Sunday, December 20, 2015

TINKER'S DAMN TAROT Jumbo-Sized Majors Deck is Here --- and it's Spectacular!

A Working Occult Deck from an Eccentric Edwardian Mystic!

Jumbo-Sized MAJOR ARCANA Available Now - Limited Time


Little remembered today, AUGUSTUS FREIDERICH NORWOOD (b. July 16, 1897) was a scientist, inventor and occult researcher whose ground-breaking efforts to find the connection between hard science and the supernatural were dismissed by his contemporaries. As a dabbler in every aspect of the unknown, he created several tarot and oracle decks; TINKER'S DAMN TAROT is a faithful reproduction of his unique take on Tarot. When in 1934 he was jilted by his then-fiancee Liana Quigley (pictured as the Mayoress of Air in this deck), Norwood retreated even further from society and began to focus his efforts on bridging the gap between the worlds of the living and the dead. His final invention, the Immortalis Telegraphica, is said to have been a complete success, though it was destroyed in a fire shortly after its creation. On the night of September 24, 1936, Augustus Norwood walked out of his workshop and was never seen again.

The Deck will be available in both Standard and Large-sized Editions,
with your choice of several backs @ no extra charge.

Jumbo-Sized MAJOR ARCANA Available Now - Limited Time

Tinker's Damn Tarot & Lenormand ™ and © Duck Soup Productions, 2015.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Tinker's Damn Lenormand is Now Available!

Available in Standard and Expended Versions
(or, visit the PRODUCT PAGE to see all the cards)

Monday, September 7, 2015

Nearly There....

It's done. It's at the printers. Now it's just a matter of waiting for the printed proof to come in, making any final changes as needed, and then it will be time to let 'er rip. As you can see from the above card (which is the second alternate for "The Lady") some of the names and concepts changed in the final cards from what I previously announced below. Eh, it happens.
All of the cards and card backs are now posted on the product page, which you can access from the menu on the left. Tentative price for the Standard 36-card edition is $29.99; tentative price for the Expended 54-card edition is $34.99.

Are we done here? NFW!!! Tomorrow I resume work on the SECOND "Mystery Deck" project, Mme. Loviise's Scorned Oracle. Stay tuned, we're only just getting started. And don't forget to check out the full line of available decks at . Thanks for following me in my Tinker's journey!

-- Frede.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Additional Cards in Progress

Although I'm not far along in making them, and have been spinning my wheels a lot this week, I can at least tell you what all of the additional/alternate cards in the expanded deck are going to be. 

I know that some of you don't want additional cards: that's why the deck will be available in a Standard version. Beyond that -- the production costs are the same if I do a 37-card deck or a 54-card deck. So I might as well do a 54-card deck that allows the people who do want extra cards to get their money's worth. 

Either way, whether you don't want extra cards or whether you do, don't come crying to me that this deck doesn't meet your needs. Because what is it I won't give? That's right: I won't give a Tinker's Damn.

#0: (Pictured above) INVENTION
There will also be a BLANK card, a DOUBLE-BACKED card, and a PROMO card.

TWO alternates for "The Lady" -- The Sorceress and The Librarian.
TWO alternates for "The Gentleman" -- The Tinker and The Apothecary.
TWO alternates for "The Child" -- The Prodigy and L'infant Terrible.
ONE alternate for "The Dog" -- Cat.

Finally, there will be a LEGEND card. Those of you who buy Newman's Own products know that each one carries a "Legend" on the package: a cute and amusing story behind the product. I can't promise that the story behind Tinker's Damn Lenormand will be cute or amusing, but I can promise that it will come with a story.

And that's all for today, Fellow Travelers!

-- Frede.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

The Heart of It

It suited my mood to work on these two cards today. It may seem somber, but then from the very beginning I have considered "Tinker's Damn Lenormand" to be an Elegiac deck -- although most people won't see all the points of connection. And that's the way it should be. 

"The Cat" is of course an extra card that will be included only with the Expanded version of the deck. It's an alternative to, and shares the same numbering as, No. 18 "The Dog." This has been one of my criticisms of the Lenormand system right from the start: not being a Dog person myself, I have always thought it grossly unfair that Lenormand decks have dogs but not cats. Now CAT PEOPLE can have a deck that reflects them.
So here is the last card of the deck. I have only the alternate cards to create now (and even some of those are done). I'm planning on about 12 extra cards, of which (by popular request) one will be blank and one will be double-backed. There will be two extra gentlemen, two extra ladies, and one extra child. There will be a card number zero, and cards 37 and 38, each with a new image and meaning. There will be a "Legend" card with a fanciful story behind the deck that I haven't made up yet. 

I do have the card back still to come, too... that has been troubling me for a while now. No doubt there will be alternate backs to choose from.  -- Crap, I'm further away from finishing this than I thought.

-- Frede.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

This is my collection of skeleton keys. I wear them 'round my neck most every day!

Click to enlarge.

These are examples of the alternate cards that will appear with the Expanded Edition of the deck. The card that was previously revealed on this site as "The Gentleman" has now been renamed "The Apothecary," although it retains the same numbering and card orientation as The Gentleman. It's now an alternate, as is "The Sorceress" above, which is an alternate for "The Lady."

-- Frede.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Lillies in the Moonlight

I have decided to make TINKER'S DAMN LENORMAND available in two versions: the first being a regular 36-card Lenormand for them what want a plain ol' Lenny with no frills, and the second being a deluxe version with between 10-14 additional cards, including alternate Gentleman, Lady and Child cards plus a few more surprises. Both decks will have alternate backs you can choose from at no extra charge (with more specialized customization features available for an extra fee).

So, I really wanted to get this project completed this weekend, but with all that extra work I just decided to add on, it looks like that's not going to happen....
Although the window it is sitting in is not real, the cow-jumping-over-the-moon is a real hand-made toy that I inherited from my mother. I wish I knew the artist's name so that I could credit them. 


Friday, August 28, 2015

The Written Matter

Click the images to enlarge.

I started out doing something completely different for The Book, something more personal, but it didn't work out. Maybe next time. 

The letter is an actual letter from my late Grandmother Melvina, dated "Monday," circa 1984. The design didn't start to come together until I decided to use a mannequin hand to hold it.

-- Frede.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Choosing with the Heart

I never know when I start on a design whether or not the idea I have is going to work out. Sometimes it doesn't, and I have to scrap it entirely and start with a new idea. Other times, I have to go through all kinds of  contortions and revisions before I'm happy. Then again, sometimes I get more ideas during the process, and if I'm lucky, it all comes together. I think I got lucky on this one. 

You all know that Raggedy Ann has a Candy Heart, right? I mean, everyone knows that, right? 'Cuz if you don't, it's time you read some of the original Raggedy Ann books by Johnny Gruelle and got yourself some edjumacashkun.

It's the birds in flight that make this image. Without them, it just kind of sits there.


Wednesday, August 26, 2015

A Twining Card, A Twisted Card

First, the "twining" card...
Next, the "twisted" card:

So many Lenormand decks are doggedly literal. Too literal for my taste. On the dog card, a picture of a dog. On the ring card, a picture of a ring. On the mountains card, a picture of a mountain. 

It's frankly boring to me. Lenormand readers may prefer the simple approach, but as a designer I'm constantly looking for ways to do things differently, if for no other reason than to keep myself from dying of boredom. I think that's evident throughout Tinker's Damn Lenormand, but nowhere is it more evident than on this card -- which is considerably toned down from my first idea.

Because my first thought was to find a piece of '50s pin-up art with the model fully reclined, so to speak, and to plaster her Figurative Mountains all over the card! ("Figurative!" -- I do love a double entendre that actually works both ways!)

I knew that idea wasn't going to fly with a lot of potential customers. So I compromised and gave the literalists their mountain range -- meanwhile applying my '50s pin-up girl onto the side of a caravan. The result is just a little bit wicked... the kind of wicked I like best.

Well... I didn't make it up. Any Monty Python fans out there are likely to remember Michael Palin's narration over footage of a certain mountain range: "The Grrrrrand Tetons! The Mountains with the biggest _____ in the world!"

-- Frede.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

A Tale of Two Trees

I TOLD you that I didn't like the Tree card that I had.
So I turned it into the Stork

For years and years a flat wooden stork stood on a pole in the back yard of the old place where I used to live. It was right outside my bedroom window. None of that exists anymore, not the stork nor the pole, nor even the trees. So this is a digital recreation.

Here are the rest of the cards that I've completed so far. you can click to enlarge the small ones.

I quite like the fish.
This was designed to be a Completely Personal deck, and so everything you see has
emotional significance for me. I don't expect anyone else to "get" it, 
but I hope y'all like the designs just the same.

-- Frede.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

A Walk Through Time

All of the TINKER'S DAMN card designs are more or less powerfully
personal to me for reasons that I'd prefer not to discuss.

Click the small images to enlarge.

-- Frede.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Leaves from The Tinker's Damn

No. 11 is the latest card design. Actually, I have only 12 cards left to build.

I may redesign #5, The Tree. It looks almost normal compared to the cards around it, and we certainly can't have that. What do you think? (click on any of the small images to enlarge)

These were two of the earliest designs I did.
All the photography is mine, such as it is.
So, with the Coffin, Snake, Whip and Scythe, you are seeing pretty much all of the
Really Demented cards in the deck. I think after the sweetness of The Brownies I
needed something bitter to cleanse my palate.

More to Come.

-- Frede.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

First Release from THE MYSTERY DECKS Coming in September!

The first release from THE MYSTERY DECKS is TINKER'S DAMN LENORMAND. I'm aiming for a late September publication. Combining new photography with Found Objects and cast from a deeply eccentric mold, TINKER'S DAMN LENORMAND is a Lenormand Deck with an Attitude Problem, trapped between vintage and contemporary eras. If it looks like the work of a madman... well, it is, and that's the look I'm aiming for. 

THE MYSTERY DECKS are just one cog in the TAROT BY DUCK SOUP machine. If you haven't yet visited the main tarot site, I am sure you will find it illuminating. Meanwhile, the even bigger machine of Duck Soup Productions hosts a demented blog, and links to my work in other genres. Go there if you are in the mood for More Punishment.

As with my other tarot and oracle sites, this page will see regular updates until all of the cards have been created. Stay attuned!

Until the next update, here are some initial card designs to tide you over. Click on any of the images to see them at a larger size.

Adieu for now ---

-- Frede.