I have become a little haphazard in the order that I draw these cards. I just hop around the deck randomly picking the next card based on my moods.
We are now at the Wheel of Fortune.
For reference, I used the 1870 Jeu de l’Oracle des Dames card 20. I didn’t like the monkey king in cape and sword situations.
Lady Fortuna, as shown in the illustration, is a combination of Haudenosaunee traditional native patterns and Greco-Roman styles. (Update: I digitally corrected her left sleeve to make it less wacky.
Each card entry is written from scratch using the Lemarchand-Orsini texts in French. I then translate those texts into English and use them as a reference when I write my card entry. The guidebook is keyed for my illustrations but I also want it to work as an independent book about Etteilla decks.
For example, my illustration for the Wheel of Fortune does not feature the monkey with the crown and sword. However, I talk about the significance of the feature in the guidebook and show the Etteilla editions which have it.
There’s also the LWB. If you are interested in deep diving into the Etteilla system, you can add on the big guidebook. The little booklet in white that came with the deck should be sufficient.
I completed Card 20, Wheel of Fortune. Then, I moved on to the Three of Cups. Why? Because I can. Sorry to say, there’s nothing more. The Three of Cups was followed by the Three of Wands.
Here are my final drafts. Both have full moons, which is funny. It’s used in the Three of Cups to symbolize the card’s theme. It’s in the Three of Wands to commemorate the day I completed that illustration – it just so happened that it was on the eve of the full moon. =P
Above is a screenshot from the guidebook that includes my original sketch for Venice. Studying renowned illustrations and art has been a great pleasure. You can essentially copy the masters’ work. You can improve your skills by copying the master’s work. Studying has really helped me take my drawing to the next stage. For example, this illustration of Venice is a study of a Liber Chronicarum (1493) illustration.
This is just one example of the layout used for card entries. It is useful to see the Etteilla II side-by-side compared with my version. Images from other Etteillas can be found in many entries. Because I have the highest-resolution images of the Lismon Etteilla II, the featured version is the Lismon Etteilla II.
I am currently working on the Four of Wands. The two left-most pictures are Etteilla I. Next, Etteilla II is in the middle. Etteilla III is at the right.
Below are a few of the versions of my Four of Wands work in progress. I’m still trying to find the right solution.
This is an analysis of The Accolade (1901), by Edmund Blair Leighton. According to the Orsini card meanings “Accolade”, is one of the listed keywords for Card32. It was drawn using the grid system, so it isn’t exactly freehand. Pro artists claim that cheating is the use of the grid system. It probably is. =)
It’s been a great way to improve my freehand skills, even though I am still learning. After drawing with the grid system for a few times, you can then start drawing freehand. Your freehand sketches will suddenly become more professional.
For those not familiar, “grid system” refers to a technique that involves drawing a Cartesian grid on the work of art you want to duplicate, and then reproducing the same proportion on blank canvas. Take a look at each cell of the grid, and then copy it onto your blank cell.
My current work is on the blank area in the lower third, which is just grid paper. How will I reverse the illustration given the way I placed the knight? It’s a mystery.
For the upright illustration, I prefer the one in the left with the sun prominently placed, for symbolism, to the other in the left. The more distant city line is what you see in my above left.
There’s the cliffhanger. =) Keep checking back for the next update about the Four of Wands. =)