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Drawing on a decade of experience in social work, Taylor has written and illustrated a thorough guide to practicing self care in a stressful world. Learn to recognize signs of burnout and add some critical tools to your personal development toolbox with 78 illustrated cards to guide you. Each deck includes a 96 page book that is filled with strategies for maintaining mental health and achieving balance in your life.
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Welcome to the Kickstarter campaign for my new project, The Fox Universe Tarot: A Self Care Oracle. Last year I successfully funded my first deck, The Fox Tarot, and I’m really hoping we can do it again! The Fox Universe Tarot is bigger and better and I’m super excited to share it with everybody.
First, a little about me. My name is Taylor and I’m an artist and designer living in the gulf islands of British Columbia. I have spent the majority of my adult years as a front line mental health worker in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside and on Vancouver Island working in low income housing serving meals, providing health and home support, and starting art programs in the community. Over the years I have collected a lot of experience in mental health through this work as well as through my own personal struggle with GAD (generalized anxiety disorder).
Late in 2016 the opioid crisis hit us hard and working became considerably more challenging and chaotic for front line workers and other emergency response personnel. For me, personally, things became especially difficult as my own mental health was drastically impacted by the traumas I was experiencing in the workplace. I continued to power through because I felt the work was important, but by the spring of 2017 I was in way over my head and suffering a mental breakdown that made it impossible for me to function on shift. I found out the hard way that self care, particularly for those in the social work field, is essential and putting yourself on the back burner for too long can be really detrimental to your health.
In the end I was forced to accept that I could no longer continue with my career and would have to step back and begin the process of healing myself. At the height of my anxiety about how I was going to navigate this major change in my life as well as continue to financially support my household I was very surprised to discover I was pregnant.
It has been difficult to accept that sometimes things happen in life that you cannot control. I have given up a career I cared deeply about because my own mental health made it impossible to continue, and in a unexpected twist have now stepped into a new role as mother to a beautiful little girl. A true burn-it-all-to-the-ground Tower transformation!
It has been an intense journey, and it’s not over. I’ve had to be creative in plotting my next steps, and that’s what brings me to The Fox Universe Tarot. This deck has become a real passion project for me and I love that I have been able to create something that reflects the things I have learned through this difficult period. Self care is critical in this busy world and far too many people, myself included, don’t give it enough thought. This deck aims to raise awareness of the importance of truly caring for yourself properly.
About the project:
The artwork style for this deck is a lot more complex and detailed than the art in The Fox Tarot. I wanted the illustrations to be an ode to life; you may find yourself in a place where you think you don’t want to be alive anymore because it’s really hard to see the beauty in the world and I wanted the artwork to be your reminder.
When I was in art school many years ago we gave a final presentation of our photography work first year. One of my classmates began speaking about how he didn’t have any inspiration for his final concept and had a hard time finding anything he wanted to photograph. He told his father and his Dad’s response, spoken in a serious “dad” tone, was “Maybe you need to look a little closer, son.” We all had a laugh, and he then shared his stunning collection of macro shots (extreme close ups) of tiny little berries, tufts of moss, and insects. I still remember those words today and thought it would work well to feature detailed line drawings of flowers, leaves, mushrooms, and insects onto the cards. The hard part was choosing from all the amazing life taking place around us. Part of my recovery has been to take regular forest walks and I have found a lot of inspiration there.
The deck itself is based on the traditional tarot framework of 78 cards: 22 Major Arcana + 56 Minor Arcana. Each of the 4 Minor Arcana suits contains 14 cards (10 pips and 4 Court cards). For The Fox Universe Tarot I have renamed all the cards and suits to fit with my self care concept. The four suits are Wheels (Personal Development), Spoons (Energy), Candles (Burnout), and Diamonds (Recovery). The Court cards are named Student, Ghost, Witch, and Wizard. The 22 Major Arcana guides are also renamed and have new meanings. It is similar to an oracle deck in that it provides the user with 78 words to reflect on. All of these details and the meanings of every card are thoroughly explained in the guidebook included in each deck.
The deck will be 78 black and white cards on sturdy card stock with rounded corners, packaged with the 96 page guidebook in a sturdy 2 piece box. For those who have seen The Fox Tarot, the card stock, dimensions and guidebook size are the same but the box is a higher quality.
Thank you so much for your interest in this project, I’m really looking forward to sharing it with everyone.