Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Tarot Tuesday: The Emperor

It's that time again! Today I'd like to share another of the Major Arcana cards with you: 

The Emperor - 10" x 16.5" Oil on watercolor paper.
This guy was lots of fun as I always enjoy creating humanoid creatures that are part human with other animal features. The Emperor here is depicted as a version of Cernunnos, or "The Horned God" in Celtic Paganism. I can't go much more into explanations on the other symbolism as I don't want to go against or assume what the author has in mind, but I think everything works really well together in this one. 

This one didn't require too much preliminary sketching because the description given to me by the author, Melanie Marquis, provided a pretty clear mental image for what I want the final to look like. Here's a thumbnail I created for approval: 

Once the thumbnail was given the OK I went ahead with photos and created the charcoal sketch: 

10" x 16.5" Charcoal and digital.
If you compare the sketch with the final, I decided to shrink his head a little as it got slightly on the large side in the sketch. 

That's all for today! Next week's post may be delayed, as I will be travelling and might not have internet access, but never fear! I'll post as soon as I can soon after. Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Tarot Tuesday (Wednesday): Knight of Swords

Maybe I should start calling these Tarot Wednesday since I've been good about forgetting to post on actual tuesdays.... Oh well! 

Today, I present to you the Knight of Swords:
10.5" x 17.25" - Oil on watercolor paper
 I really like all of the knights cards from this deck because they are all riding interesting animals. As you can see with my previous post with the Knight of Cups here. I love horses, but who doesn't want to paint a guy riding on a charging bull? 

For this one, I did a couple thumbnails to try to determine which route to go with the illustration: 

The first thumbnail was a bit pulled back with a more heroic pose, and the second option is based on the original Rider-Waite design seen above with the knight charging across the image. The writer and I decided to go with the second image and I was off to sketch. Due to time constraints I decided to do the sketch digitally: 

  I like to do most of the sketching and final work with the card template visible so that I can keep in mind the final crop and text placement for the printed version of the cards.

Well that's all for today. Until next week!