The Ace prototypes


Here are pictures of the Ace prototypes that are going out this week as prizes for the Kether is in Malkuth contest:

Ace of WandsAce of CupsAce of SwordsAce of Disks

As a disclaimer I have to say that these will not end up being the Aces for the Tabula Mundi tarot deck when it finally manifests as a full 78 card deck. But they started as such. Originally, my intention was to do all of the minors as oil paintings. But I am considering the possibility that I want the deck to have a unified look. I might end up doing these Aces over completely, and having the oil paintings I did be in my next and third deck (assuming I finish this one) which will be done in oils, or maybe I will do these over in the same media as the Majors and include them in Tabula Mundi, or maybe they will end up being the Aces for the deck as is, and the only cards of Tabula Mundi that are done as oil paintings.

What do you think? Do these Aces over, in a similar design but in pen and ink style like the Majors? Do them over completely, new design, and have these be in deck #3, should it ever manifest…or, keep them as is as the Aces of Tabula Mundi, but do the rest of the minors in pen and ink? The Aces are singular, after all. But since I am not the best oil painter, maybe they are not up to snuff; I can’t decide right now.

Please let me know your thoughts. I will end up doing whatever feels right to me, but I am open to hear your opinions!

*edited to add: decision made. These will be in my third deck, and Tabula Mundi tarot Aces will be redone.

Ace of Wands
Ace of Wands copyright 2014 M.M. Meleen
Ace of Cups
Ace of Cups copyright 2014 M.M. Meleen
Ace of Swords
Ace of Swords copyright 2014 M.M. Meleen


Ace of Disks
Ace of Disks copyright 2014 M.M. Meleen

Ace of WandsAce of CupsAce of SwordsAce of Disks

5 thoughts on “The Ace prototypes

  1. Hey MM, so I’m going to throw an entirely different POV into the mix– I agree to go with your gut– but since I’ve read the posting, I can’t help but toss my hat into the ring. The artwork for these aces is really strong and the medium feels well executed– don’t doubt your abilities there! But here is how I see it right now– these aces to me feel like they are for a ‘different collection’ or a new deck. Here’s the way I see it on my end.

    One of the things I love most about Tabula Mundi right now for the Majors– is the way it delivers traditional Tarot symbolism with such a fresh, witty, modern sensibility. The Magus is a DJ, the Chariot is a surfer, and even cards like the Empress and High Priestess have an edgy, urban, dynamic feeling. And the way you execute it is so incredibly cool! Unlike some artists who would try to make a deck feel ‘modern,’ and maybe throw out the ‘magic’ of Tarot in the process, you’ve made something so refreshing and different! I’d hoped that the entire deck would carry through that edgy kind of vibe! I fell in love with that sense of spirit to the deck, and I’d hate to see it go! Also, I feel like these aces don’t showcase your incredible geometric work– I know it’s in there, but usually whenever I look at a card from you, it really wallops me with that high-stimulation from the images, angles, and shapes that jump out with such a wow-factor!

    Also, a smaller thing– but the majors also use a color pallet that makes use of a lot of contrasting colors, while these ones have a more ‘muted’ tone. I personally love the contrast (I feel it is a part of your signature as an artist alongside the geometrics), but to me it really is the modern/urban twist that highlighted the majors that doesn’t seem to be present here. I think introducing that back into the equation would bring back the sense of cohesion to the deck.

    1. I totally get what you are saying, and I think that is why I kept feeling that these are another deck or series in the making. Just feels very daunting to take that in! Thanks for confirming these feelings, and for noticing the geometries and the effort I put into the color choices in the Majors. It feels great to know that it comes through. Things are definitely gestating now, so hopefully soon I have some new ones to put out here that will be right for this deck.

  2. They are totally stunning. Each of them uniquely delivers Thoth-based meanings with the greatest impact.
    Looking forward to appreciating them in real life soon.
    Thank you soooooooo much for this wonderful opportunity 😀

  3. WOW. If this would be the four Aces, I then wonder how the four Princesses will be? But they’ve do have a great connection to each other.

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