Review by Solandia
This is the third year of the independent Tarot Loversí Calendar, which is organised and printed entirely by Major Tom Schick. Previous yearsí have been a combination monthly calendar and source of articles and text information, but this yearís has been refined and the focus is on just the Tarot cards and spreads.
The main feature of the 2005 calendar is, of course, the Tarot cards. They're from twelve unusual and independent Tarot decks - some unpublished or incomplete - and most with an animal theme. The decks include:
Chat du Marseille
Tarot of the Lepidopteran People
Baroque Bohemian Catsí Tarot
Spirit Vision Tarot
Tarot of the Midnight Masquerade
Catís Eye Tarot
Major Tomís Tarot of Marseilles
The front of the calendar features a Lovers card from each deck, and inside one of these decks is featured each month. One or two cards (not including the Lovers cards) are printed in full colour on a dark background, above a short descriptive blurb and the artistís contact details.
The day grid for each month is sharply divided by black lines. This year, due to the calendarís portrait orientation, the grid has more white space and room to write appointments or birthdays, while still featuring the vast array of religious holidays and festivals that I liked from previous calendars. (As before, Tom makes a distinction between season-specific holidays, such as the Pagan festival of Yule, marking both Southern and Northern Hemisphere dates.)
An original spread is printed for each month with an explanation of its use, numbered card positions and a layout graphic. There are twelve spreads for the year, and an extra thirteenth spread on the back of the calendar - the Special Birthday Wheel Tarot Spread. Some of the contributed spreads are original in both senses of the word, like the Gopher spread, whose ďmedicine is about being prepared, being connected and digging through to the root of a situation and uncovering deep mysteriesĒ, or Saving the Fool spread, designed for the Ship of Fools Tarot and which the author finds brilliant for oddball advice. I also liked the whimsical practicality of the Bathtub Spread, which has positions for the tub, hot water, cold water, even the rubber ducky Ė and gives advice on a task or job ahead.
The Tarot Loversí Calendar gets better each year in both practicality and aesthetics. The 2005 edition is functional, and has images of a size that can be seen from a roomís distance as well as enjoyed up close. I know mine will be hanging on my wall all year.
A percentage of profits from the sale of the Tarot Loversí Calendar will be donated to Aeclectic.
Kate Hill (also known as Solandia) is the founder and editor of Aeclectic Tarot, and has reviewed more than 200 decks over the years.