Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Cringe-Worthy Preparation of Mystical Cats Tarot Cover Art

As I finish up the art for Mystical Cats Tarot, the talented folks in the Llewellyn Art Department are working on starting their end of the process.

I got an email from the art director from Llewellyn shortly before my move to let me know that while I'm still finishing up the art for Mystical Cats Tarot, they would like the two cards that the committee chose for the cover art for the box and accompanying book for this deck.  They want to get started on the design for the packaging, and since I worked for several years as a designer for print, I totally was happy to get them whatever they needed.  I love to work on heavy illustration board, it's about a thick as a mat board if you've ever seen that.  Llewellyn prefers to scan the art themselves from the originals, and since they use a drum scanner which is curved, they prefer it if I peel the art from the illustration board that I prefer to work on. I know about drum scanners because we used to used them back when I worked at Network Color, they scanned the original art from the comic book pages so that we could digitally add color.   It's like a big thick tube that the art kind of wraps around as it scans.

Peeling the boards is a slightly daunting process, more so for my husband who hates to watch me do this, even though I've never torn one yet.(knocking very vigorously on the old wooden art table)

I went though and located the two pieces they are using for the covers, the orange cat, King of Earth will be the cover for the book Lunaea Weatherstone is writing and the grey cat in the tree, the Stars card will be the cover of the box, so watch for that on bookstore shelves this coming spring!
Everyone must thank my husband Dan, he photographed the peeling process for me, and it really makes him freaked out to watch it, he's so scared the art will get torn, so hats off to Dan for cringing while photographing!  FYI, I do 600 DPI scans of the art before I peel the boards..just in case.  Yikes!

So first I find a sweet spot with my fingernail where I can separate the thick board from the finished surface.

Then as carefully as I possibly can, and being careful not to bend the art at all, I peel the art from the board...oh Dan is totally loosing it now, he says it's very hard to watch.

Ta-da!! Now the art is peeled.  Instead of being on a thick piece of board, it's now more like a heavy piece of cardstock, exactly what Llewellyn needs to put through the curved drum scanner.

Ok, the second one gave me a bit of trouble, so Dan had to help hold it, but it turned out fine, here's the pic! (Poor guy, the things we do for love!)

Here they are, all ready to send off via FedEx.  At this writing, Llewellyn probably has the scans back and are working on creating our cool cover art from these images!  I'm so excited to see what they come up with!

For more updates and news about Mystical Cats Tarot, be sure to pop over and "like" our Facebook Page!

Brightest Blessings!

Mickie Mueller


  1. I absolutely love the Star card with the cat in the tree and the lion in the stars, gorgeous! I can't wait for this deck to hit the shelves!

    FYI, I would be cringing too! Kudos to Dan for not flinching while capturing the peeling process!

  2. beautiful as always :D This cat reminds me of my own :D


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