Since its publication in 2011 The Shadowscapes Tarot has enjoyed a growing reputation among tarot students for being a deck with many outstanding qualities.
The main reason why this deck is so quite loved, and even revered, is mainly due to the exquisite artwork featured in the cards by its author fantasy artist Stephanie Pui-Mun Law.
Skilfully crafted, the deck features a blend of fairy tales, myth, and folklore drawn from several world cultures all of which are woven into the Rider-Waite format.
So popular has the deck become that it has spawned a number of variants and related products.
From Pen to Paper
The most recent Shadowscapes product from Stephanie Pui-Mun Law is The Art of Shadowscapes Tarot.
This large format publication features the preliminary artwork that was created during the six years that it took the author to bring her ideas to fruition.
In her book Pui Mun Law includes each card of the major arcana cards with each one spread over two pages.
The first page includes personal commentary on the specific card’s meaning as well as some background information related to the cards symbolic content.
On the facing page (in most cases) is a full-sized reproduction of the finished card as it appeared in its original form as a watercolour but without its title as it appears in the final tarot deck.
A mixture of penned draft sketches and near completed standalone figures create a sketchbook of ideas that reveal the creative evolution of a deck that is enjoyed throughout the world
One of the main criticism there has been of The Shadowscapes Tarot Deck — even by its most committed users, is the fact that its artwork is so complex and intricate that the traditional Tarot format fails to do the imagery justice.
The author has responded to this with this publication and fans of the deck will be delighted that they are at last offered the opportunity to appreciate the stunning artwork in its full glory.
Purchasers should be aware though that only the major arcana cards have been featured in this publication which, I am quite sure will disappoint some.
Nevertheless this really is a first-class and superbly crafted book which does the artists amazing artwork a great justice. It is also fascinating to get a glimpse into the artist’s creative process and to be able to follow the designs through their various stages of incarnation.
Put simply, if you have the Shadowscapes deck and admire Stephanie Put-Mun Law’s artwork then this delightful and impressive book is one that you will want to add to your library.