These cards are the backdrop of many decks, and the foundation of many yet to come, because they're basically the legendary Rider Waite Smith deck with all the people removed.
I've been scanning in the original cards, digitally removing all the people, turning the image into black and white outlines, and drawing in the rest of the backgrounds where the people used to be.
Right now, I'm releasing these designs for free so that people can use them as templates to draw new art overtop of. For now, fourteen cards in the Major Arcana are available to download right here as a pdf and/or jpeg.
Source of above image of Girl with Skeleton is The Darkness Lives.
Find them on Instagram @thedarknesslives
This drawing exercise is an open call to all artists, asking them to produce their own art so that it can be placed on the RWS Major Arcana Tarot backgrounds.
How to participate:
1 Choose your favourite film star or fictional character and draw them. Make sure to include their whole body in the sketch. Use pencil, pen, charcoal, pastel, paint, or your tablet. If you use your tablet, use a canvas size of 2240 x 4000px.
This collection may be released online as a free colouring book, so don’t colour in your artwork. Stick to outlines and light shading. Use an accent colour if you like.
2 Place your drawing onto one of the background templates provided in order to finalize your submission.
Use the background images as a starting point. Customize them in any way you see fit or you can even draw your own background.
3 Post the drawing on your social media page.
4 Tag me so I can share your work.
5 Use the hashtag that has been set up for the project.
6 Tag a friend challenging them to do the same.
We'll be recreating the Major Arcana in the Rider Waite Smith Tarot deck, as well as the Kings and Queens of each suit. Reference the source material online to see what we're working with. FAQs are on the IG page, which is also packed with additional info.
I’ve been seeing so many different artists doing lots of interactive projects with their fan base, and as an artist myself, I also feel a responsibility to provide a tool for engagement and interaction. I’ve turned some of my other projects into colouring contests, and that’s what led to the idea of this Tarot drawing challenge. I hope you all have fun with it.
Happy drawing, and please feel free to DM anytime.
If you're using these as templates, please add to them, take elements away from them, modify and rearrange them, use shading and colour, develop depth, add animation. Make them your own. Or keep them exactly how they are. They're over 100 years old anyway. More coming soon.