We speak with the brilliantly talented illustrator of our latest Tarot Cards. Welcome to the Laurence King blog Natalie!
Can you firstly give us a brief introduction in to who you are and what you do?
Hello! I’m Natalie Foss, a Norwegian freelance illustrator currently based in London. I draw primarily for magazines, but also work on personal projects and participate in exhibitions.
I studied illustration at Kingston University, and slowly but steadily started taking on illustration commissions after I graduated.
What was your childhood ambition?
My childhood ambition was something completely different than becoming an illustrator! I’ve loved drawing for as long as I can remember, but I’ve also loved animals for as long as I can remember, and my biggest dream back then was to become a veterinary. I still care for them, and try my best to help them in other ways.
Who was or still is your mentor?
I’ve never really had one mentor that I’ve been looking up to or taking inspiration from. I’ve always tried to do my own thing, and my inspiration is taken from all over the place. But the singer of Rudimentary Peni, Nick Blinko, definitely inspired me to focus on my drawing and pursue a career in illustration. He has a completely different style than I have, but there’s something about his rawness and detailed technique that made me want to get back into drawing after some years of “drought”.
Can you tell us a bit about your process? What steps do you take from the initial brief to completion of project and how long did it take you to create all of these characters?
I usually start doing a little bit of research on the topic, as well as finding reference photos and collect images that I find inspiring etc. for a mood board.
On this project I did some research about the history of tarot, as well as looking up some of the movies where the characters are taken from.
It took a good while to create all the characters. Creating portraits as well as making them look right can be hard, especially when there’s a deadline involved. A tarot deck contains a lot of cards, and I spent around 6-7 months working on them! It feels really good to see and touch the final product after that much work!
What projects are you currently working on and what can we look forward to seeing from you in the future?
I’m participating in two online exhibitions through Wow x Wow gallery this month (October) and in November, called “Curious Alchemy” and “ Portals”, as well as working on some personal book/comic projects. I have a lot of ideas, and am hoping to put them out in the world soon! I’m also drawing weekly/bi-weekly portraits for Stylist France.
Finally, what book are you reading and what is your favourite game to play?
I’m currently reading “The Bees” by Laline Paull. I’m a quite restless person with a wandering mind, so I usually read in small doses at a time!
I’m very nostalgic when it comes to games, so I would say that Ludo, Snakes and Ladders, Connect 4 and memory games are some of my favourites. Quite simple, but enjoyable! There’s a whole new world of games I haven’t tried yet , so I’m sure there are many other favourites out there.
Be guided by the stars with the unique tarot inspired by movie characters. Begin with Tom Hanks in Forrest Gump as the Fool, Morgan Freeman in Shawshank Redemption for Temperance, and Julie Andrews in the Sound of Music for the Sun, and you'll find a perfectly suited character represents every card. Includes 78 cards that work as a fully functional tarot deck, plus a booklet which explains the choice of movie stars and the deeper personality traits they embody, as well as information on how to interpret the cards and conduct your own readings.