Tag Archives: Patrick Valenza

Interview: Patrick Valenza

DeviantMoonBorderless_14Wands***LEAVE A COMMENT AND BE IN A DRAWING TO WIN YOUR OWN COPY OF THE DEVIANT MOON TAROT BORDERLESS EDITION***

Please help us welcome Patrick Valenza creator of the Deviant Moon Tarot, the borderless Deviant Moon Tarot and the Deviant Moon book. Interviewed here by Arwen Lynch, he shares thoughts on both versions of the Deviant Moon as well as his Deviant Moon book and his process.

Patrick says, “One of the best parts of creating the deck was “hunting” for specific textures as I respectfully tiptoed around the graveyards of eastern Long Island, N.Y. Background buildings were created with photographs I took from a local abandoned insane asylum. Rotted doors, windows and walls became castles, factories and cities.”

Arwen Lynch: Who or what first interested you in the tarot or in oracle cards?DeviantMoonBorderless_0Fool
Patrick Valenza: I discovered the tarot when I was about eight or nine years old back in 1975. The images fascinated my young mind and I studied them intently. While most of my friends copied drawings of Batman or Superman, I was busy designing the Fool and the Magician along the margins of my schoolwork.

AL: What is your favorite card in the deck?
PV: My favorite cards tend to be the darker ones, such as Death, the Devil and the Tower. My least favorite has always been the Hierophant.

DeviantMoonBorderless_5HierophantArwen Lynch: What was the first deck that truly inspired you?
PV: The first deck that inspired me as a child was the 1JJ Swiss deck as well as the Rider-Waite. When I became a teenager, I discovered images of the Visconti-Sforza Tarot, which inspired me to try and create my own hand-painted deck. The hand-painted deck I made in my adolescence later became the Deviant Moon when I reached middle age.

 

 

 

 

AL: What card in the Deviant Moon was the most challenge to paint?
PV: The most challenging aspect of the deck was trying to create custom gold coins for the Suit of Coins out of clay, which I then photographed and put into the art. So difficult, in fact, that I scrapped them and changed the suit to Pentacles after I had already submitted all the artwork to U.S. Games Systems for final publication. The coins just ruined the deck, however I may try them again in a future tarot project.

DeviantMoonBorderless_5Pentacles

AL: What lessons did you learn along the way?
PV: I learned a great deal of technical skills during the deck’s creation, such as Photoshop and digital photography. Up until the Deviant Moon, I was mainly a draftsman working in colored pencil.

AL: What card was the most challenging to write about for the upcoming companion book?
PV: Writing for the companion book was the most challenging project I ever worked on. I created the artwork for the Deviant Moon subconsciously. Writing about it made me stop and analyze the aftermath of it all. The book took almost three years to write. At times, I would spend days trying to find the right words for a simple paragraph. It was quite an accomplishment for me to finish it and my reward came when I hand delivered it to the good folks at U.S. Games Systems last spring.

DeviantMoonBorderless_2HighPriestessAL: How do you deal with creative block issues? Do you have any suggestions for those reading this?
PV: When I get creative blocks, I get out of my own way and let my unconscious mind take control. This is the part that connects best to my Muse. I just keep working until I get it. I usually figure out an artistic problem when I am waiting on line at a supermarket, driving, in the shower, or doing other mundane things that have nothing to do with my projects.

AL: What has been your greatest joy about the launch of your borderless deck?
PV: The borderless Deviant Moon came out over five years after the original. To me, it seems as if it is an entirely different deck and has its own personality. I am thrilled to see that so many feel the same way.

AL: What surprised you the most about creating your deck?
PV: The greatest surprise was how the deck connected me to so many people around the world. I love to hear from folks who say they were inspired in some way by the Deviant Moon.

AL: Name three people who are personal inspirations in the tarot or oracle world?DeviantMoonBorderless_11Cups
PV: Without question, Stuart Kaplan was my greatest tarot inspiration. When I discovered my first tarot deck as a boy, I was curious to know where these amazing cards came from, so I looked on the back of the box and saw his name. I used to think he was a wizard of same kind!
I also admire Paulina Cassidy for her magical illustrative style, as well as Lisa Hunt for her wonderful artistry and work ethic.

AL: Who are your favorite artists?
PV: My favorite style of art comes from pioneering animators such as Max Fleischer and Winsor McCay. I also admire all the unknown medieval woodblock cutters who created early tarot decks. Other favorites are Joan Miro, Max Ernst and Picasso.

AL: What do you do in your leisure time?
PV: In my leisure time I enjoy working on my creations. Luckily for me, work and play are the same.

AL: What is one piece of advice you would offer someone who wanted to create his or her own deck?
DeviantMoonBorderless_2SwordsPV: My advice would be to love it or leave it. You need to put your entire soul into an undertaking such as this for many, many years without expecting any reward in return. There are a zillion decks out there already. Make yours unique! Give it everything you’ve got!

AL: What does the future look like from your side of the computer?
PV: Right now I am working on three different decks at the same time, as well as a children’s book that I want to finish. The Deviant Moon has a sister deck, which I hope to submit for publication very soon.

Visit Patrick’s Deviant Moon site to learn more about his process and projects.

***LEAVE A COMMENT AND BE IN A DRAWING TO WIN YOUR OWN COPY OF THE DEVIANT MOON TAROT BORDERLESS EDITION***

#Tarot Thoughts On A February Full Moon 2012

FullmoontreeTomorrow, February 7th brings us a Full Moon in the sign of Leo. Native American tribes refer to it as the Full Snow Moon, the Little Famine Moon, or the Full Hunger Moon, referencing the time of year, weather conditions, and how the tribes were affected. Leo brings in the energy of an increased sense of purpose, and how we creatively express that purpose.

The Full Moon itself is viewed by many as a time for bringing to fruition the seeds that were sown during the New Moon, and releasing those things that are no longer working for  us. While I do hold that to be true, I also believe that the full energy of the Moon can be used to begin new projects. The choice of releasing the old, bringing in the new, or doing a combination of both is up to each individual.

We will be looking at our individual freedom (which is rapidly changing as the structures that make up our society change), as well as our responsibility to community (local and global). We need to take care of ourselves – to create personal time, to take the time to meditate, ground ourselves, and connect with whatever we accept as Spirit. A new paradigm is coming into being – as we adjust to it, we need to find our sense of balance in life – personal/professional, work/play, family/self … the list goes on.

Leo is all about spontaneity and freedom of expression. It is also good to remember that Leo is a Fire sign – it wants to be out and about and doing things! It is time to share stories, and to allow ourselves to grow from both sharing our own stories, and listening to other people’s stories.

Leo also asks us to express our dreams and hopes for the future. To do this, we need to be grounded in the present. Other energies to keep in mind as we navigate the Leo Full Moon are those of the Hierophant (2012 is a number five year, relating to the Hierophant in the Tarot), and the Dragon (from the Chinese New Year, which started January 23rd).

The Leo Full Moon has a partner in all this – the Aquarius Sun. While the Leo Full Moon is more about individual self-expression, the Aquarius Sun brings our energy and focus to the common good, towards helping humanity as a whole. It is all about community, groups, and social causes. Push/Pull between individual good and common good.

One way to share our stories is through divinatory readings. I am going to add the small thought here that these readings can be done as individuals, or they can be done within a group setting. Or we can read as individuals with a focus on global issues/connections. Do what feels right for you.

This is my offering for the Leo Full Moon. Cards were drawn from Patrick Valenza’s “Deviant Moon Tarot” .

My Story

DM Knight of Cups_NEWDM Page of Cups_NEWDM Queen of Swords_NEW

DM Magician_NEWDM Knight of Wands_NEW
DM Empress_NEWDM Five of Swords_NEWDM The Hermit_NEW
DM The World_NEWDM Ace of Pentacles_NEW

  1. What am I conscious of on this Full Moon? Knight of  Cups
  2. What am I not conscious of on this Full Moon? Page of Cups
  3. What is coming into my consciousness on this Full Moon? Queen of Swords
  4. What do I need to release? The Magician
  5. What do I need to bring in? Knight of Wands
  6. How can I access my creative self? The Empress
  7. How can I best express my creative self as an individual? Five of Swords
  8. How can I best express my creative self within community? The Hermit
  9. What new goals am I forming? The World
  10.  Where are these new goals taking me? Ace of Pentacles

The Seeker is conscious of new information coming into a situation, and, on a more personal level, of the influences that a possible romantic interest is bringing into their life. It can well be that the new insights, and new opportunities, are opening up because they are opening themselves up to another person. 

The Seeker is not yet conscious of the fact that they are accessing their imagination, and their creative/emotional self. They are beginning to experience and express a greater degree of compassion in their life.

What is coming into the consciousness of the Seeker is a need to get to the truth of things – in their own life, and in the world around them. During this time, the Seeker will be walking alone.

The Seeker literally needs to release their need to control everything, and to be the one that makes things happen in their life. They need to step back, take a time out, and learn to flow with life, to allow Spirit to do its work.

What the Seeker needs to bring in is the ability to make decisions on the fly (sometimes pondering too much is not a good thing!), to allow themselves to be impulsive from time to time, and to go on a journey that may come to them in a very sudden manner.

The Seeker can access their creative self by being willing to nurture themselves, to give themselves time and attention. They also need to open themselves up to the feminine mysteries. The Seeker needs to be willing to birth their own ideas.

The Seeker can best express themselves in a creative way as an individual by living their life in harmony with those around them, by not creating or adding to conflict.

The Seeker can best express themselves in a creative way in community by going within themselves, recognizing the answers they will find there, and sharing the strength of that wisdom with others.

The new goals that the Seeker is forming are coming out of the previous cycle of their life – they are at a point where their life is coming together on all levels. They need to take the time to enjoy being “whole”, they need to enjoy their sense of “victory”, before they move on to the next level. The goals that percolate during their time of celebration will be the ones they take into the next cycle of their life.

The new goals are taking the Seeker into the land of opportunity, into a time of success, prosperity and abundance in the physical world, but also into a sense of balance between their physical and spiritual worlds.

I would love to see comments on this interpretation – to see how others interpret this spread!  

Scans were taken from the “Deviant Moon Tarot”, Patrick Valenza, U.S. Games Systems., Inc, 2008.

© January 2012 Bonnie Cehovet