on a piece of my heart.
Will they like it? Will they hate it? What will they pick apart? How will they judge me…. What if, how, why….
Sure I could make this one off and call it a day— this is a state of mind that all creators have and struggle with. I remember that real art exists only when others get to experience it too.
Art is the language of my heart and my heart needs to speak and share. To connect and expand our world.
“Ink & Paper” embroidered bag by a sister that tarot brought into my life: Jenna Diaz of Moonlit Faye … if I had never shared Sawyer’s Path- If I kept it wrapped in the folds of my heart—she wouldn’t be in my world… and I don’t want to think of that scenario. This un-bound book added new chapters to our now combined story.
The Nested Tarot is still in this safe space.
A place where I can enjoy carving the images into the shape of Nesting Dolls. A shape that I have explored for years as a tattoo artist. The way this form can open up and expose what is inside.
They are merely decorated containers that help us get to the root or seed of what is going on. There will be people who bring up origins and lore surrounding the shape and that is their right to do so, however I am paying homage to how it has shown up in my life and my origin story with the shape. The more I carve and print these images, the more I think of the layers that are found within each card, with those familiar containers. What you see on the surface invites you to dive deeper, open up and reveal. That’s what these shapes and images mean for me.
Each time we take a dance within the realm of Ink & Paper the symbols will morph and change, revealing new scenery and worlds to explore. I for one am grateful that so many creators take a turn time and time again in the land of Tarot. It’s story will never end as it’s constantly being revisited, renewed and rewritten.
*an abridged version of this article was originally shared on vero.co/Jamiesawyer_336 if you’d like to follow more of my social media consider joining me at VERO and Patreon as Meta continues to fall apart this is where I will be.