Bicycle Eira Ice - A Deck of Playing Cards Inspired By Snow
A custom deck of playing cards featuring artwork inspired by the beauty of snowflakes. Printed by the USPCC.
The Eira Ice Playing Card Deck
I’ve always been fascinated with the beauty and symmetry of snowflakes and with the endless variety of shapes they take. In the past 2 years or so, I’ve also gotten interested in playing cards as works of art in and of themselves, and one day a year ago the idea hit me to create a deck design based on the art of snow.
Eira is the Welsh word for snow, pronounced “EYE-rah”. It’s also the name of a neighborhood in Helsinki, Finland.
This is the first card deck I've designed under the moniker of Kinetic Playing Cards, which I hope to develop into a bona fide card design venture. Eira is the name of a series of snowflake-themed decks that I hope to create, with Ice being the first in line.
Each card in the deck features a unique image, from the aces all the way up to the kings. And just like in real life, no two "snowflakes" in the card deck are exactly alike.
I want this deck to appeal to playing card enthusiasts, which includes collectors, serious card players, cardists, and magicians, but also to people who just enjoy art. So the deck has been designed to incorporate the familiar elements of functional card decks while still maintaining the look and theme of the deck.
The deck consists of
- 52 custom suit cards
- 2 custom jokers
- 1 blank face card
- 1 double backer card
The deck will be printed by the United States Playing Card Company on standard Bicycle stock with Magic Finish. In addition to being the world leader in playing card deck manufacturing, they’re based in my home state of Kentucky, so that makes me especially partial to them!
The Card Back
The Eira Ice Aces sport a large center pip with the hearts and spades featuring a snowflake in the center.
The Court Cards
The Eira Ice court cards draw upon the traditional court card design and include the expected features such as the One-Eyed Jacks and the Suicide King, but with an Ice-inspired take, making these cards familiar yet unique.
The Spot Cards
The spot cards each feature a "snowflake" where the level of symmetry reflects the rank of the card, i.e. 2-way, 3-way, 4-way and so on. One neat thing you can do with these cards is stack them up in order and flip through them to create a little animation of snowflakes growing from 2-sided to 10-sided.
Each of the two jokers in the deck is different, allowing differentiation based on rank which is useful in certain card games. Plus it was fun to design two!
As an artist, I make art for the sake of it because I enjoy the process and the end result, but I also want my art to touch people and move them in some way. And lately, I've been thinking about how to do that in more concrete ways, ways that actually benefit people.
So what I've decided to do is to donate card decks to worthy causes in the hopes that I can make a difference in the lives of at least a few people for perhaps just a brief moment.
If this campaign reaches its funding goal, I plan to order extra decks so that after all the rewards are fulfilled I can donate at least 250 card decks to various organizations like volunteer magician's groups, children's hospitals, public elemantary schools, and public libraries.
There are several volunteer magicians groups that I plan to support. One of them is Open Heart Magic, www.openheartmagic.org. They're based in Chicago and they visit local hospitals to perform for the kids there. I'm the parent of a 10-year old girl myself, so I can imagine what it must be like to watch your child suffer through an injury or sickness. This Kickstarter campaign represents my desire to use my art to help brighten the lives of those children.
Another group is called Magic is Medicine, www.magicismedicine.org. They also perform for kids in hospitals but also for injured or disabled adults and the elderly.
I also personally know of a magician in New York who volunteers his time at the emergency room and performs card tricks for kids. When he's done, he gives them the card deck to keep. He's told me that for all of those kids, receiving that card deck makes their day and goes a long way towards easing the trauma of the injuries they suffered which landed them in the hospital.
Regarding hospitals, public schools, and public libraries, I will be starting with my local area in San Jose, CA and then expanding out from there.
Once Kinetic Playing Cards gets going as a bona fide card deck business, my policy will be to donate one deck for every three decks sold, so that I can expand the reach of the donation program as the business grows.
If you know of or have an organizaton that would like to receive card decks for a worthy cause, please let me know. I'm continually expanding my list of organizations that I plan to send decks to and I'm always looking for more.
If the funding goal is exceeded, I will be looking at stretch goals for additional rewards for backers as well as increasing the number of donated decks for each stretch goal we hit. The more funding the campaign receives, the more decks can get donated, and the more people can be touched.
I hope to encourage my fellow card deck creators to follow suit (no pun intended!) and donate their decks to these and other causes. Together we can leverage our love of playing cards to help make a difference in the lives of children and adults who need it.
Pledging and Rewards
I want to keep the pledging straightforward to both make it easy to figure out the reward you want as well as to make sure that all pledges will be delivered quickly and correctly after the campaign is over. It may look like there’s a lot of pledge levels to choose from, but it’s actually quite simple. The reward tiers contain pledge levels of 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 8 decks, as well as tiers for a full brick of card decks. For each of the pledge levels of card decks, there’s an early-bird tier that gets you a lower price for getting in on the project early.
All pledges levels have US shipping included. Shipping to outside the United States is an additional charge, which specified in the reward descriptions. If you would like your reward shipped outside the US, please add the correct amount into your pledge.
It's just me running this project, so depending on how many backers the project gets, I will be looking into using a fulfillment company to send out the card decks. Exactly how many they ship versus how many I ship myself will depend on the amount of backers at each reward tier. If there are only a few backers at a particular tier, I'll ship those myself, otherwise I'll have the fulfillment company do it. Using the fulfillment company costs extra money, but it will ensure that everyone will receive their rewards in a timely manner.
Thank You for Your Support!
The Eira Ice deck has been exactly one yar in the making, and with your support, it can finally get off my hard drive and into your hands!
Risks and challenges
I believe I have covered all the bases with respect to all aspects of this project:
I have done extensive analysis on the financial aspect on this project and structured the rewards accordingly so I don't run out of money and have to delay or even suspend delivery of rewards to backers.
I have been in contact with the USPCC about this particular project since February 2013 and I've talked to them so much that they know me by my first name.
Mistakenly-entered pledges are a risk to the project if the mistake is large enough. I will be monitoring all the pledges and will attempt to contact the backer if I see a pledges that looks funny. But mistakes made very close to the end of the project are a high risk.
The other major risk is with the USPCC itself. I am entirely at their mercy with respect to the schedule of production as well as the quality of product. They have made some serious production errors on other Kickstarter card deck projects which have resulted in an entire production run needing to be redone. I hope that doesn't happen here, but it is indeed a risk.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)