CULT Tarot Update & the Anxiety of Being Halfway Done

CULT Tarot Update & the Anxiety of Being Halfway Done

CULT is officially halfway done (give or take a card of two) and it's shaping up to be the most personal tarot deck I've created to date. I can only hope you trust me enough to wander down this new weird path I am creating. 

The impetus for this deck was born from the overwhelmingly positive feedback to Bridge Witches. The response to the representation I attempted in those cards was so warm and heartfelt—it was shocking and I cannot be more grateful. It taught me that while I struggle to open up about the things that matter to me, there is in fact a place for those thoughts in this world. 

Since childhood, I have worked diligently to build a world inside myself in which to escape. You can never be bored when your mind is filled with different places to wander around and ideas to pour over. Over time, I began to see the risks in being honest about my feelings and I built a barrier between my inner thoughts and the rest of the world. That has extended to becoming rather private and even hiding entirelyan example: with the exception of one year, I'm not in my high school year books, anywhere; I think one year I even went entirely unmentioned. In adulthood, while I think I'm pretty friendly, I don't open up to people easily outside of a basic script. Instead, who I am comes out in the work.

CULT is a horror themed deck about gender and queerness. Cups are vampire themed, sword are ghosts/possessions, coins are witches, and wands are devils. Since always, we have used horror to talk about the things that scare us. Well, talking about myself scares me, so I'm doing it with horror references.

Defining myself has always felt like picking a team. Well, I went to art school and most of us are not "team players". Instead, I am defined by my lack of definition. I'm attracted to people and the contents of their mind, not a gender. While I would classify myself as a woman, someone once called me "Sir" on accident and I really liked it. The beauty of gender fluidity has always been a topic I live to explore in my figurative work. 

A cult is a group of people with beliefs that seem strange to the status quo. I'm taking the word and twisting it for my own purpose. What if it's the status quo that holds the strange beliefs and upholds a dangerous obsession with unattainable standards? Instead, the group of "misfits" in these cards are examples of living life beyond the invisible barriers of society.

Thirty-five "completed" cards were sent off to the printer for a proof and will be ready for sharing in 11 days time. I say "completed" because there is a chance I will get the cards back and decide to make changes or find errors that need adjusting.

Below are the images for the 35 cards. Notice they have a signature in most of them—that won't be in the final deck but for now, consider it a watermark. 

While you're waiting for the deck to be completed you can pre-order this deck and get some 12x18 prints of the finished cards. $3 from every CULT print goes to the Sunrise Movement.

Leave a comment with your thoughts :) 

(NSFW images below)

Tarot Reading for Atheists

Tarot Reading for Atheists

What do you mean "Atheist"?

Well, I mean that I don't believe in any kind of god, spirit, or omnipresent anything. Instead I'm a big fan of quantum physics and firmly believe that when I die I'm dead and there's no afterlife. 

What I don't believe in however is arguing or attempting to disprove other people's beliefs. That's pretty rude in my opinion. Faith in anything (or lack there of) is a personal choice. Once your personal choice infringes on someone else making that same choice—that's pretty lame. This is a two way street. If your beliefs excuse bad behavior, I'm not here to defend that either.

But you use tarot?

Yes! I read for myself regularly. Tarot cards are little stories that react to each other—changing the narrative depending on which cards are laid out together. I use self-readings to ask myself questions and look at problems from a different perspective. 

Example time!

Using a three card draw, I look at:

1. The Situation: What's the thing that's bugging me the most.

2. The Action: What can I do (or not do) to address or accept the situation?

3. The Outcome: What is possible? This isn't reading the future. By the time I see the second card, I have a sense of where the reading is going. The third card is usually a confirmation of the Action card.

Let me show you what I mean:

Question: I'm frustrated and tired but I just started a big new project, am I burnt out before I even start? I feel defeated and worn out.

A turn of the cards reveal:

 

ace of cups knight of wands ten of cups

Ace of Cups: My cup do runneth over! Yes this new project is a lot but I am reminded how much I love this stage, when I have lots of drawing ahead of me. I'm also REALLY lucky to be in a place where I work on these things full time.

Knight of Wands (reversed): Yeah, you've got a lot of creative spirit, but you also know that a big project means you have to chip away at things a little bit at a time. Burn out is real. You also can't just work when the mood strikes, you have to show up to put in the time each day! You are lucky to even have the space to do it!

Ten of Cups: If you heed this, it's likely to result in a harmonious conclusion. You can never know what the future holds, but you have been at this long enough to realize that slow and steady wins the race. You also have an amazing support system of people you can rely on and relax with when not at your desk drawing.

 

I hope this was enlightening! How do you use tarot?!

What I Read When I Want to Draw

What I Read When I Want to Draw

 

I have always been inspired by books. There is something about reading that paints detailed pictures in my head and fuels my creativity. My preference is to mix it up between reference books and fun fiction. With COVID-19 still out there, I'm planning on sitting inside and reading as much as possible this summer. Have you read any of these?

June & July 2020

Find me on Goodreads and read along :D  

 

Become a Card in CULT

Become a Card in CULT

In the latest update of Bridge Witches: A Tarot Deck, I made a special pre-order option for people who wanted to become cards in the deck. For a cost, you could choose a card to be featured on in the deck. For those that would rather not have their own face on the card, they suggested a story or historical figure to feature. For a little bit more support, they got a card and an 8x10 framed print of the cards. Those that chose to pre-order also got their decks weeks before everyone else—getting one of the first decks to roll off the press.

I've just started work on CULT: A Tarot Deck and would love to offer a pre-order option again. I'm changing the pricing structure and what comes with the pre-order.

  • Regular Pre-Order: $60.00 for a deck
  • Build a Card: $70.00 to help design a card and get your deck even before pre-orders.

The Regular option is to receive a deck when it's ready. The price includes free shipping in the United States and to Canada, (everyone else see here for shipping rates). 

The Build a Card option is to be a model for a card yourself or, if you want, to help design the card. 

We can collaborate! All modeling for this option is clothed. We can discuss via email or Google Meet what you would like to do for the card and I will give some direction for taking a good reference photo. There are only 10 slots and I am making decisions about cards right now so if you want to do this I suggest getting in touch ASAP. People who purchase this option will be the first to get their decks when they are ready.

August 2020 Update

As of August 12th I am about half way done with the drawings! The next step will be to prepare the deck for printing and then create the guide. My hope was to have decks shipped before Halloween but right now the news is looking really grim for the US Postal Service and I am concerned this will delay the supply chain and getting the decks shipped out to customers. Therefore, I am pushing back my tentative shipping date to late November 2020 to ensure I have enough time to get things in the mail and on their way to customers. If you have further questions please email hello@ki11erpancake.com.

New Addition to KI11ERPANCAKE Tarot: CULT

New Addition to KI11ERPANCAKE Tarot: CULT

When I started making tarot cards about four years ago, I figured it would be a one and done thing. Well, all this time later and there's still a lot more that I want to explore through the cards. Tarot plays with narrative—employing nonlinear storytelling that the reader can revisit infinitely and get different perspectives. This deck looks at the societal construct that is gender and the beauty of the human figure through a horror lens.

Background

As a kid, I was entranced by the "bad guys". From Doctor Blight in Captain Planet and Natasha Fatale of Rocky and Bullwinkle fame, to Ursula the Sea Witch—the strongest female characters of my 90s childhood were evil women.

Being the good girl, in my little mind, seemed to always align with a compromise in freedom. You couldn't be single or chose to be child free without regret and loneliness. Instead, you had to settle for "Prince Charming" and ride off into the sunset. Being a girl meant something specific that never fit right.

At fifteen, I found art and the queer goth kids at the club. It changed everything. While not having the words for it—gender was clearly a social construct and cultural expectations were the oppressive tools of the patriarchy. I embraced Byronic heroes and gothic horror because I saw myself there. I didn't need a "happy ending". This however, came at a cost to my own self-esteem. You had to either be a "good girl" or a "bad" one and "bad girls" couldn't be happy. 

As an adult, I learned about the tropes that villianized not only white women, but queer people and people of color. As I waded into defining my own queer identity I still leaned on my gothy heroes.

This tarot deck is a negotiation. I want to embrace the devils, the witches, the ghosts, and the vampires who welcomed me. I want to celebrate their power and the beauty of gender fluidity. I want to remember my teachers and realize their humanity in the cards. Except, not every association is perfect. I'm choosing to burn the association of "failure" or even "damnation" with these "bad guys". You can be a weird, mysterious, and spooky kid and love your body and your life. 

My characters and the references I make in the deck are flawed—because I am. Because we all are. 

Introducing CULT: A Tarot Deck

I’m really excited to introduce the newest installment to the KI11ERPANCAKE tarot card collection, Cult: A Tarot Deck. This one dives into queer and feminist themes but is drenched in horror references—kinda like an episode of American Horror Story.

The Suits

Swords are ghosts

Wands are devils

Coins are witches

Cups are vampires

While I draw the deck

  • Prints are available of each card as it's completed for the deck. See available prints.
  • Regular blog posts sharing drawing tutorials and resources that I enjoy using (reference resources, brushes, etc.)
  • There will not be a printed guide for this deck to reduce the cost of production, shipping, and save some trees. Instead, I will have a digital resource through this website. It will be a mobile-ready PDF with bookmarks for easy reference. I am also creating a quick reference for people who want something to print out while they read cards.

Be a Card in the New Deck!

As a special pre-order option I have spots open in the deck for you to purchase. You can either become a card yourself or we can collaborate on designing a card! I have offered this in the past and y’all seemed to love it so I am excited to do this again. Learn more here.

When will it be done?

As of August 12th I am about half way done with the drawings! The next step will be to prepare the deck for printing and then create the guide. My hope was to have decks shipped before Halloween but right now the news is looking really grim for the US Postal Service and I am concerned this will delay the supply chain and getting the decks shipped out to customers. Therefore, I am pushing back my tentative shipping date to late November 2020 to ensure I have enough time to get things in the mail and on their way to customers. If you have further questions please email hello@ki11erpancake.com.

May 26, 2020 — Genevieve Barbee-Turner