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Tarot Illuminati Kit Cards – May 8, 2013
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About the Author
Kim Huggens has been studying Tarot since the age of 9, and is the co-author of Sol Invictus: The God Tarot (Schiffer Publications, 2007) and in-progress companion deck Pistis Sophia: The Goddess Tarot. She lives in Cardiff, UK, where she works as a veterinary receptionist part-time to fund her university studies in Ancient History. She moved to Cardiff in 2002 for her undergraduate degree in Philosophy, and also graduated with an MA in Religion in Late Antiquity from Cardiff University in 2007. Kim has given numerous talks and workshops on the subject of Tarot, divination, Paganism and mythology in the UK, and regularly runs Tarot courses. She is a practicing Vodouisante and Thelemite, and a member of the OTO. She lives with her partner and cat, and in her spare time plays Call of Cthulhu, Dungeons and Dragons, writes short fiction, goes for walks in graveyards and wishes she could translate Sumerian.
Erik C. Dunne is an artist who works on commisioned projects. He's traveled extensively, retracing the footsteps of legendary kings and queens, riding camels across the dunes of Persia, and galloping heavy steeds across fields of gold. A classically trained artist, his medium of choice is digital, where he has allowed his passion for costume design and his roots in the theater to lend their resounding voices to each and every card he creates.~
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The book has a color print of each card, which I always appreciate, and was written by Kim Huggens who wrote Tarot 101 (highly recommended). There is mention on p. 152 of an ebook called The Tarot Illuminati Revealed, which (I think) is now titled "Complete Guide to Tarot Illuminati" and available on Kindle.
The deck is amazing. To me, this is a deck of dream images. While most dream decks are filled with wispy/foggy images in watercolor and pastel, these images are instead what I see when I dream: they are lush, eerily beautiful, highly detailed, and hyperrealistic. The complexity of the images makes these cards utterly fascinating; here are images that confound the eye, and pull the viewer into their world.
Thank you, Erik Dunne, for your genius!
Update: It wasn't until I went to shuffle the cards for the first time that I noticed bits of paper had come off the backs of several of the cards. This must have occurred when I pulled the cards apart. It's not unusual for brand new cards to stick together a bit, but I've never seen them damaged. (All swords, too. Hmmm.) It makes the deck useless for divination. I am having Amazon send me a new deck and returning this one.
Update II: I received the replacement deck 2 days later, and it is perfect! The cards didn't stick together at all.
All in all I can't give enough stars 10! 17! 42! Best deck ever!
The cards themselves have gilt edges, which are beautiful, but as some remarked, they did make the cards stick together. I ended up having to pry up some of the edges on the artwork, which was unfortunate. The artwork itself is fairly intricate and dreamlike, but in many instances I felt it looked too photomanipulated, even sometimes too Photoshop amateur hour. Overall it's lovely, though. I personally liked that the entire Pentacles suit had a Chinese theme and the Wands suit had a Middle Eastern theme. I don't often see people who look like me in western-made Tarot decks, so it's a wonderful touch.
They'll be an easy read if you're used to the Rider-Waite; the imagery is heavily lifted from that standard. The Pages and Knights are replaced by Princesses and Princes, which suits the deck theme. However with the gilt edges, they stick together too much to be practical, so I may just keep this one as a display set or use it for plot ideas when I write.
I was drawn to this artwork, it's gorgeous, sumptuous, I love how it borrows from different time periods and cultures, the gold highlights are amazing. The artwork is so detailed however, that the details are lost or just hard to see when reduced to the size of a Tarot card. So if you are not familiar with the meanings of the cards, this deck may be too challenging. I would recommend it for advanced readers. I'm getting back into Tarot cards after a while and I think I prefer simpler art.
I wish that you could buy larger prints of these cards!