Green Witch Tarot: The Moon

I’m in the process of illustrating a full tarot deck for Llewellyn Worldwide. My goal is to complete 6 cards every month but goals are unfortunately easier set than completed. In February I fell behind because I miscalculated the time involved in another client commission I had taken on. It isn’t the end of the world though, my hard deadline is a year from now and I am more than confident I will make it.

In February I completed three cards: The Sun, the Moon and The Star and I further have had the sketches approved for the next three cards: The Hanged Man, The Lovers and The Magician. Here is a glimpse of the rough sketches:

 

a series of digital sketches for the Green Witch Tarot

February Tarot Sketches

The symbolism
The Moon - Rider Waite Tarot

Rider Waite Tarot

The completed card I wanted to show you today is The Moon. Traditionally in the Rider-Waite Tarot deck the Moon is filled with symbolism of fear, haunting, worry, doubt and possibly nightmares. The card has to do with sleep, which means it both symbolizes dreams and nightmares.

In the Green Witch tarot the symbolism takes a far more positive spin. A country Witch walks to a pond, surrounded by nine Hazel trees and the flower chamomile which symbolizes calm, intuition and insight. A trout is swimming in the pond, which is a symbol of wisdom and instinct.

I should mention that once this deck is completed there will be a book with a far more in debt descriptions of the cards and their symbolism by Ann Moura, who is the author behind the Green Witch Tarot.

 

 

 

illustration of the moon smiling down at an old witch who is walking towards a pond in the woods at night.

The process
The Moon and The Star in progress.

The Moon and The Star in progress.

I enjoyed illustrating this card, it proved a challenge to create a scene that had enough light in it to print well while still being a good representation of nighttime. During the illustration process the card went through several of color changes before I eventually reached the mood I was looking for.

My painting process is a mix of a a lot of search and find, combined with happy incidents. It’s not an optimal approach, moreso it is a habit I am at current set in.

As I move forward with developing my artistic skills I want to put for effort into the sketching phase to eliminate the many hours spent on search and find later on. I think that working digitally really invites the search and find approach, whereas when you work traditionally you cannot paint over mistakes as frivolously, therefore it becomes necessary to hone your drawing skills and spend more time on the sketch.

I’ve compiled a gif to show you the process:

Illustration Process: The Moon - Green Witch Tarot

Illustration Process: The Moon – Green Witch Tarot

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed this little look into my illustration process. As always I’d love to hear from you, so please leave a comment.

To view all cards posted on the blog so far, please click here: Green Witch Tarot

Links:
Llewellyn Publishing
Ann Moura

Kiri Østergaard Leonard
kiri@kirileonard.com

Award winning Illustrator, Artist and Creator Kiri Østergaard Leonard happily shares her experiences making a living as an artist and pursuing a creative life. She grew up in a tiny village in Denmark, left her country behind to pursue art in the bustle of New York City and now resides in the delightful weirdness of Austin, Texas surrounded by sunshine and felines.

5 Comments

  • Bluebird B.

    20.12.2014 at 07:04 Reply

    Greetings!

    if you would make a special edition of the deck, i’ll be interested to know about it! The cards look awesome! this is a magnificent job! Hard to pick favorites… To name just 5 😉 drawing down the Moon and Sun, the Sidhe, the Horn God, the Hermit.
    I can’t wait for the deck to be out!
    Blessed be.

  • Kate Wolf

    23.11.2014 at 18:09 Reply

    Lovely! Can’t wait till it comes out!
    I saw “The Moon’ on Pinterest, and thought, “What?! How can I not have this deck??”

    • Kiri

      24.11.2014 at 10:32 Reply

      Hi Kate, I’m so glad you like it! There are only 3 months left on my deadline so hopefully the deck will be out not too long after that. No official date yet though.

      Thanks for the comment!

  • Cat Dubh

    03.03.2014 at 07:42 Reply

    Hi Kiri. I expressed my interest in this deck and your artwork on the facebook group, Tarotholics Anonymous! I am delighted that you won the job of illustrator for the deck, The Green Witch Tarot, and will enjoy following your blog of its process and progress very much! Thank you! P.S. I am also delighted to hear that the deck will not have borders……..'tisn't often one finds perfection! Cat

    • Kiri

      03.03.2014 at 22:53 Reply

      Thank you for the comment and the kind words, Cat. I think I’ll have to change my sharing template as you’re not the first to question the white frame as a border, I can see how it is easily confused with my current format so I’ll fix that for future reference. I think the next card to be shared here on the blog will be The Star, so stay tuned!

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