Under the Roses Lenormand is an amazing deck created by, created by Kendra Hurteau and Katrina Hill. You can check out my review of the deck, here. Kendra was kind enough to let me ask a few questions about the deck, and her work. Check it out!
Shaheen: How did you discover Lenormand?
Kendra: I belong to a Tarot guild in the Metro Detroit area. One day, a day I will never forget, the book club host came in with a Lenormand deck. She laid out a Grand Tableau and it was love at first sight. I started looking for decks right away.
Shaheen: How did Under the Roses Lenormand begin?
Kendra: It actually began in the process of discovering the deck because when I looked for decks to work with I had the thought that I could create images I would want to work with. At the time, there weren’t the abundance there are now of Petit Lenormand decks. Several wonderful self-published decks are out there now but at the time I started with a gifted Piatnik and Melissa Hill’s self-published decks (the decks are still some of my favorites to this day). At that point I had formulated a couple of ideas for tarot decks and was actually writing one up. Ultimately, Lenormand won in the end though as I used it more and my fondness of it grew. Katrina Hill is my daughter and she is a graphic designer. I presented the concept of “Under the Roses” to her and she did a couple of concept images. We liked it so much that we created a schedule and started working on the images.
Shaheen: What challenges did you face in the creation?
Kendra: Seeing as it was our first deck, there were many. Initially, getting my imagination into her hands was the biggest hurdle. Eventually, we shared a common vision for the images and a work pattern that made us both happy. It was a balancing of both tradition and imagination the entire process. Because it is original art we wanted it to have a specific expression.
Shaheen: How would you describe the soul of the deck?
Kendra: The soul of the deck… Secrets.
Shaheen: Why did you decide to add keywords to your cards?
Kendra: The resurgence of Lenormand is bringing in a lot of beginners. I wanted the deck to be easily used by everyone. It was so taboo and, yet, I knew how much the novice would appreciate it. We knew it was likely we would issue an edition without them and we did. In the long run though, I know we did the right thing. Those decks were more in demand than the decks without the keywords. And while a few readers initially complained, we had an abundance of people that thanked us for doing just that. In the end, everyone was happy.
Shaheen: How has your vision of Lenormand changed since you created the deck?
Kendra: My vision has not changed much actually. I still read and share it in the same way. However, I have grown a much larger appreciation for the community of people who study and share it. My views are not always the same as others but the effort involved in bringing Lenormand back is a group effort and the people in the forefront have my respect.
Shaheen: I love the name of the deck can you tell us more about it?
Kendra: It suggests that you can find the secrets within and I felt that appropriate for card divination. To quote my own work… “Under the Roses” is a euphemism for buried secrets. The allusion comes from the Latin phrase “Sub Rosa” and dates back to classical Roman times when the rose became the symbol of confidentiality. The expression became well known in German literature eventually finding its way to English literature. Stories based around “Under the Rose” began showing up in the nineteen century and some of the later works were written about that time period.
Shaheen: You have announced that Under The Roses will be picked up by USG, So how does it feel to have your deck picked up by a major publisher?
Kendra: Amazing! The story of how they found us is neat. They actually discovered an old submission with four original concept images on it. Apparently, it had gotten lost in the crowd. They called asking to see more images, not knowing the deck was complete and self published. Once they saw the website things moved quickly.
And to be picked up by U.S. Games Systems, Inc? I still shake my head. They are my favorite publishing company. The artwork they put out is vibrant, the card stock is excellent, and as it turns out the people working there are wonderful. The deck is due out through them later this year.
Shaheen: You read both Tarot and Lenormand at the same time, why and how does this affect the reading?
Kendra: I don’t read them in the same spread, but side by side. They confirm each other and bring in a wealth of details. With the Lenormand so literal and the tarot so intuitive, I think it gives me two views of the same picture.
Shaheen: Where do you see divination and cartomancy going in the future?
Kendra: Cartomancy can and does truly touch lives. For me, the question is “How can we overcome the fear people have of card divination?” because, if the fear is overcome, the possibilities are endless. General public perceptions are changing (though many still see it as “bad”). It is quite possible that cartomancy could be used in professional atmospheres.
Shaheen: Is there anything about Lenormand that you find frustrating?
Kendra: Yes. I respect the traditional systems of Lenormand as much as others, however I see that new readers can’t jump in and pick a system when they don’t even know how to read the cards yet. It takes time to get to figure it out. And some never elect to use a particular system. I find no fault in that. People are diverse and I wouldn’t have it any other way. As long as they have selected keywords that work for them, the Lenormand will read accurately.
Shaheen: Does Under the Roses Lenormand address that issue?
Kendra: In a way. The keywords are selected from many of the main traditions used, plus many other words to challenge the way a person might look at the card. A traditionalist will likely find keywords they are accustomed to while a beginner will have a variety to choose from. This was intentional in creating the keywords. It actually took months to assemble so the issue could be addressed. Therefore, “Under the Roses Lenormand” does not follow one tradition but embodies them all.
Take a look at my new project… Kendra’s Vintage Petit Lenormand. http://kendrahurteau.wix.com/vintagepetitlen or find it on facebook. Thanks!
© Shaheen Miro 2013
Under the Roses Lenormand, created by Kendra Hurteau and Katrina Hill, is one of the most fascinating and captivating Lenromand decks I’ve found. As I search through the deck I am pulled into another world with a touch of Charles Dickens whimsy, mixed with gothic mystery and Victorian Romance. There’s a subtle hint of something epic happening beyond the faces of the pictures.
The distinct illustration style makes the deck feel alive and personal; these aren’t static images on cardstock! The portraits are illuminated and vibrating. You feel as if you could step into the images… they characters almost turn and speak. At times I think I can hear the deck whispering, “Step into our world and discovery your story.”
Under the Roses Lenormand is mostly gentle, always direct, with a slight shadow that hangs over every card. The dark side of the deck seems to cast an air of truth. My sense tingle with the invisible glances of looming figures that lurk in London alleys.
This deck is built for anyone who wishes to work with Lenormand, whether you are new or seasoned! Each fabulous illustration is accompanied by a list of keywords printed directly of the face of the image. This list is a mix of traditional and contemporary meanings that offer insightful suggestions. This adds another layer to the cards offering you the opportunity to use the card for creative prompts, such as writing, mind mapping and path working. Included are 4 extra cards that explain how to use the deck, including the Grand Tableau, and a unique spread called, “Under the Roses Spread”.
Not only are the images rich and vibrant, but the card stock is really great quality. The deck comes in a plastic protective case, and a velvet drawstring bag. But, this is the self published version of Under the Roses wish is no longer available! Under the Roses has been picked up by US Game Systems for publication later this year! Congratulations, ladies for an exciting opportunity!
The deck will soon be available to all you hungry cartomancy enthusiast!!
If you are looking for a Lenormand deck with presence… Under the Roses is for you! Every reading feels like you are getting closer to solving some epic mystery… if you figure it out let me know!
Next, we will have an interview with Kendra Hurteau, co-creator of Under the Roses Lenormand!!
© Shaheen Miro 2013
There is a constant stream of thoughts, words and ideas running through our head creating an inner dialogue. In order to tap into your intuition, you must learn to separate your inner voice, from the conglomerated chatter of the world around you (people, TV, radio, co-workers, past conversations). Take time for silence to allow your inner dialogue to unwind, and disentangle from the chaos. In silence you can hear the whispers of intuition, and eventually they will be loud and clear.
The future is fluid…a pulsing, ever changing thing. Nothing is set in stone. You have within your power the ability to manipulate energy, meaning you can influence the tides of what’s to come in your life. Instead of feeling helpless at the arms of fate, you can look the future fearlessly in the eye! The more conscious you are of your thoughts, feelings, and beliefs the more consciously you can manifest. With that being said there are things that you will need to experience, whether you like it or not! We all have a map to follow on our journey, you have a destination/lesson to learn, but the paths to that lesson are as numerous as the routes to Florida!
© Shaheen Miro 2013
Ooh you don’t want to miss this awesome interview with artist and creator of the soon-to-be printed deck, The Gypsy Palace! Nora takes us into the Gypsy Palace and let’s us peak behind the curtains into the heart and soul of her creation. Read this and fall in love… this absolutely speaks to the gypsy soul.
Shaheen: Nora, It’s so wonderful to connect with you and learn more about your enticing deck, The Gypsy Palace. How did this project begin?
Nora: Thanks Shaheen! This project was very well prepared, unconsciously – I had my pictures, I had the experience from Tarot reading, however, the spark was missing to combine them. As usually the good ideas do, the idea of the card deck was born unexpectedly, in the calmness after Christmas, when I visited my family in Hungary. I was open to start a big project including more than just my pictures, but my whole spirituality- and it came to my way!
Shaheen: Your art is beautifully vibrant and ethereal, what inspires you as an artist? Where did some of these images come from?
Nora: I am a lot inspired by folk art of the Balkan or ever further to the far East, India. I love tales, fables, which are spiced with magic to move your fantasy… I love to dream away with reading stories like children do, flying with borderless imagination. The colors of nature are always giving me new ideas to explore. For example now I discovered the color orange, inspired by the orange trees here, in Italy. I never saw orange trees before, have you? It amazes me how such a vibrant, energetic color can exist. Grab an orange and stare at it, let the color, smell and texture influence you. Gorgeous! And traveling, experiences, characters. I am a very sensitive, emotional person and I find my inspiration in myself by transforming my emotions to something higher- that gives me balance. The dynamics of the images is basically my inner dynamics.
Shaheen: What challenges did you experience with the creative process?
Nora: Well, the creation of these pictures needed me to feel together with every card and still to stay objective. Now I actually struggle to talk about it, because it was not a verbal action, it is hard to verbalize it… it needs you to find the right project for you and to go with the flow of it. And when I was out of it, what happens- that was a challenge to keep myself motivated to catch to flow again! As I am my arts and my art is me, basically, any artistic challenge is about working, growing in myself. It is never easy, when I have to face and break through a wall in myself.
Shaheen: How has your relationship with the Tarot changed since you created, The Gypsy Palace?
Nora: I can read for people from my own tarot deck, which is a very special feeling, as I know a lot about the pictures, the interpretations, how they were born and changed and now they are in a completely different situation… Fantastic. It somehow feels like raising your children and now letting them live their own life, without interrupting anymore. I am proud of them! But also, I think there will be a healthy short break with Tarot after the campaign, to let it calm down in me, a time when I am not just about The Gypsy Palace Tarot, but Nora again. It is a very intense period for me.
Shaheen: Do you have any exciting methods or exercises that are unique to reading with The Gypsy Palace Tarot?
Nora: I truly say that if magic happens, it happens anyways, doesn´t matter if you make up a strict ritual or just use them as it comes. And specially with my deck I wish freedom and flexibility in reading them! The images have a lot of movement, action on them- you can see this or that way around. Like the figure of the Three of Swords- is he pushing the heart away or is he pulling it into himself? I suggest to work, play with these dynamics. I used symbols that carry personal and universal meanings as well. The only method is to be open and creative.
Shaheen: What do you want people to feel and experience when they work with The Gypsy Palace?
Nora: The gypsy-fairy tale world holds a lot of secrets waiting to be found! The cards have a spirit, what I wanted to capture with the archetypical figures, intense colors and the whole design, the excellent quality. I wish that it makes people feel they hold something unique, something royal in their hands. The origin of them is pure and full with energy, I wish that working with them can connect magic, arts and the inner self in a beautiful celebration!
Shaheen: When your deck is printed, will you follow them with any other projects, a book perhaps?
Nora: Definitely! I rediscovered writing, I am trying my wings with it. I want to travel on with the cards, and collect more experiences, using them, reading them to people on my way. I keep the idea of the Gypsy Palace Tarot book on my mind and let in grow until I feel I am ready for that. I have a lot to tell about the images- as an appetizer I share one with You in a guest post…
Shaheen: Thank you, Nora. It’s been wonderful visiting The Gypsy Palace with you. This project is so inspiring. I think it will be a gem within the Tarot community.
Nora: Thank You, indeed for this opportunity! Your warm welcome on your blog makes me feel it is the right place to share more about myself and my project. Please don´t forget to support and spread the word, we can make The Gypsy Palace Tarot happen together!
Nora is an independent artist, and Tarot creator. Please support her independent effort to produce The Gypsy Palace Tarot deck. This will be a truly special deck for anyone who experiences it! Hurry, hurry, quickly! There is only one month left to make this deck a reality!! You can contribute to the cause, here!
And make sure you join The Gypsy Palace on FB!
Intuition is a compass to navigate through the dark and the light. Intuition links us in with the Universe so we can avert disaster, and sail smoothly to our dreams. Respect intuition, do NOT treat it like a parlor trick (not to say intuition isn’t fun!). I remind my clients that, “A reading is meant to help you consciously manifest the life you want”. Intuition helps you to see the road markers along the way.
© Shaheen Miro 2013
About a year ago I found a strangely lyrical place, filled with art, music and beauty called, The Wild Unknown. There I discovered these amazing art prints of a Tarot deck that artist Kim Krans had been working on. At the time the deck was just offered as art prints for framing, but not an actual deck!
To my surprise a few months ago venturing through random blogs I found, The Wild Unknown Tarot! Despite my urges I waited to click the “buy” button until I had a reason to reward myself.
When the deck finally came in the mail I was rabid, tearing at the package, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. Up until that point I had vicariously loved it through pictures, blog post, and reviews on the Internet. Now it was all mine!
The experience began with the box! I held it in my hand, looking at it from all angles. Touching the sturdy cardboard and looking at the fabulous pen and ink illustration that adorned the top. The black and white contrasted by the pops of vibrant watercolor was awe-inspiring.
I tugged at the black satin ribbon carefully placed to remove the lid with ease. Written in a scripted font on the inside of the lid,“Welcome to the Wild Unknown Tarot. You’ll find no wrongs or rights inside this box, only mirrors for reflection. Open your mind, draw a card, and have fun on your journey.”
The words tingled up my spine like a mysterious incantation to step into another world, The Wild Unknown…it felt like Wonderland had begun to seep into my veins. My eyes and fingers itched with anticipation to touch another world.
One by one I explored the cards, studying the delicate and bold inked images. I craved their meanings, I imagined their stories, and I roused them to life. This is no ordinary deck, nothing of the sort. This is a shamanic experience that completely pulls you into a different state of mind.
There are no people found in this deck, only animals, symbolic totems pulsing with life and energy. If you are brave enough to look into their determined eyes they will reveal parts of your soul.
Deer rules the Pentacles. Owls rule the Swords. Snakes rule the Wands. And, Swans rule the Cups. But there is a whole menagerie of different animals to greet you. Some of the cards are illustrated in the style of pips with only the suites emblem and some line work embellisments.
This deck is wild and free. It opens new doors, it blazes new trails, it becomes a key to uncharted territory. But walk with trepidation because this deck doesn’t take kindly to probing and prodding, you have to ask gently and listen. Humbly inquire, and leave your ego at the door. These cards give you answers without any non-sense.
Kim Krans style is very successful throughout the deck. Pops of color amongst black and white sing. Should you need a guide while exploring her new terrain, Krans included a hand written pamphlet guide. She has also written a full companion book for the deck (which I don’t have yet).
There isn’t much to complain about here. Each card is beautifully done. The cardstock is a nice weight, with an interesting, slightly frosted coating and the box offers lots of protection. I am interested to read the companion book because the pamphlet included doesn’t offer much explanation about the intent behind the illustrations, nor do the meanings deviate far from traditional associations…. which is a tad unexpected.
I suggest you seek out a copy of this deck ASAP! This is one indie effort that’s sure to become a collectors item. And if you get the book… let me know how it is!
© Shaheen Miro 2013
You will question your intuition. You will worry that it’s all in your head, that you’re imagining things. Stay focused, keep your breathing steady, and always remain objective. Your intuition and your imagination are sister experiences. They work hand in hand to bring you insights. Just because something is imaginative, doesn’t mean that it isn’t real. Imagination is symbolic language put into motion. Look at your impressions objectively. Read between the lines… that’s where wisdom lives.
©Shaheen Miro 2013
Using an oracle, or divinatory system is a fantastic way to tap into your intuition. Oracles give you shorthand for communicating with the Universe, it’s a built in language that you can study and learn. Divinatory tools have their faults, but they are a great jumping off point for you novice intuitiors. Find a divinatory system that feels right to you, but don’t get too caught up in the system because the most powerful messages usually happen “away from the table”!