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White out for mistakes? Brilliant. I was not allowed to make mistakes, lol, working on frosted mylar, white out would have shown. So I just held my breath every time I drew a line haha.
It actually was not a Sharpie. But it was a fine line permanent marker by Pentel they discontinued them so I bought every one I could find online, cleaned a few places out of what little stock they had, just to make sure I could finish the deck, as they were the only thing that worked right on the mylar I bought to use. Then I painted them with India inks and a paint brush. I bought a set of cheap paintbrushes from the back of a magazine, that are actually pretty good, very tiny, for people who paint model trains and such.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Babalon Jones View Post
White out for mistakes? Brilliant. I was not allowed to make mistakes, lol, working on frosted mylar, white out would have shown. So I just held my breath every time I drew a line, haha.
I think it was a medium and not a fine point Flair pen - but if it was the tips wear down fast from friction against the paper. Hard to draw fine lines and small details and many were indistinct with the Flair or I had to eliminate them entirely. What a joy to go to digital and be able to clean up those images.

However, the scanned black lines - AYE-KY-AYE! What looks like a strong black border line in ink transformed in digital into a mosaic of squares in different black tones~! The same for black hand-lettering! It might have been different had I used India Ink but this was a learn-as-you-go process.
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Great thread! I hope new card artists will stop here and absorb some of your wisdom. It really does take forever and a day to complete a tarot deck, and longer than that to figure out distribution. That funny deck idea you all had over dinner seemed like a sure winner while you were sipping wine, but the cool idea has to hold up through the whole long process of deck construction.

And so few of us are both deck writers/planners/designers and deck artists. It's kind of sad to see a good deck idea done in by poorly handled artwork, or great artwork wasted on a lame idea.

If I were to give any over-arching advice to a person who just HAS to create a deck, it would be to plan out their entire 78-card deck before they ever start sketching. Like any edifice, a solid and comprehensive card-based divination system is built on a solid plan.

The plan should be worked out in writing first, perhaps in a spiral-bound notebook. Each card should be written out in words first, and only when every card is figured out in symbols, colors, poses, numbers, titles, shapes, (and, incidentally, decide on a printer and a template) -- only then should a person start creating the artwork.

I know it seems backward, but that's what experience has taught me.

That's just my two cents. It's just that I see such a lot of good intentions go bust, when a little pre-flight planning would make the whole project not only go easier in the execution, but work better in the actual reading.
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<<It's kind of sad to see a good deck idea done in by poorly handled artwork, or great artwork wasted on a lame idea.>>

Yes. The PoMo deck has a *great* book, and the concept was wonderful. But it would have been *so* much better if they had been able to get permission to use the art referenced and properly adapt it, rather than the redrawing which just doesn't come across the same at all.

Of course no one would have been able to afford to do it the way it needed to be done. So at least what we've got gets the idea across. But I would so much have liked to have seen the kind of thing that the descriptions suggest.
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I wish I had known from the outset, the likelihood of your 'partner' deserting the project after a year of work had been invested.

All I was left with were sketches that were too rough for me to do anything with. I had purchased the art materials and had also completed a comprehensive book for the deck, including a work book section - 256 typed pages of A4 sitting on my PC as a word document, never to be used. I had even offered to do the colouring of the deck but he declined, wanting to do all the artwork himself.

I think it showed me that there is no guarantee that both parties will follow through, and that trust plays a huge part when working with another. I have now learned the only way to go is to do it myself. Due to the fact I have the artistic ability of a dismembered gnat in the throes of a seizure, it ain't happening. Yes, I know it doesn't have to be a Michael Angelo, yes I know I could learn to draw through lessons etc. It would not be to the standard I want, and what I have as an image in my head. I did art at school - I know my ceiling with ability and it is low. So please, do not suggest that.

It is always a treat to see a finished product when it comes to tarot. I know how much work, sweat, tears, sleepless nights etc go into it. That is why I would hesitate to be overly critical of any creation. They deserve respect, and the creator does always warrant at least a pat on the back.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadowdancer View Post
I wish I had known from the outset, the likelihood of your 'partner' deserting the project after a year of work had been invested.

All I was left with were sketches that were too rough for me to do anything with. I had purchased the art materials and had also completed a comprehensive book for the deck, including a work book section - 256 typed pages of A4 sitting on my PC as a word document, never to be used. I had even offered to do the colouring of the deck but he declined, wanting to do all the artwork himself.

I think it showed me that there is no guarantee that both parties will follow through, and that trust plays a huge part when working with another. I have now learned the only way to go is to do it myself.
It is always a treat to see a finished product when it comes to tarot. I know how much work, sweat, tears, sleepless nights etc go into it. That is why I would hesitate to be overly critical of any creation. They deserve respect, and the creator does always warrant at least a pat on the back.
I couldn't agree more with this i just wanted to add my own thoughts i paint in my spare time and have been working on my own deck creation for nearly a year, but i still do not feel confident enough to show my work in public although i have been told my work is good? I also wanted to address what the other poster had said about creators who might design lame themes and ideas with tarot? i have seen plenty of deck creations on AT and i think many of these have potential to be published one day, what we should appreciate is the undertaken of such commitments and even though we might not like the main concept ideas or theme to a particular deck we should not be to critical, but instead enjoy the progress that goes along with creating 78 pieces of Art work?
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Draw big...then shrink


I think alot of new tarot artist make the mistake, when they are hand-drawing, of drawing within a frame that is the size of the card it will eventually be printed on. To me thats the biggest mistake, it makes everything feel cramped in the picture unless the image is planned out to the very last detail to account for space.

My approach when hand drawing is to use at least a 8.5 x 11 piece of paper and make the image nice and big with tons of detail(another benefit of starting huge, it's really hard to put much detail into something when you are trying to fit your hand drawing into a 2"x4" square).

Once you are satisfied with the drawing, scan it in, and use a program like photoshop to size the picture down to the desired card size.

Maybe i'm just stating the obvious
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tarotbear View Post
I think it was a medium and not a fine point Flair pen - but if it was the tips wear down fast from friction against the paper. Hard to draw fine lines and small details and many were indistinct with the Flair or I had to eliminate them entirely. What a joy to go to digital and be able to clean up those images.

However, the scanned black lines - AYE-KY-AYE! What looks like a strong black border line in ink transformed in digital into a mosaic of squares in different black tones~! The same for black hand-lettering! It might have been different had I used India Ink but this was a learn-as-you-go process.
For the varying colors on the lines you can use the curves dialog and turn the curve way down at the upper end of the curve, everything will even out into the black color you had originally intended assuming you're using photoshop that is.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danielnogo View Post
I think alot of new tarot artist make the mistake, when they are hand-drawing, of drawing within a frame that is the size of the card it will eventually be printed on. To me thats the biggest mistake, it makes everything feel cramped in the picture unless the image is planned out to the very last detail to account for space.
It is not the 'size' of the image but the 'proportion' of the image that is important. The aspect to aspect ratio needs to be maintained. You could do each illustration on a 2' x 3' poster board if you wish - which will make a decent poker-size image when reduced but will be too wide for a tarot card-size image when done. This is why a couple of us here say that you should find a printer 'before you begin' and see what size is best for image reproduction before you design images that are too wide or not tall enough. If the company's Tarot cards are 3" x 6" you can create your images 12" x 24" and still have the correct ratio for reproduction.

BTW - many companies use PNG files for their cards, so make sure you save your images in the correct file form to save yourself having to convert them later.

IMHO - there is a particular Russian deck out there that claims the images were painted the exact finished card size with a brush with a single hair - I think that's a load of CRAP!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tarotbear View Post
It is not the 'size' of the image but the 'proportion' of the image that is important. The aspect to aspect ratio needs to be maintained. You could do each illustration on a 2' x 3' poster board if you wish - which will make a decent poker-size image when reduced but will be too wide for a tarot card-size image when done. This is why a couple of us here say that you should find a printer 'before you begin' and see what size is best for image reproduction before you design images that are too wide or not tall enough. If the company's Tarot cards are 3" x 6" you can create your images 12" x 24" and still have the correct ratio for reproduction.

BTW - many companies use PNG files for their cards, so make sure you save your images in the correct file form to save yourself having to convert them later.

IMHO - there is a particular Russian deck out there that claims the images were painted the exact finished card size with a brush with a single hair - I think that's a load of CRAP!
I don't think I was clear in my post, I mean its going to be impossible to cram all the detail you want into a poker sized workspace
Thats all I meant, but proportion is very important as well.
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