Man, I was kind of dreading this card. I knew it would be a lot of slow detailed work. So many tiny clocks! Of course, all of that is quite appropriate to the card's meaning...
The Eight of Disks: Prudence
With the Seven, the story of our imaginary company had taken a fairly bad turn. The failures we here at Widgets Inc. had worried so much about in the Five had finally come to fruition. And with that Failure had come the reminder that after failure, you get up, you recover, you learn, you move on. What have we learned? We have learned caution, certainly. We have learned to take our time and check our work thoroughly. We have learned to always have a plan in case things go wrong, because we know that sooner or later they will. We have learned to have patience enough to give our work the time and space it needs to come out right. We are wiser now that we have fallen and picked ourselves up again. We have learned Prudence.
My illustration for this card was distinctly inspired by Pamela Colman Smith's image for the Rider-Waite tarot (http://www.learntarot.com/bigjpgs/pents08.jpg) In it, we see a man hard at work hammering a nail into one of the eight pentacles for some reason (I think the idea is that he's engraving it? Maybe the thing is just broken?). Anyway, I found myself immediately thinking of a watch repair shop as my modern version. All of those round watch faces immediately seemed like a natural connection to the round disks, and those incredibly tiny little gears and springs require the most extraordinary patience and care to manipulate and repair. And again, there is the simple association with time, as this card is all about taking the proper time with your work.
I looked up a few different watch repair shops online, and then really lucked out with the first one I stumbled into - Daniel's Jewelry on Lexington. When I explained that I was there to gather reference for a piece about watch repair, they showed me around their shop, let me go behind the counter and posed for me pouring over their work. Although the finished piece describes something of an invented space, every element - all the various clocks and watches and such - comes from somewhere in their shop. I'll be returning this week of course to give them a print or two now that the piece is done. If you'd like to see the rest of that shoot, it's all here: https://plus.google.com/photos/113639566912606521037/albums/5865257684057281857
It's all silver spoons from here on up with the disks - the remaining cards are all about more than you know what to do with. Prudence pays off in the end.