Monday, 26 January 2015

TADAAAAAAH! A new look!

What do you think of the new blogger header image?!

I am rather partial to the artwork of Caroline Blackler and I asked her to create an image for Tarot Thrones and what she came up with completely blew me away.

The blog's full Sunday title is:  This Game of Thrones, but I mostly refer to it as Tarot Thrones.  Clever Caroline used the full title of the blog to recreate the Iron Throne from THE Game of Thrones .... but it is built entirely of court card images!

Honestly, it is STUPENDOUS!  And it perfectly captures the whole blog ethos for me.  It's going to be used on EVERYTHING Tarot Thrones!

Take a good look at the various court card images that Caroline has used - which ones do you recognise?!

I'm still pootering about with the backgrounds and fonts and what not, but I couldn't wait a moment longer to share the main image with you!

So there you have it - Caroline Blackler is available for commissions and I hope that you can tell by the smile on my face as I type, that I am more than delighted with the end result!

You can check out Caroline's artwork and written work here:

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Sola Busca | Mantegna | Triumphs of Caesar

In an earlier post, Heroes Warriors and Worthies, we took a look at the naming of the Court Cards in French playing card decks and how these have been incorporated into Dame Fortune's Tarot Wheel.

Another deck that incorporates named court cards is the Sola Busca Tarot.

This deck originated in Italy during the late 15th Century and is quite different from other Tarocchi decks in that it is entirely populated by warriors (with exception of the Court Queens).  The Majors are all named.  The Fool remains Il Mato (the Fool) but all else are whirled into a vortex of classical names ....Nerone (Nero), Catulo (Cattulus), Catone (Cato... no, not the Pink Panther one) and so on.

The images in this deck are richly coloured and brooding in their mood.

This deck is very important indeed, in that it has clearly formed the basis for the Rider Waite Smith deck.

Look familiar? The Sola Busca's 10 of Swords.

As was the habit, the little Pages are not named - because in gaming decks there were only 3 court cards.

We have:

King of Swords - Alexandro M
Queen of Swords - Olimpia
Knight of Swords - Amone

King of Staves - L Evio Plauto R
Queen of Staves - Pallas
Knight of Staves - Apolino

King of Cups - Lucio Cecilio R
Queen of Cups - Polisena
Knight of Cups - Natanabo

King of Coins - R Filipio
Queen of Coins - Elena
Knight of Coins - Sarafino

The names have some affinity with the Heroes, Warriors and Worthies, as previously looked at here on m'blog.

This is where my blog goes a bit off piste and veers utterly away from further discussion of the Courts, because I was very struck by the style of the vibrancy of colours, the all-male procession and the scale of the 'booty' and the similarity to the canvases of Andrea Mantegna's Triumphs of Caesar which are housed at Hampton Court Palace in London.

The nine paintings depict Caesar's triumphant return from his campaign against the Gauls in a cavalcade of soldiers and booty.

In his book 'Lives of the Artists' Vasari says: 'The best thing Mantegna ever painted' and the enormous canvases became extremely famous throughout Europe.

The scale of the vases?  

The artfully arranged trophy 'Cups'?

Look at the stuck-on breasts of Pallas. Do you think they resemble the bare breasts of the captive above?  The cloudy skies? 

The only children depicted in the Triumph are captives.

What about this child in the 'Nerone' (Justice) card of the Sola Busca?

Perhaps the resemblances are pure fancy on my part, but if Mantegna's paintings were famous throughout Europe, why wouldn't a wealthy Italian Lord not want his own version?

It has been suggestested that the creation of the Tarot's Trumps IS based on Roman Triumph parades.  What if it was THIS one in particular, painted between 1484 - 1492?  The Sola Busca Tarot is estimated, by its Tarot historian champion, Giordano Berti, to be around 1490-91.

So the two dates dovetail together nicely.

What do you think? Is the link allllllll in my head?!

*** edit: since I'm not a huge fan of very lengthy blog posts, I'll just say here that I plan to write this up in greater detail and will work towards either showign a link or showing that there is no link.  And you will be able to have it as a pdf to read.  But it will take me a while, so don't hold your breath! :-D

Monday, 5 January 2015

Full Moon in Cancer | Queen of Cups

Gold backgrounds don't
scan very well!
The Full Moon takes place on 5 January 2015 and appears in Cancer. This means that our world of Tarot Court cards, the corresponding Card character is The Queen of Cups.

This character is caring, empathetic and often with a psychic streak a mile wide.

Your Tarot Court Card Theme for 2015

Just a bit of Tarot Court Card fun to kick us off into the New Year!

Lots of tarot buzz on Social Media about THEMES for the year, as inspired by the Major Arcana card that your personal year correlates to.

To find our what your personal year card is, take your day and month of birth and add to 35 (ie 20+15, the current year).

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Yule Blog Hop | The Joy of Gifting

Welcome to the Yule Tarot Blog hop!  Before we go any further, this is your navigation link to the blogs that flank me for this hop *waves to Mary and Stella*

Our blog wrangler is the lovely Arwen Lynch and she set us the following questions which we are to answer through a Tarot spread:

  • Card 1:  What gift would you give the world if you could?
  • Card 2: What gift would you want from the world?
  • Card 3: What gift have you gotten that has brought you joy?
  • Card 4: What gift have you given that has brought you joy?
  • Card 5: What is one last thing you would like to share about this season?

Because is all about the court cards, I decided that my answers would have to come from the Court Cards.

Since I have not managed to sneak in another blog post using Alexander Daniloff's amazing Tarot for aaaaaages, let me take this last blog hop of 2014 to use them one final time!

I have removed the 16 Court Cards from the deck and will now shuffle the Courts only, asking each question and drawing a card as an answer to that question.

No fancy layout required for this one!

Card 1:  What gift would you give the world if you could?

The King of Swords

As a blend of Fire and Air, this guy's actions and thoughts must be consistent in order for him to be healthy.  He likes to know everything about what he's involved in so that there are no nasty surprises.  Clarity and honesty are watchwords with him.

This King will organise everything, from the multi-million pound company take-over strategy right down to the family picnic, to the finest detail. All this thinking (he's a person of lists - pros and cons) can slowly paralyse him and that's when the King of Swords starts to become unhealthy.

He also has high personal standards and expects other people to live up to them. When people fall short, he can be scathing in his criticism. However he is equally tough on himself when he too fails to live up to his own standards.  And since none of us are perfect, he often makes himself unnecessarily miserable.

But in a week where we have experienced the horror of the school massacre in Pakistan and the Sydney Lindt Cafe seige, the gift that I would give the world, if I possibly could, is the discernment and wisdom of the King of Swords.

Card 2: What gift would you want from the world?

The Page of Pentacles

This is the first of THREE of the four Pages in my spread! The Page of Pentacles is Earth of Earth.  This Page begins new experiences.  This could be in health, in wealth or in the home.

What would I like him to bring me healthwise? I'm too heavy for my height and a nice gift would be to start taking better care of my health.

Wealthwise? I could do with bringing in more money in 2015 and am hoping that my Year in The Wildwood Tarot e-book will still be able to go ahead, despite the changes to tax on digital products in Europe.

Homewise? Perhaps I could do with being more present at home, rather than living most of my life virtually?  I could start focussing more on the modelling that I'm doing for my son (stuck in front of a computer, messy desk, lack of interest in keeping home nice.  I am not overly keen on house-work, what can I say?)

Card 3:  What gift have you gotten that has brought you joy?

Page of Wands

Ah this can only be my own little Page of Wands!  Fourteen years old and obsessed with Minecraft and Kerbal Space Program (don't ask) he is a ray of sunshine in my life.  He is sunny-natured, always walks with a bounce in his step (as a child he skipped everywhere!), developing a nicely warped sense of humour, creative (you should see the space ships in Kerbal and the palaces in Minecraft!) and keen as mustard to grow up!

Please don't be sick, but the gift that the world has given me that has brought me the greatest joy is my son :)

Card 4:  What gift have you given that has brought you joy?

The King of Pentacles

I try to give people practical gifts and (typical Leo) I am prone to spending too much money!  Money and generosity - King of Pentacles!

For example, this year, my mum is getting a water floss (like a toothbrush, but for flossing).  Hubby is getting a cover for his Kindle.... and, no doubt, brake pads or a suspension-enhancing kit for the car.  Not mentioning anything about my son.  Just in case he reads this...

The gift that I have given that has brought me greatest joy, ever?  The actual wrapped-up-you-shouldn't-have pressie? I honestly can't think of anything specific.

But, want the schmaltzy answer? Giving my old racing greyhound a home and the gift of life to Sonshine were pretty unbeatable as far as bringing myself joy!

Card 5:  What is one last thing you would share about this season?

Page of Cups

Gentle and affectionate, the Page of Cups comes up to show us the last thing that I would share about the season.  He is as open-hearted as his Cup.

This Page, whose tender feelings and flights of imagination are so easily bruised and battered by cynicism, ridicule and downright cruelty deserves to be the standard bearer for the season, just as much as his suit.

Ignore the Scrooges, says the Page of Cups!  Wear your Christmas sweater with pride!  Kiss beneath the mistletoe! Call out 'Merry Christmas' to strangers in the rain!

His message is the title of the biography of one of my favourite comics, Bill Hicks:  Love all the people.

Have a lovely time!