The evolution of the Sigil Arcanum

Throughout this year, the project has changed quite a bit, as I have shown with the various versions I’ve posted in this Story section.

I want to showcase here some of the progressions throughout the design process. I thought that the Magus (or The Magician if you prefer) would be a good example, because the appearance has changed probably the most amount of times.

The first attempt, with a mistaken house symbol. I used Aries by accident, and later learned that the correct ATU is Mercury (of course…)
The second version, where I fixed the house and extended the cross a bit. I also changed to black on white.
In this third iteration, I slanted the arms to reflect the arm posture of Baphomet or Waite’s Magician, representing Solve and Coagula. I also added the wand of Jupiter, the Magus’ tool.
Then, of course, came the colors.
This is the final iteration of the Magus. The lines have been made thicker, the elements moved to above his head, the infinity removed, and an arrow added to the tip of the moon on Mercury’s horns. I also added the Sickle of Saturn to complete the image of the Magus Mercury (a small sigil found in the 2nd sphere of the Ten of coins in Crowley / Harris’ Thoth Tarot).

I would also like to feature the early High Priestess card vs the Redesigned version. The older design remained the same throughout all of the early iterations of the deck, with a mistakenly incorrect House as well, Scorpio. Now I have seen both Scorpio and The Moon attributed to this Major, but the official Thoth attribution is the Moon.

I also changed the pillars by making them thinner, and removing the letters B and J from them. These stand for Boaz and Jachin, words allegedly carved on the two front pillars of the temple of Solomon. I decided to remove them because no other Majors had letters, and I wanted to keep them largely out of the deck.

I even changed the main centerpiece, to reflect the ideas of the High Priestess more, as the Moon itself didn’t feel like enough to really capture all of the life in this card.

2 thoughts on “The evolution of the Sigil Arcanum”

  1. Hello sir,

    As lifelong students of magick and tarot, we see the genius of your work and are highly impressed. We are curious how you moved from iteration 3 to 4 regarding the Magician card. We feel that the 3rd iteration design is perfect. The placement of the elements looks magical and balanced…something happens there….that is then discarded with the future design. All the cards are beautiful overall.

    • That’s a very interesting comment! I would say the reason I made the change was to better incorporate the sickle in the other hand. Thank you for pointing it out though. I’m curious if you have an opinion on the infinity being there vs being removed?


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