Tarot Talks Volume XVI: An interview with Mary Evans, creator of the Road to Nowhere Oracle

June 19th, 2017

Hi my beautiful souls! Summer is here, the Season of Wands!!!! That alchemy that gets shit done, wonder why so many babies are born in the winter? Well the Season of Wands has us getting into action & the best way to do so is with a strong sense of self. Divination tools help us to better understand self, where we are in the world & how we connect with others. Mary Evans has created an Oracle that allows one to connect with self on a very deep level. It is wonderful for those Summer Nights where you are trying to delve into self, & do some shadow work. I hope that you enjoy reading about this deck as much as I have!

-HERU JEROME

  The Road to Nowhere Oracle, by Mary Evans

The Road to Nowhere Oracle, by Mary Evans

Interview
Mary Evans creator of the Road to Nowhere Oracle

“Every picture has its shadows & it has some sort of light” Joni Mitchell…. This statement is so true to see the light we must understand what resides in the darkness. Mary Evans has created a deck rich in imagery that helps one to connect with all aspects of self, shadows included!

Worthy Tarot: What inspired you to embark on the journey to create a new deck?

ME: This is the fifth deck project I have undertaken. It feels like this new light bulb of inspiration, but more of an expansion upon the work I have already created. Each deck I have made thus far reflects the changes in my life & environment. They are portraits of my ideas & spirituality at the time when they were created. I started merging my art with divination when I was 23 years old. Now 27, it’s really cool to look back on my previous work & see how things have evolved for me.

  Mary Evans, creator of the Road to Nowhere Oracle

Mary Evans, creator of the Road to Nowhere Oracle

I began the Road to Nowhere Oracle soon after I moved to Joshua Tree California. It was a big move for me. I didn’t know many people in Joshua Tree & I came here on advice from my psychic. It was the first time I moved without a friend or a partner or for school – the first time I lived alone, working for myself full-time. Truly the most independent I had been in my life. When you don’t have your job, partner, term paper, or whatever, to blame for your sadness or frustration, you have to look yourself straight in the mirror. It’s clear that the issues are within, meaning you have power to do the work to transform it. Living out in the middle of the desert leaves space for you to process & self-reflect. Not all of this is rainbows & butterflies. Living out here has made me feel more comfortable with addressing the traumas of the past. You can see some of these shadow elements throughout the deck. I think these new energies entering my life influenced the inspiration for the deck’s creation.

  The Road to Nowhere Oracle by Mary Evans

The Road to Nowhere Oracle by Mary Evans

My favorite oracle deck is the Secret Dakini by Penny Slinger. That deck really opened me up to a new way of viewing divination. If you have worked with Penny Slinger’s deck, you can most likely see its influence in these cards. Much of my aesthetic is rooted in punk and d.i.y. culture, whereas most of my early childhood influences were colorful & whimsical southern folk art. I think this deck is reflective of both.

Worthy Tarot: The visuals in this deck, are much different than your decks in the past yet you have managed to remain in a transformational frequency. How does this deck differ other than the look of it?

ME: There are certain feelings or expressions that as an artist I may not be able to capture with pen & paper. Using found images was a way to purpose the world around me to express my thoughts. My decks carry a certain playfulness & whimsy paired with a sharp edge of darker elements. To me, this is how I find balance in efforts to explain profound themes in life. I am hoping that this same spirit carries over in the Road to Nowhere deck. It’s difficult to say just how different it is from my other decks without having been able to use it in a reading yet.

  The Road to Nowhere Oracle by Mary Evans

The Road to Nowhere Oracle by Mary Evans

Worthy Tarot: What was the process like to create this deck, how long did it take you?

ME: I am unlike most other artists that you meet. If you know me, you know how hard I work. People often have a vision of full-time artists as lazy, & this is something that I often fight when explaining my business to those with more conventional jobs.

Sometimes I feel shamed for how relentlessly I dedicate myself to my work. Some people have called me a workaholic. What these people don’t understand about me is that this is not just work for me. I have been drawing since I could hold a crayon. The baby-dolls in my mom’s attic have crayon scribbles on the tops of their heads. This is not just a work effort; this is what deeply fulfills my life’s purpose.

Working on new artistic endeavors is what makes me the most happy in life. I live doing this & put my all into it. I keep an industrious schedule for my projects & work hard to meet my self-imposed deadlines. I started the Road to Nowhere Oracle Deck in December 2016 & finished it right before I turned 27 in May 2017. The actual artwork took 2 months & the rest of the time was dedicated to writing the guidebook & formatting. Right now I am in the process of proofing before I print :) .

  The Road to Nowhere Oracle by Mary Evans

The Road to Nowhere Oracle by Mary Evans

Worthy Tarot: Do you think that you would create a Tarot Deck that can pair with this one?

ME: You know, I’m really not sure. I would like to take a break from making decks for now. I love tarot & divination so much – it has done incredible things in my life, but I feel called to work in some other interest areas. Currently I am writing a book about my philosophy on creating spiritual practices. Writing is a challenging medium that I enjoy & feel it is helping me grow.

I have a lot more to say, but I have directed most of that voice to a very particular audience. I want to expand & see what happens. This doesn’t mean I’ll never make a deck again. I am sure I’ll return to deck making at some point. But for now, you might be seeing me in some different avenues.  

Worthy Tarot: Did the current tone of the climate in our country right now influence the images in this deck?

ME: Man… I think it’s difficult for this political climate not to affect our lives & work at this point. It’s not like before now the government wasn’t corrupt & didn’t mistreat its people. The difference might be that we are now nose-to-nose with the stare of things as there are.

I have thought about if what is going on with our country has had an influence on this work. When I create these spiritual tools, I like to give them freedom to speak as they may. I do feel the energy in this deck has been somewhat shaped by what has been going on. This deck is bolder in confronting deep shadow themes than any other I have made. Even titling the deck “Road to Nowhere” was something I hesitated over, my concern being that people would think it was too morose. Ultimately, this is the title & work I felt most connected to.

Worthy Tarot: I know an artist’s work becomes like their children so it’s hard to pick a favorite. Do you have a favorite card in this deck?

ME: Yes! A hard question! I’m not completely sure without having used the cards in a reading for myself. However, The Hypnotists card best depicts my original vision for the deck.

  The Road to Nowhere Oracle by Mary Evans

The Road to Nowhere Oracle by Mary Evans

Worthy Tarot: If someone is interested in your deck how would they get a hold of you?

ME: You can purchase my decks on my website www.spirit-speak.com

Or-

On Etsy www.etsy.com/shop/spiritspeaktarot