If you pledge to receive a deck, you will have the option of which style (Color & Blackout). If you choose the "And One for a Friend" tier, you will be able to choose which style for both decks. This means that you can get one of each or two of the same.
The goal of this project is to create a tarot deck which can be read intuitively based on symbols and patterns instead of full illustrations. The project aims to provide a tool for beginners to learn tarot in a brand new way, and for experienced readers to garner a better understanding of the underlying symbols and elements behind the 78 keys of the tarot.
Symbolism is tremendously important because people can learn symbols easier than they can learn languages. Sigils are like a word in a language; they can be simple or complex, but they express meaning in just the same way, tracing our human understanding of concepts and communication back to the days of cave paintings or cuneiform. The best part is that they can be universal. A word of no language is a word in all languages.
The symbols used in this deck are based on hermetic and alchemical concepts.Over two years of research has gone in to making sure that each of the individual components are accurate; such as the alchemical process (or "magnum opus"), the four classical elements, the seven planets, the constellations of the Greek zodiac, the kabbalah, as well as the attributions of the Thoth tarot and the Waite tarot systems.
This deck can be considered a Thoth compatible deck since it follows the same order in terms of the Major Arcana, and all of correspondences match the Thoth system. This choice was made to ensure that the attributions are as close to accurate as possible, a task which turns out to be more difficult than it may seem at first, because many tarot decks deviate from standards, and the two primary decks of the modern day (Thoth and Waite) deviate slightly from each other.
These cards feature unique line-art sigils which incorporate the alchemical, zodiacal, planetary, and elemental symbols associated with the Thoth tarot, compounded into visual interpretations of the majors themselves.
The aces feature the classical symbol for the element of the suit, in which is a line art drawing depicting the energy of that element.
The 2 - 10 of each suit feature unique sigils made up of the planetary and zodiacal pair multiplied by the number of the card, as well as featuring the roman numeral at the top, and a series of three symbols at the bottom: The planet, the element, and the zodiac.
The court cards feature a stick figure depicting their role, as well as the element for each position and each suit; e.g. the King of Wands will feature the symbol for Air with a K denoting King, and the symbol for Fire denoting the suit.
Each of the Major Arcana features a spectrum gradient of colors that relate to the energies of the card, and are particularly situated around each of those relative symbols; e.g. XVII The Star features a pentagram, hexagram, and double-heptagram. Inside the heptagram are the seven planets of alchemy, each colored according to their Sephirotic attributions (Mercury is orange, the Moon is purple, Venus is green, etc).
The Minor Arcana feature a two-tone color scheme to match the element. The core pips are the color of the element, and the special design is a shade darker, while the numerals and symbols at the bottom are white.
The base deck will have 80 cards; the 22 Major Arcana, 56 Minor Arcana, a thank you card, and a special extra card which features the back image on both sides, representing the silence. This extra card often comes up when the answer is already known.
The standard box will be made of sturdy paper, and will have enough room to fit the deck and booklet. The booklet itself will be around 100 pages and will feature information about all symbols and cards, divinatory meanings, suggestions for interpretation, and an explanation of the forces of Alchemy.
The Blackout Edition of the Sigil Arcanum Tarot--which will feature all the same cards--will be printed with rich glossy ink offset on a substantial matte black paper stock. The result is a mesmerizing and sleek appearance which is best read by candle light. The deck appears entirely black on black, and you must shed light on the cards to reveal their hidden meanings.
The edges of the cards appear matte black due to the card stock, which adds to the dark effect. The box will be printed on the same matte black cover, with thicker, more sturdy paper, and will be printed offset to give the same illusory appearance. The booklet, however, will be printed normally, because let's face it, nobody would want an all black instruction booklet.
All tiers will have the option of either Full Color or Blackout Edition.
Quality Overhaul - $50,000
- Box Upgrade to double-cube telescoping box
- Card edges gilded silver (black for the blackout deck)
- Protective UV coating on cards and box (for colored deck)
- Booklet upgrade to perfect-bound mini-book
Full-Size Book - $60,000
The book will be between 150 - 170 pages, and will go much further detailing the symbolism used in each card, the historical significance of each symbol, plus more interpretations on symbolism and how to read the deck, including a multitude of spreads (both static and modular), as well as a brief history of Alchemy and Tarot.
Once the Campaign ends this weekend, I will be able to send out a survey to everyone who backed at any tier. The Survey will finalize payment options and shipping information, so that I will have the info I need to get everyone their rewards. Because of the relative simplicity of this Kickstarter, I've decided to keep the survey fairly simple, but I also want people to have a variety of options for the tiers that we have.
If you chose the $5 tier - A Solitary Card, you will not have to worry too much about this, because I only have 78 of those (since they come from one unique deck), and I don't have duplicates. I will be picking which card to give after a very thorough shuffle so that it remains random and fair. If there are less than 22 people I will just use the Majors - they're more fun anyway.
If you backed the $10 tier - Limited Edition Print, you will have a slew of options! First off is the aforementioned style, you can choose either the Blackout style or this digital watercolor style. Second is the design itself. I have opened this up to all Major Arcana cards, so you may choose what you'd like.
If you backed for 1, 2, or 3 copies of the deck, you will be given the option to choose which style deck you would like for each copy that you're getting, in any combination.
If you backed for a deck and a reading, you will be able to choose what style of deck, and book a time with me via email. If you live in the Twin Cities or close by and you're willing to come to Minneapolis I will meet up with you personally. Otherwise we can just set up a Skype call for your Hour-long reading.
If you backed at the $220+ tier for Retailers Only, the Survey will help you get in touch with me so we can take care of the business end of things, and figure out shipping.
If you backed at the very limited edition $300 tier - The Deck & A Handmade Box, you will also have several options. I am only making 6 of these, one for myself and 5 for you folks. Mine will not be numbered, and as such, each of the other ones will be numbered out of 5. I am still working on blueprints for the box, but I have a wonderful dad who lets me use his wood shop tools. The box will be made of pine wood (because Minnesota) and feature a wood-burned design.
So here's your options:
- Color: Natural Pine, Dark Red Stain, Painted Black, Painted White
- Design: The Eye, Fibonacci Squares, The Magnum Opus / Circled Square
In whatever combination.
Regardless of what tier you selected, or if you only backed without a reward, you will have the option of selecting Add-ons through BackerKit. Some people have messaged me and asked how they'll be able to purchase more than 3 decks, or whether they'll be able to buy a poster if they selected a deck tier. You will be able to add on additional decks for $40 each. You will also be able to add on a Poster for $10.
Risks and challenges
I've worked hard on mitigating any risks or challenges along the way, and I've come up with what I believe to be a stable plan for producing the deck (and the other pieces like the box and book) efficiently, cost-effectively, and in the United States. Costs of printing in the United States can be a little higher, but this means I can keep the business local to my home state Minnesota, and I can pick up, assemble, store, and ship all the decks myself.
A breakdown of Costs for transparency's sake:
- The Decks: $7,500 for 1,000 units
- The Boxes and Books: $8,460 for 1,000 units
- Tooling Fees: $1368 for the boxes
- Shipping: Roughly $7 - $8 per deck, so around $7,500
- Storage: I have secured a safe, climate controlled space for the decks, so I'm not including this in the calculation of the costs for Kickstarter.
- I also need a way to seal the decks. My two options are plastic wrap or stickers, and I'm leaning more toward stickers. Cost for 1,000 stickers would be roughly $45 - $50, something I will cover out of pocket as well, since it's such a low cost.
This brings the total cost for all pieces to $25,078. Seventy-Eight dollars higher than the goal for this project. One dollar per card in the tarot, and if this project funds at $25K I will supply whatever else is required to get it done and shipped out.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)