Introducing A Royal Feast

I discovered the talkative side of the court characters when I was creating the artwork for Nine Lives Tarot. Where other Tarot characters fell into my imagination quietly, the Royal family members invariably arrived with a long string of words… My drawing board became a busy gathering of Kings, Queens, Knights and Pages; each happy to strike up a conversation, while throwing themselves into the offering of advice, the telling of stories, and even what some would refer to as the Royal art of Persuasion …

Castle of Rods

Court card meanings

So, when they appear in a Tarot reading… Do court cards represent a specific person, an aspect of self, an aspect of a specific personality, or something entirely different?

I believe the individual voice of each court card, along with the place they occupy in a reading (taking into account the surrounding cards), will help determine what they are referring to. As they are naturally talkative, they will help you work it out, if you are prepared to listen :)

Obviously, this can still present a challenge, as they speak of this, then of that, while alluding to something else and remaining in a most frustrating way unaffected and possibly even on the proverbial fence, or even worse, in cohorts with someone predictably about to achieve no good on your part:  “Hmm, would that be raspberry jam in the corner of your mouth?”  I fell for a Knight in shining armour, got swept off my feet to a bumpy ride, where I completely missed the gist of our conversation; only to later discover that the message delivered by the Page was all in code! You cannot coax a King, though he means ever so well with his worldly wisdom; and I know now, that you cannot press the point of a Queen (not literally anyway).

… And then the Queen of Rods finally approached me with all her flamboyance and flair, convincing me that there is a lot more to discover about these charming people of the courts…

The Royal Card Journey:

Queens, Kings and Knights from Nine Lives Tarot are lining up to pose for a deck of playing cards, inspired by Nine Lives Tarot – The Queen of Rods (in particular) believes they will all look fabulous, and has even offered to pose upside-down if it helps…

Creating a playing card deck is to me, an inspiring way to further explore the court card characters, while at the same time creating something new :)

Queen of Rods and Clubs Draft Queen of Clubs and Rods – Annette Abolins

Playing Cards and a Graphic Novel

I went to work on the Queen of Clubs (Rods) and made the first draft (see above). The queen posed in a cloak with clubs for the occasion, while chatting happily and watching what I was doing… I didn’t make her pose on her head though :)

I discovered a sketchbook just perfect for a Graphic novel about the royal Tarot realms. My ink pens are running again and there is joy in my hands and imagination… This project speaks of freedom and excitement, as I don’t fully know where, or how far it will carry me. I do believe there will be plenty to discover along the way, and I do hope you will join me for the journey :)

Raven Guide - Annette Abolins
First Page – The Raven guide introducing the Royal realms
Pen & Ink -Annette Abolins


2 thoughts on “Introducing A Royal Feast”

  1. I have given a lot of thought to your post, and I find that the idea is growing on me the more I think about it. You asked: ‘Do court cards represent a specific person, an aspect of self, an aspect of a specific personality, or something entirely different?’ I found this a very pertinent question, and I think that it can be answered, to a certain degree, by taking the project in the two directions you specified at the end of your post. Characters, be they Tarot characters or characters in a novel, have their own ideas and their own personalities, and, although it may seem completely insane, it is necessary to listen to these characters and to take on board their suggestions and their ideas. We may well create something, either visually or with words, but we must then give the object of our creation the freedom to move in whatever direction it may feel is the right direction. I am quite sure that the simplified deck of cards and the graphic novel will be two such directions that, in time, will bring much satisfaction, not only to you the artist, but also to the characters themselves.

  2. Thank you for your thoughtful comments Diane, it’s really nice to get such encouraging and well articulated feedback :) I think you actually hit the nail on the head where you talk about giving the object of creation freedom to move in whatever direction it may feel is right… This is exactly what is happening as I feel myself being pulled into drawings by characters who simply want to be explored further.

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