“A tall man looks from a battlemented roof over sea and shore; he holds a globe in his right hand, while a staff in his left rests on the battlement; another is fixed in a ring. The Rose and Cross and Lily should be noticed on the left side. Divinatory Meanings: Between the alternative readings there is no marriage possible; on the one hand, riches, fortune, magnificence; on the other, physical suffering, disease, chagrin, sadness, mortification. The design gives one suggestion; here is a lord overlooking his dominion and alternately contemplating a globe; it looks like the malady, the mortification, the sadness of Alexander amidst the grandeur of this world’s wealth. Reversed: Surprise, wonder, enchantment, emotion, trouble, fear.”
This is the Two of Wands card in the Rider-Waite Tarot deck. Text by Arthur Edward Waite, co-creator of the deck and author of the corresponding Key to the Tarot. Illustrated by Pamela Colman Smith. First published in 1909 and still in print. Some say the 29 year old Alexander was depressed at the thought of no world left to conquer. This is tempered by the fact that while his empire reached to India in the west, he left the headwaters of the Indus River unconquered. (Perhaps this is the river he is looking across?)
I think every writer has visions of how they would like their works illustrated. Out here on the web, we make do with pulling together clipart and images and stuff them into our webpages. My magazine articles get illustrated with my photographs and sometimes a graphic artist I do not communicate with. But to have an illustrator working next to us is indeed a dream. While Alice in Wonderland is a highlight in book illustration, I think, too, that Tarot decks are also incredibly compelling, even if not part of a true book.
I’ve had some some luck getting illustrations done at Fiver (external link) for my Delaplane book proposal (internal link). People tell me that Upwork’s (external link) artists offer better quality, even if the prices are higher. For now, I am back to dreaming.