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HP Tarot - 18 The Moon

(2008) 5 1/2" x 10 1/2" Pencil on Paper. Processed and framed in Photoshop.

The Moon can be a double-edged card. Traditionally it shows a dog and a wolf howling at a waning moon that is weeping silver tears amid a dark landscape of standing stones, a branching path and a body of water that holds a crab scuttling about. All of that makes it probably one of the most mysterious-looking cards of the deck. Well-aspected the moon may mean that we are operating mostly on the intuitive plane: the crab in the water is what scurries about underneath the surface of our conscious mind, and while we follow our instinct we walk the paths of dreams with the certainty of a sleep-walker. The Moon encourages us to be open to hunches and to listen to our inner voice.

On the other hand, the Moon also holds a message of caution: The dark moonlit landscape may be the scene of nightmares, of drugged hallucinations, of illusions that guide us down the wrong paths where wolves are snapping at our heels and the guiding light of the moon wanes and fails. Looking under the surface of our consciousness may make us encounter our shadow rather than our inner guardian.

For my interpretation of the card I felt that some of the traditional symbols would serve very well: the wolf and dog were easy enough to keep – Sirius and Remus in their animal form as dog and werewolf sitting outside the shrieking shack. Of course for Remus to turn I had to replace the waning moon with a full moon. I also kept the water, though I did not show the traditional crab. I think the wolf and dog give the card a meaning that really emphasizes the double nature of the moon card. Remus’ transformation is involuntary, nightmarish, dangerous and a curse. It shows all the negative aspects of the moon card – the way our subconscious can overpower us with illusions and fear. Sirius’ transformation is voluntary, a feat of skill and magic and it is done for love and friendship. The marauders honed their skills of transformation so they could keep their friend Remus company and help him without endangering themselves. It shows that we can tap into our animal side for working good if we know how and if we do it for the right motivation and with proper skill.

Adding the shrieking shack was another opportunity to show that nightmares and illusions can turn out to be something else if we take a closer look. Everyone was always terrified of the “most haunted house in England” until the trio took a closer look and found it to be actually a safe place and a shelter for the marauders. I think the Moon card sometimes urges us to go below the surface of what scares us and to explore our beliefs and fears.

This card was a lot of fun to do and I am very happy how it turned out. I don't think I've ever been able to make moonlight on snow look quite so silvery...

Submitted to :iconfatgirlstock: for her tarot contest.
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© 2008 - 2021 Ellygator
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Ellygator's avatar
Johan73728's avatar
How very nice picture
Ellygator's avatar
Thank you! It was fun trying to make the moonlight on the snow work.
Johan73728's avatar
Glad to hear that:) im impressed with how you made the sky vivid
Ellygator's avatar
Thank you! It was a really nice card to draw, since the novel concepts aligned so well with the meaning of the arcanum.
WolfRe-Re's avatar
These are amazing!
Ellygator's avatar
Thanks so much! I had a lot of fun with this entire project.
Ellygator's avatar
Thanks so much!
Sinnisterdictator-v4's avatar
I've found this card online and feel in love with it. This resulted in me trying to find the deck that goes with it for the past week and a half. Imagine my surprise it was on DA this whole time! ^^"
Ellygator's avatar
I am so glad you found the deck. I think individual cards have ended up in all sorts of places by now - sometimes with my knowledge (and approval) and sometimes probably without...
Sinnisterdictator-v4's avatar
It was on google images when I searched "tarot moon card "
I actually went to a few stores to find which deck it belonged to and everyone was stumped.
I will say that all the store clerks thought your moon card was absolutely stunning.
Ellygator's avatar
Thank you! I am sorry it was such a pilgrimage for you to come full circle... In fact, I just googled the "Judgment" card and it brings up the Lucius Malfoy one leading right back to DA instead of the website where you found the "Moon".
Excellent symbolism! :) Love your tarot cards series.
Ellygator's avatar
Thank you! I was surprised how well the traditional card design fit the HP story...
So was I ;) I think it's just really, really cool. Some of them fit so well it was kinda scary, though some were a bit weird, not that I disagree with your comparisons and stuff. Like uh... hold on, I'm checking the series... um, Prince of Cups, Draco? The whole conflicting emotions is spot on, but he's not exactly a knight in shining armour, or a romantic or a seductive person. That bit had me squirming a bit. Sorry ^^; But, well, I wouldn't place him anywhere else either if I were you :)

Oh and this is just my personal opinion: I'd actually have used Sirius Black as the Hanged Man instead of Snape's worst memory. I mean I get the symbolism and everything, but Sirius seems to fit the card pretty well too.
Ellygator's avatar
Thanks so much for your well thought out comments. As I was trying to stay within families as much as possible for the court cards (didn't work for the disks...) I had to stretch things a little, and that is certainly the case for Draco (though he is one of the first boys to be in a steady relationship at school, and if you were talking to a Draco fan-girl you'd get a different opinion...)

Sirius role certainly has much of the Hanged Man in it - in OOTP it almost seems like he drew that card for the last year of his life, the way he is condemned to be so inactive in his old home, but I guess with JKR having two totally obvious card scenes (Snape's memory and Dumbledore's murder) I simply couldn't resist!
Well, you sound like you had fun (understatement, most likely) :D I certainly had fun looking through them.

You know, I disagree with the "steady relationship" bit with Draco and Pansy... I don't even think they had a real relationship. I apologise if I offend you or anything, but it seemed more like Pansy had a crush on Draco and Draco was just basking in the attention. It never seemed to go two-ways.
Ellygator's avatar
No, I agree, I was reaching a little with Pansy, but I wanted to keep the court cards "all in the family" where I could. The Disks of course are already a big exception. Still, if the Cups were Malfoy, and there really isn't any other Slytherin girl, she kind of slipped into that position. Hey, it's better than choosing Millicent Bulstrode, right?
Oh, yeah, definitely. Milicent and Draco = major YUCK ><
LestatDeBratPrince's avatar
I love the mood of the card. It makes me feel slightly foreboding:XD:
I also love all of the detail you put into your cards, it shows you work really hard and long on each one. You've really earned my respect, both with your drawing skills and your knowledge of tarot.:meow:
Ellygator's avatar
Thank you so much! It's been my most ambitious project to date, but I thoroughly enjoyed the journey, and though I've been working with different decks for many years, making my own really opened my eyes to many things. I'd almost advise a serious practitioner now to make their own deck at some point...
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