I discovered – or rather, I was reminded yesterday that to try and pin down faerie in mere words is vexing, exasperating, bewildering and like trying to shoot fish in a barrel.
In honour of it being enchanting Midsummer’s Eve, I thought I’d write about the 3 fairy-themed decks in my possession. There are more on the market, beautifully illustrated & popular too I believe. However, I don’t really care for themed decks. I appreciate the art and the gesture, however..they have something missing somehow. I’m just too bloody fussy! (all the Virgo)
So, here’s the Faerie Tarot by Nathalie Hertz
The 4 Queens are illustrated here; the 4 elemental suits are illustrated according to season – but not my associations, so already I’m a bit annoyed. But the colours are lovely and I genuinely do find the deck endearing. I love the detail and I’d love a fairy tale book illustrated by Ms Hertz. It all goes horribly wrong when I see this pair
there’s whimsical and sweet but somehow I can’t get past the feeling that the creatrix had run out of ideas..the sun and moon seem to be from teletubby land and I’d have been happier if they’d been a bit more Noel Fielding.
Next is the Tarot of the Sidhe.
I love this deck, I really do. The figures are familiar and the book is excellent.
I love the idea of the glyph of the Sidhe; I’m not bothered if its not ‘real’ or whatever – I’ve definitely encountered a few of these beings myself.
It’s a powerful and remarkable deck. I use it regularly and trust it.
However, I can’t get past the art – it’s too much as if I’d done it myself, and I’m not very good at drawing. I love the rawness, the energy, the power, the message BUT
No. (and I am angry and disappointed with myself for thinking that it matters)
Final deck – the Secret Forest from Lo Scarabeo, painted by Lucia Mattioli.
I love love LOVE most of the images, the art is haunting, evocative, sublime.
So, what’s my problem with it?
My problem is the Magician in the bathing suit (sorry sorry sorry!)
I really do love these decks, despite their ‘faults’. And not having any kind of skill at illustration (even my stick figures are wonky and scarey), I’m loathe to criticise anyone else. What I’ve pointed out here are my personal jarring points in otherwise gorgeous decks. These ‘jarring points’ in so many decks are reasons why I tend to favour the Marseilles tarot, the Thoth and the Waite-Smith. They have a simplicity of image that lends itself to clarity of message. In my opinion.