MY STORY

Every time I heard or read something about Tarot cards, a spark of excitements and interest would ignite within me. If it happened today, I would have known that it comes from those whom I later come to know very well as the “Queen of Cups” alongside the “Queen of Swords” and their energy, who were very excited about the subject of Tarot. Behind my interest in Tarot cards, there is an additional story that is a bit long, which I may tell some other time. In those days, for some reason, it seemed to me that my world and the Tarot world will never meet.

Eventually, what came to pass is what occurs every time a critical mass of material related to a certain subject is formed. The mass begins to grow and take shape, and the subject represented by the mass begins to repeatedly appear in our minds and take an increasing amount of our attention. Until one day, we discover that we’ve been overly busy with that subject for a long time.
Fate or coincidence led me to King George Street in Tel Aviv, where I discovered two shops, which also sold Tarot cards. I would stand hours in front of the display windows and stare at the multitude of decks showcased in them, trying to decide which one of the many decks will be my first. At some point, it seemed like one of the decks speaks to me more than the rest. I remember taking a seat in a small park on King George Street, staring with shining eyes on the deck which I bought just a few minutes ago. The pack was green, and the letter proclaimed: “Tarot of the Old Path.” I was 18 years old, and I knew it was the beginning of a true love story. Initially, I tried to master the art of reading Tarot card on my own; I purchased some books, to read and study. But after a while, I still felt that something was amiss. Fortunately, I met with a card reader who instructed small groups of people, who did an excellent job. Thus, I found myself, a young man, every Friday afternoon, spending time with 4 women much older than me studying Tarot cards.

The need to create my own deck had awakened in me for the first time in 1994 when I was 22 years old. It came from the place which wanted to feel closer to the cards. I was certain that I would create cards that will fit me better than any existing deck. Although I never learned to draw, in my most distant memories drawing was an inseparable part of me, so it was completely natural for me to try and create my own personal cards.
I began working on the cards with all my power, but very quickly I stumbled upon obstacles that made it very difficult for me. One of the problems was the drawing technique; I had no problem illustrating the cards with pencil, but I had no experience with colors. I tried several methods, and it took me a lot of time. When I perfected the technique which I invented, I realized that for every single card I will have to put at least one week of work, maybe more. One must also take in mind that there were many delays and obstacles as well as cards that did not pass my own criticism, and thus it took me a whole 3 months to create only 9 cards. Disappointed by my own limited drawing ability and my poor output, I was nevertheless very much satisfied by the cards that I created. They transmitted something unique and powerful which I can feel to this day, when I sometimes get caught up in the sense of nostalgia and shut myself up in the study room, looking at the 9 cards which I managed to create in 1994. As time passed, the need to create a Tarot deck gradually faded and my interest in Tarot cards were altogether neglected. My life led me to other things unrelated to Tarot, or so I thought at the time.
But looking back I can say without a shred of doubt that this period and the subject that I was interested in, provided me many answers that are directly related to Tarot cards. Thus, in 2005, equipped with new understandings, I began my second attempt. This time completely abandoning hand drawing for digital drawing, I thought I would overcome all obstacles with my Macintosh computer. So I thought, but unfortunately, my new insights and the Macintosh computer could not help me overcome my own destructive self-criticism. I could not make peace with the result and did not like what I was able to create. End of the second attempt.

True, I learned not to underestimate the powerful enemy of destructive self-criticism that I discovered in my second attempt, but the need to create my own deck dared to raise its head for the third time in 2006. This time, the emphasis was on drawing, unlike the second attempt which was more graphic. Equipped with a Mac and a graphic board that would help me draw the characters, I began my third attempt. The time and effort were not in my favor this time; because I wanted to feel completely at peace with my work, I did not allow myself to skip the smallest thing that seemed problematic to me. I went back, fixed changed and erased every detail until I could say I was satisfied. I was confident with my work but found out that to finished a single card that way, I had to work many hours a day, for a whole month. A quick calculation revealed that even without any interruptions it would take me 6 years to finish a whole deck at this rate. Tired and disappointed, I gave up for the third time, and this time it was clear that it would be the last time. I cannot say that my urge to create a Tarot deck faded after the third attempt, but I was suppressing it, rejecting it, laughing at it… Until 2015 came…

04/15/2016
“Hello, everyone, my name is Simon, and I am in the midst of creating a Tarot deck. This is my fourth attempt, and this time I’m hoping I’ll be able to complete it. The way is still long, but I’m glad to say that I’m in a good place in the middle. So far, it has been 8 months of hard work of sketching, drawing, and thinking. I am pleased to host you here, and who knows, maybe sometime later, when you see the whole deck, you will say that it was worth trying again and again since 1994.”

Simon Winebrand