Earth Wisdom Tarot Sacred Art

Comments on your Comments

in Art, Gaian Tarot

It’s a two-ferry day, and a three-island day. I will be leaving my little island on our small county ferry soon, then driving to Fidalgo Island and across Deception Pass to Whidbey Island, where I’ll catch the huge Washington state ferry and ride over to the peninsula to visit friends.

I’ve been thinking a lot this past week about the comments that have come in on the Builder/Emperor, especially the ones that are somewhat critical. (Thank you, everyone, who took the time to write and let me know your thoughts.)

I’ve always prided myself on accepting criticism on my writing and artwork from people whose own work I admire, as I see it as a refining process that helps me to make my own work better. So I’ve been mulling over Waverly’s words, and Spiritwalker’s, and Lunaea’s. I don’t know Spiritwalker personally, but Waverly and Lunaea are both longtime friends of mine and I value their judgments and assessments (hey, they’re both Virgos too!).

So I’ve been giving a lot of thought to whether or not the Builder could be improved. I do see what Waverly means about the composition not being as exciting as some other cards — and yet that was intentional. The phallic pole, the many angles in the image are meant to reinforce the “four sides” of the builder’s foundation. The angles are softened by the arched doorway, the curving design of the wood work and the billowing shirt.

And I hear what Lunaea says about the Builder feeling like the 3 of Pentacles instead of the Emperor. I thought about this a lot. I realized that I intuitively — although purposely — chose to show the Builder building a house rather than a city, because I wanted to shy away from any patriarchal, domineering, power-over overtones to this card. Most Emperor cards do have those qualities and I wanted to portray an alternative kind of masculinity. So I thank Lunaea for nudging me to articulate the reasons I chose to present the Emperor this way.

And I will take Spiritwalker’s comment to heart about slowing down and not sacrificing quality to meet a deadline. Thank you.

Meanwhile, I have been working on the Devil card, which I am calling “Bindweed.” And the immortal words of Ricky Nelson keep floating through my head: “You know you can’t please everyone, so you got to please yourself.” la la la . . .

And yes, I am glad I started this comments section! 🙂

Thoughtful, sparkling comments. . .

  • Lunaea Weatherstone Sun - Aug 08th 2004 8:27 am

    Well, if you wanted revenge on any of the critics, you’ve certainly done it by planting “Garden Party” in our heads. I’m going to have to go listen to some Aerosmith or something now just to purge my brain! 🙂
    But seriously, thank you for listening and most of all, thank you for the beautiful intention you are putting into your deck.

  • Susan Schauer Mon - Aug 16th 2004 11:01 am

    Dear Joanna,
    I just wanted to say, yet again, that to my way of thinking, your Gaian Tarot images are getting better and better. I LOVE the deck you are creating! I guess my only caveat is that with each image posted, I increasingly want to sell my home, move to the West Coast and live on an island! And I have the good fortune to live in a very beautiful wooded setting in an untouched area of NH!
    I do agree with the sentiment you have received to take the time you need to create your deck in your way. Deadlines can be wonderful but, at times, they can be soul quashing. If you need more time than your self imposed deadline allows, you know what to do!

  • Joanna Mon - Aug 16th 2004 11:40 am

    Sue, your comment made me laugh out loud! I am sure you have beautiful islands in the NE too . . . 🙂
    Thanks for the vote of confidence about finishing in my own time . . . but I also think I work well under pressure. I won’t sacrifice quality for these final 4 cards, but I am still going to do my best to have the decks ready to ship by Oct 1.
    Thanks again, so much, and Bright Blessings!