As an artist, graphic designer, pagan, and a student of the human animal, tarot encompasses all my passions. I love everything about the tarot, with the possible exception of the lack of a Badass card (although, the Magician suits nicely as a substitute in most decks). Basically, I’m a tarot whore. No apologies. Gotta catch ’em all! (Except an actual Pokemon deck. The line has to be drawn somewhere.)
Listed in no particular order.
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Decks I Proudly Own
学生塔罗牌 (Student Tarot)
I don't know much about this deck, which just made it more "mysterious" lol. The stained-glass style imagery and color/element coded minor arcana grabbed me immediately. The size of the cards are roughly 2 x 4 inches (49 x 97 mm), which also intrigued me.
Don't judge me. I had to. For the love of Ororo Monroe, it's a fugging comic-book deck! Besides, it was an auction sale. Hail eBay.
“The Fradella Adventure Tarot is a comic-style deck of superheroes and villains, featuring characters from a fictional Cyber Age Adventures universe by Frank Fradella” —Aeclectic Tarot
This remarkable deck was created by illustrator Mark Ryan, John Matthews, and Will Worthington. MUST HAVE.
Mibramig Magical Tarot
This deck includes a “Happy Squirrel” which is…just…so…awesome. Mibramig is the name of the artist.
My favorite. My absolute favorite. As if I needed another reason to love this deck, the artist, Kim Krans, credits the inspiration of the title and concept to a lyric from Bob Dylan's song Isis.
“I married Isis on the fifth day of May; But I could not hold on to her very long; So I cut off my hair and I rode straight away; For the wild unknown country where I could not go wrong.” —Bob Dylan
Designed with double-ended illustrations (playing-card style) by Zach Wong to reveal the hidden meanings of card reversals.
Each card in the The Light Grey Tarot features a unique illustration by a different artist of the Light Grey Art Lab, and incorporates all types of mediums and styles. The project was originally created for exhibition called Tarot, Mystics and Occult Exhibition in late 2012.
BOS: As Above
This is the first of a set of two decks (volume II is So Below) written by Barbara Moore, with artwork by Grzegorz Krysinski and Simone Gabrielli (in this deck). Suits organzied by earth, air, fire, water, and some major cards renamed to reflect pagan concepts and seasonal holidays. Such a cool idea! Planning on getting both so I can pick and choose my favorite cards and make a mixed deck.
Amazing and whimsical artwork by Paulina Cassidy. Her unique interpretation of the Judgment Card (aka Rebirth), has forever changed my understanding of the tarot.
Conceptualized by OBOD leaders Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm, and illustrated by former Pendragon, Will Worthington (artist of the Wildwood tarot).
Sun & Moon
Art by the fabulous Vanessa Decort. Her signature style incorporates both whimsy and depth into each card.
Stephanie Pui-Mun Law is a goddess. Her watercolors are part of an essential spiritual diet.
Decks I Shamelessly Covet
This amazing deck designed by UnmatchedStyle, is both amazing and frightening at the same time. Amazing because it means there are others out there like me. Frightening because it means there are others out there like me. Each card (major arcana only) corresponds to the life and trials of a web-designer, complete with a High Priestess represented as the Angel Investor, and Internet Explorer 6 as the The Devil. Hilarious.
BOS: So Below
This is the second in a two-part deck series called Book of Shadows: As Above, So Below. It contrasts the mundane world (So Below) with the inner world (As Above) of modern pagans. Illustrated by Sabrina Ariganello and Alessia Pastorello, and written by author Barbara Moore. More images available on Aeclectic.
This deck, designed by sisters Amy Zerner and Monte Farber, is a re-working of their previous work Enchanted Tarot. I especially love the Tower card.
Designed and written by Eileen Connolly and her son Peter Paul Connolly. “A colourful and finely illustrated synthesis Tarot and Feng Shui, the Chinese system of environment arrangement. The biggest change [from] a ‘standard’ tarot are the suits, which are now Black Tortoise, Red Phoenix, White Tiger and Green Dragon instead of Wands, Cups, Swords and Pentacles, and it can be difficult to get to used to” —Aeclectic Tarot
Now THIS is a mermaid-themed deck that I can get behind fully. Mostly because it combines other sea-creatures into the imagery as well...and only slightly for the comic-book style art...okay mostly. I love comics.
Of the Spirit
The colors in this deck are much more vibrant in-person. By Joyce Eakins.
These are from a series of “22 paintings on glass...arranged in the sequence of the major arcana and tell the story of how the cards came from Egypt to Bavaria,” by German artist Reinhard Schmid. The original paintings are approximately 22 x 53 inches, and are first drawn by pencil, then colored, and finally digitally enhanced. Unfortunately, there are no current plans to publish them as a deck. More images of the finished cards can be viewed on his deviantART page: Aedicula Arcanorum.
Tarot of Owls
The Tarocchi dei Gufi is by the Italian artist Maria Rita Frazzoni.
Hisyam A. Fachri
An Indonesian deck featuring unique artwork with a Southeast Asian flair, set in vibrant jewel-tones and earthy neutrals. Seriously hard to find.
Monicka Clio Sakki
These images are so cheery and fun, they really grow on you. Get hooked.
Jasmin Lee Cori is the co-creator of this deck, which includes magically etherial imagery and unique card titles.
I especially love the juxtaposition of typography and imagery to represent the various pip cards.
Masahiro Obara is the artist of this untitled, limited-edition, self-published tarot deck from Japan. The cards are an unconventional size, have no numerical or typographical identifiers, and are drop-dead gorgeous.
A Hungarian deck by llustrator Katalin Szegedi and author Zsófia Lázár.
Ace of Tarot
Self-published in Japan by the artist Ogasa Shin.
Tarô do Amor
Tarot of Love
This is a Brazilian deck created by author Eduardo Molinero and Italian surrealist Vinicius Pradella.
This sweet, colorful, whimsical, and extremely endearing 22-card deck is created by author by Dennis Fairchild, and fiber-artist and master-quilter Susan Shie. If I understand the progression of this project correctly, these designs began as a series of quilts inspired by the major arcana. THESE ARE QUILTS. Amazing. My favorites are Strength (aka The Skillet), and (despite my vegan aversion to animal products) the Lovers (aka Cream & Sugar).
Created in 2009 by artist Osvaldo Menegazzi, this deck was inspired by the futurism art movement from the early 20th century (read: like printed orgasms for art history buffs). Another version, Futurismo Numero 2, was created in 2010.
Artist and designer Shibuya ‘Merutoherumu’ (メルトヘルム澁谷) demonstrates in this self-published deck that it is possible to completely abandon all traditional symbolism in tarot imagery, and still invoke powerful emotional responses and spiritual meaning. Behold the power of art.
A promotional tarot deck (which is IMPOSSIBLE TO FIND) based on a Chinese graphic novel fantasy series Critical (subtitled Grand Trace, or Grand Track, or Jazz Track...all the English translations are different). Written by Guo Jing Ming and illustrated by Wang Huan, published by Hubei Publishing Group: Changjiang Literature and Art.
Nemorino und das Bündel des Narren
Nemorino and the Fool's Bundle
The story and illustrations in this book (though never made into a usable deck) were inspired by the tarot and correspond to the major arcana: Sovereign (Empress), Lovers, Wagon (Chariot), Hermit, Descent (Tower), and Sun-Moon-Stars to name a few. Written by Gion Mathias Cavelty and illustrated by Chrigel Farner, it has English translations by Steve Ghilardi. Published in 2012 by Salis Verlag of Germany and Switzerland.
Despite the affiliation drawbacks, this tarot is awesome! I only wish I knew the name of the graphic artist. This deck was credited by (two of the shadiest sounding characters in the over-arching pagan community) spiritulist Jon Stetson and mentalist John Michael Hilford, and was published for cheap distrubution in the Dollar Tree stores by Greenbriar International, Inc.
major Arcana taRot
Illustrated by George Pantoulas, a graphic artist and designer from Greece, the imagery of this deck combines digital art, illustration, graphic design, and photo-collage. Haunting, etherial, and at times horrifying, this is “romantic goth” the way it was meant to be. More images and information can be found on TarotCards.gr.
Tarot de l'Orage
Tarot of the Storm
By the increasingly prolific tarot artist Philippe Rouchier, illustrator extraordinaire of the l'Oeil de Myrddin and Les Arcanes de l'Étoile tarots.
Les Arcanes de l'Étoile
Arcana of the Stars
By Philippe Rouchier, creator of the l'Oeil de Myrddin and Tarot de l'Orage tarots.
l'Oeil de Myrddin
Eye of Myrddin
By french artist, Philippe Rouchier, who also illustrated Les Arcanes de l'Etoile and Tarot de l'Orage tarots.
Lisa Chow Oracle
How gorgeous are these? Lust.
This majors-only deck was created in 2012 by illustrator Tadahiko ‘Hesomoge’ Kawagushi, and master astrologer Maki Mikami.
Ancient Magick Divination Cards by Londa Marks.
HOW DID I NOT KNOW ABOUT THIS?! A tarot deck based on character archetypes and symbolism from the tv show that dominated my life for six years? Well, flash me sideways and hit me with the Jesus stick, I've died and gone to purgatory.
These watercolors by Chatriya Hemharnvibul bridge the stylistic gap between art nouveau and art deco.
Ideally, I would love to find (or make) an art nouveau style tarot with the imagery of my favorite artist, Alphonse Mucha...but these come pretty close.
If you don't love these whimsical tree-hugging illustrations by artist Dana Driscoll, you're dead inside.
Liber-T: Stars Eternal
A reworking of the Crowley-Harris tarot by artist Andrea Serio, and Roberto Negrini.
Transformation is all its forms by Massimiliano Filadoro and Luigi di Giammarino.
Astrological imagery and star constillations inspired this deck by Kay Steventon (creator of the Spiral tarot).
“Created by Patrick Valenza using original artwork and elements digitally manipulated from photographs of tombstones and an insane asylum.” —DeviantMoon.com
The famous deck created by Aleister Crowley and Frieda Harris. Some advice I've been given regarding this deck: a) you need a certain level of tarot reading experience to use it well, and b) the artwork is better experienced in large-format.
This deck is the ONLY cat-themed tarot that I have ever been drawn to, thanks to the amazing artowrk by Karen Kuykendall.
An eclectic, gothic manga style deck by artist, Viviane.
This gothic deck, illustrated by Patrizio Evangelisti, has the reader follow the path of a mysterious (fictional) character named Ludy Lescot (instead of the traditional Fool).
Lescot, featured on all the Aces, is described as ‘a young esoteric and student of the arts, whom one could meet on the steamy streets in the New Orleans French Quarter.’
Created by D.J. Conway (author of Animal-Speak), and watercolor artist Lisa Hunt (also illustrated the Ghosts & Spirits tarot). Note: wand suit is associated with air, and swords are associated with fire.
Ghosts & Spirits
By awesome watercolorist, Lisa Hunt (the artist behind the Fantastical Creatures, Shapeshifter, and Celtic Dragon tarots).
An amazing collection by 77 different tattoo artists from all over the world.
Art of Life
Combining inspirational quotes with famous artworks, this deck speaks to my love of art history. MUST HAVE.
“I realized that by drawing inspiration from my background in art history and my lifelong passion for quotations, I could capture the essence of the meanings behind each card while simultaneously encouraging the reader to interpret its personal meaning...” —Charlene Livingstone
This deck combines the trumps with the path of Siddhartha on his journey to enlightenment. Minor suits are Vajras, Jewels, Double Vajras, and Lotuses. By Robert M. Place.
The latest incarnation of the deck(s) by Giacinto Gaudenzi, formerly known as Tarocchi del' Alba Dorata, Tarot of the Golden Dawn, and The Enchanted Tarot (of the Golden Dawn).
Il Meneghello artist Osvaldo Menegazzi obtained exclusive rights, from the Ministry of Heritage and Culture and Pinacoteca di Brera (where it is housed), to create a 22-card (majors-only) deck reproduced directly from the original deck. Offered in a limited edition of 400 copies only, in 2013. View the official Facebook page.
Distributed by tarot historian Giordano Berti, this full 78-card deck is a faithful recretion (by illustrator Wolfgang Mayer) of the original deck. The original Sola Bosca is the oldest-known (late fifteenth century, Italy) complete 78-card tarot deck ever printed. Offered in a limited edition of 700 copies only, in 1998. Visit the official Sola Busca Mayer Tarot website.
Yo-ho! Hoist the colors. Created by Michele Benevento and Arturo Picca (illustrators), and Bepi Vigna (author).
I'm a known Greek geek, so this speaks to my Grecian leanings. By Luca Raimondo and Manfredi Toraldo.
Alchemy 1977 England
A dark, pop-goth style deck. Odd choice for me, but some of the cards are awesome. Many scenes on the majors feature grinning skeletons, while the court have a dark fantasy feel. The minor arcana don't have scenes, but the suit elements are decorated to fit the theme.
Mermaids are not my favorite beings, nor do I relate to them closely, but this deck is gorgeous, and it stirs something deep within me that might be worth exploring someday. Art by Mauro De Luca.
Both beautiful and unique as it combines concepts and imagery from three different tarot traditions: Marseille, Waite-Smith, and Crowley-Harris. Art by Anna Lazzarini.
Some of the images are a little too whimsical for my taste, but others are striking. I think it might be worth it just for the sheer scope of the cultural representations. Art by Antonella Platano.
There are many Native American themed decks, but this one is (in my humble white-girl opinion) the most beautiful and respectful in terms of its subjects and imagery. Art by Sergio Tisselli (artist of the Viking tarot).
Although this doesn't reflect my own cultural roots, the images spark something in me, both in beauty and concept. By Giuseppe Palumbo.
Another deck that I don't necessarily relate to culturally, but the art and designs are unique and appeal to my graphic sensibilities. By Silvana Alasia (also created the Sorcerors tarot).
This deck is intriguing as it uses the Golden Dawn's astrological concepts and 1940s imagery to create a unique and highly mysterious journey through the cards. By Lee Bursten and Luca Raimondo.
Not representive of my ancestors, as it focuses exclusively on Irish mythology, but there's enough cultural overlap to remind me of my Scottish heritage. Illustrated by Giacinto Gaudenzi (majors) and Saverio Tenuta (minors).
This appeals to me more than Lisa Hunt's Fairy Tale Tarot because of the Central European style of the artwork. It reminds me of the illustrations I remember from the original folktales. Created by Alex Ukolov and Karen Mahony (creators of the Tarot of Prague), with Irina Triskova. Distributed by Magic Realist Press.
Breathtaking. Don't take my word for it...this is a deck you have to see in-person. By A. Atanassov.
By artist Ayumi Kasai and MoonPrincess Himiko. Note: pip cards are simple graphical designs of the four suits, while the majors are full illustrated scenes.
Love and Mystery
Another tarot from MoonPrincess Himiko and artist Ayumi Kasai. The Love and Mystery Tarot (Ai to Shinpi no Tarotto Uranai) is designed in the same style as Himiko's self-titled deck, the MoonPrincess Himiko Tarot. So much so, in fact, it's almost impossible to tell them apart. Check out the Star!
My translation of the full title (Shiawase o Yobu Ai no Uranai) is “Divination of Love to Invite Happiness.” Created by K.H. Nicolas and Belne.
This amazing project by artist Suzanne Treister “features 78 alchemical drawings depicting interconnected histories of the computer and the Internet, cybernetics and the counterculture, science-fiction and scientific projections of the future, government and military research programs, social engineering and ideas of the control society; alongside diverse philosophical, literary and political responses to the advance of technology including the claims of anarcho-primitivism, techno-gaianism, and trans-humanism” (from the book description).
These art nouveau illustrations (by Kwon Shina) remind me of the illustrations (by John R. Neill) in L. Frank Baum's Oz books.
“Based on the transcendental game of Zen, [this] is a non-traditional deck of 79 cards. There are many changes that suit the Zen theme, including one extra major arcana card for Osho, and four suits of fire, clouds, water, and rainbows. Most of the cards are inspiring and stunningly beautiful, while others tend towards being cartoon-y.” By Ma Deva Padma and Osho.
By artist Lee Bursten, this deck is a more colorful version of the original Marseille classic.
Tarot de Marseille
Bursting with color, this Marseille deck is published by Fournier, and sometimes called the Fournier Marseille.
By master illustrator Paolo Martinello. How do you not fall in love with these? Look at them. LOOK AT THEM, darn you!
Ravynne (Michele-lee) Phelan is the same artist that created the Messenger Oracle and the upcoming Dreams of Gaia tarot.
The Messenger Cards
A self published ‘animal spirit oracle’ by artist Sandra Kunz.
Kenzo Psy Chic
Designed by graphic artist Michael Willis for fashion house Kenzo, these cards were originally commissioned for live tarot readings at Kenzo's pop-up store in Paris, 2012.
Lynyrd-Jym Narciso created this 44-card deck with both male and female versions of each of the major arcana cards.
Designed by Ryuichi Izumi, and illustrated by Ken Kumagai. Self published, 22 major arcana cards, Japan.
By artist Erik C. Dunne (known as Elric2012 on deviantART). Coming soon in 2013!
An adorable yet haunting self-published, limited-edition, majors-only deck by illustrator Monica L. Knighton (artist of the beautiful Tarot of the Dead); inspired by the William Butler Yeats poem The Stolen Child.
“Come away, O human child! To the waters and the wild; With a faery, hand-in-hand; For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand.” —William Butler Yeats
By Will Worthington (artist of the DruidCraft and Wildwood tarots).
Illustrated by Wil Kinghan, written by John Matthews.
Every time I see this beautiful black and white deck, illustrated by Godfrey Dowson, it makes me want to break out my markers and get coloring! I just might.
Mage The Awakening
Originally designed for an RPG, this deck features the work of five fabulous artists: Stephanie Pui-Mun Law (creatrix of the Shadowscapes tarot), Michael Kaluta, Yasmine Locke, Vince Locke, and Saana Lappalainen.
Rainbow Warrior Awaken!
Mara Berendt Friedman
See more at the Rainbow Warrior Awaken page at New Moon Visions.
Not my favorite deck by any means, I find most of the artwork stiff and juvenile, but some of its imagery is compelling and succeeds to draw me in.
By Rohit Arya and Jane Adams.
By Johanna Gargiulo-Sherman.