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Knight of Cups
by danubhe

Card Meaning
Artistic Media
Artist's Bio


A golden form on horseback strives towards a Holy Grail, which elusively floats before him. He rides before a misty landscape, galloping over rivulets of gold; he is vague in form but liquidly intense, as is the fluid contained by the Grail. Above him, a God watches as the Sun.


As one can see from the kinship between the rider and the fluid the Cup holds, what the Knight pursues is actually himself - he pursues a part of his own soul. The horse represents his animal side; the Sun, his Higher Self. The misty landscape is his journey through life. The birds are his thoughts, winging through his mind. In the border, Celtic swirls in blue represent the element of Water, as does the ground beneath him - is this solid ground, or is it waves he rides over?

Card Meaning

This card is about a hopeless romantic; he is ever in pursuit of an ideal, of what is just out of his reach. He will continue to strive when others give up; to him, failure is only an excuse to start over. His ideals may sometimes get in the way of his judgement. The qualities of this card may be in the querent or someone around the querent.

Reversed, this is someone who believes in his or her own rightness at the expense of good sense and of the rights of others to their own opinions and principles. He may be infatuated with power, or a narcissist, only interested in himself - forever pursuing his own Self without seeing the higher significance of the Quest.

Artistic Media

My usual medium is oil paint; however, mixed-media runs it a close second. This was created using first an ink drawing on transparent vellum; the horse was then filled with gold ink, and the rider covered in holographic film. The ground is decorative paper; the rest is ink-drawing. I had an old photograph of the so-called "Gorgon" head at Bath, which I enhanced and then traced in gold ink. I used an iridescent pigment for the sky. The background is on another sheet of vellum, with the foreground superimposed over it to give a 3-dimensional effect.

After being scanned, I added the birds in PaintShop Pro, then added the border and the text. (The borders are from public-domain for the Celtic swirls.)

My inspiration was Celtic votive statuary; this blends into a Pagan theme, for me, of pursuing the Grail, or Cauldron, of Plenty.

Artist's Bio

Mary Terhune lives in Sayre, PA. She has been reading the Tarot since the age of 12. She recently discovered Aeclectic Tarot, and has become a much more serious reader than ever before. She initiated as a Wiccan at 14; she came to the conclusion about 4 years ago that in truth, she is Druidic.

She was born in Syracuse, NY in 1966; she had excellent high-school art teachers. From there, she went on to art school, a tiny one called Swain School of Design in New Bedford, MA. It's now part of the greater U-Mass Dartmouth. She has been drawing since she could scribble, and continues to build my portfolio with the aim of being in a major gallery; right now, she has work at a local gallery. She is also entering the online registry/gallery of VSArts (Very Special Arts), an organization for artists with disabilities; they are international and give plenty of exposure.

At the age of 30, she was diagnosed bi-polar and is disabled. However, she has had a great deal of inspiration from her visions, resulting in work of which she is proud. She is planning a full deckbased on Celtic artifacts; she also has a beautiful photo-montage deck which will be a free download on her eventual website. She hopes that this card (and the others to follow) is as inspirational as she intends it to be. Go back to the project index, read the traditional card meaning, or get a free tarot reading with this deck.

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I created Aeclectic in 1996 to share my passion for Tarot with the world, and I've added 1500 decks over the years. Read more about me, contact me or connect in the forum.

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