Hello, magickal readers! Wherever, whenever this may reach you, I hope that you have an interest in Tarot. If you do, my guest today may entertain you. Her name is Sarah McMenomy and she is the artist and author of her first deck, The Entanglement Tarot, an unusual hex-shaped Tarot deck can be used to divine the future, get personal guidance, adorn an altar, create crystal grids, explore elemental and astrological associations. It can also be used in unique ways in spell craft to bind, banish, protect, and more!
Natalie Meraki (NM) – Sarah, I’d like to start with getting to know you as an artist before the deck was even a thing. What has been your artistic journey? What has inspired you? Which twists and turns have you taken? How did you arrive where you are presently?
Sarah McMenomy (SM) – I’ve always made art. My passion is illustration, and I’ve worked a lot with inks, watercolors, and acrylics. I got a degree in fine art, and worked as a freelance designer after college. The experience I got as a designer was fantastic, and I got to work with digital media, typography, book design, web design, and many other areas of design. My biggest inspiration throughout my art has been nature, but lately I’ve drawn a lot of inspiration from visionary experiences.
(NM) – How would you describe, and maybe what would you call, your current style?
(SM) – I think the name sounds a bit pretentious, but because it is inspired by dreams and visions, most of my art fits into the category of “visionary art.” There is a psychedelia influence, and I have a corvid nature that emerges in everything I make. I like shiny, shimmery, sparkly things… and rainbows.
(NM) – What was the deciding moment for you? The moment you decided, “I’m going to make a tarot deck!”?
(SM) – The concept for the deck came to me a few years ago, but it required some experimentation and development. At first I tried to make the cards square, but it just didn’t have the aesthetic I wanted. It didn’t come together until I landed on hexagonal cards with the flower of life pattern, but then I knew it would work and I would be able to draw it to have that sense of magical knotwork.
(NM) – What would you say was the most difficult aspect of deck creation for you?
(SM) – Finding the confidence to publish it. I’ve struggled with a religious upbringing, and it can cause anxiety around occult work. I have faith in the concept and craft that went into the deck, and in the results we achieved… but for me, there was a lot of anxiety wrapped up in producing such an unequivocally occult item to be available to the general public.
(NM) – What was the easiest/most enjoyable aspect of deck creation for you?
(SM) – The actual drawing. Development took years… fighting my inner emotional battles took awhile… writing the book took about a month. By the time I started drawing, I knew what was going to be on each card, and I knew how I was going to do it. So I got into a good flow while drawing; I think I averaged drawing two or three cards a day on my iPad Pro. And that’s always the most fun part for me, even when I spend a lot of time planning ? I like the act of creation.
(NM) – How did you get your deck out into the world?
(SM) – I partnered with Natalie Meraki of Laughing Cat Publishing to help me publish my deck ? I mean, you!! Since you’d already Kickstarted and published several well-received decks such as the Tarot Mood deck and the award-winning Young Witch Tarot deck, I felt very confident that you’d be able to make it happen. I’d also taken your workshop in self-publishing a deck, so I felt like I had a good idea of the process as a whole. But I didn’t feel confident to do my own fulfillment or publicize it enough, so I really needed your help. We ran a social media campaign on Facebook and Instagram to publicize the deck and then a successful Kickstarter campaign. Thanks to all our wonderful supporters, we got funded two times our goal, printed a first run of a thousand decks, and even made a stretch goal to add black edging to the deck!
(NM) – How does it feel to be making passive income on your artwork?
(SM) – I love it! Who doesn’t love passive income? Sometimes producing art can be a struggle, but passive income means you can still get paid even when you aren’t able to work. It’s a real blessing when you have chronic illness, and it’s amazing to make money doing something you really love.
(NM) – What advice do you have for others who’d like to do the same?
(SM) – Seek help if you need it. Don’t worry if you can’t do it all by yourself, because there are a lot of talented people who are eager to collaborate. When I started working on my deck, I made a Facebook group for deck creators to connect and share information about publishers, printers, reviewers, etc. Over time, many experienced creators joined the group, and it has become an invaluable resource which helped me throughout my deck creation journey. So my advice is: find (or make) a supportive community, and ask them questions!
(NM) – Where can readers find your beautiful deck for purchase?
(SM) – You can order The Entanglement Tarot deck and book, along with the stickers and pins that we created for the Kickstarter, at https://nataliemeraki.com/shop/ols/products/theentanglementtarot
About the Author:
Natalie Meraki is an artist, mawm, Weirdo, and lover of weirdos. She resides in Casper, Wyoming with her family. Natalie is the creator behind Tarot Mood, the CARTA award winning Young Witch Tarot and more! She is also the owner of Laughing Cat Publishing and Meraki Metaphysical. She calls her work Esoteric Edutainment (education and entertainment.) When not being weird for work, Natalie is being weird with her family. Then there’s the karaoke…