Interview with Siolo Thompson – Creator of The Linestrider Tarot

Interview with Siolo Thompson – Creator of The Linestrider Tarot

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I admit it. I am a total Tarot addict (most of you know this about me already) so when I started to follow Siolo’s art on Instagram I was so excited to follow her journey as her Tarot deck came into being. I backed the deck on Indiegogo the nano second I saw that it was live. Because there are just some decks you fall instantly in love with. The Linestrider Tarot is one of those for me.

With the huge success of the Indiegogo Campaign it wasn’t long before the deck was picked up by Llewellyn and is going to be released in May 2016. Which is awesome for those who missed the limited run of the deck. You can pre-order your deck at your favourite online destinations like Amazon and The Book Depository. I have included a video at the end of me going through the Linestrider Tarot for those who have not seen this deck before.

I am so happy to be sharing Siolo’s journey and interview with my Tarot Tribe.

Can you share a little about yourself. Where you are from, what you are passionate about and what is your profession?

I was born in Apia, Western Samoa (to an American mother and Samoan father) but I ended up spending a good potion of my childhood/adolescence living in Bolivia and Peru. I live in Seattle now and have found a good community here and a great love for the beauty of the Pacific Northwest. The intense green landscape and perpetual gray skies are the perfect environment for me. For several years now I have worked full time as an artist and it’s been a challenging but extremely rewarding path. Other than art, literature, and food fill my life with joy and creativity.

How did this journey of creating the Linestrider Tarot unfold?

The Linestrider Tarot deck took me about a year to create. Once I decided that I did indeed want to embark on the journey of creating this deck, I became pretty obsessed with every aspect of the process. I played around with a lot of different materials and compositions and eventually committed to the water color on white as I felt like it was the style that gave the most room to the reader and provided enough detail on each card but also allowed the eyes and mind to rest on the images.

What were the unexpected challenges creating the Linestrider Tarot?

There were parts of the process that really showed me where some of my own deficiencies are. For example, the Emperor was very hard for me, I probably drew him ten times before realizing that my own lack of a strong father figure was impeding my ability to really connect with this card. Honestly, I’m still not happy with him, I feel like the archetype is represented but the emotion is absent. Also, consistency is a key factor in a deck, each card needs to feel like it is part of the same thing. There were several cards that needed to be changed to fit in better with the deck.

What is your favorite Tarot Card? (of your deck or in general)

I’ve always loved the Hermit card and I’m really happy with my rendition of him. It’s a card I strongly relate to and I feel very connected to the Linestrider version of the card. The King of Wands is another card that I feel really happy with. I think my King of Wands is a fresh take on the card that represents the warmth and fiery charisma of this king.

640campaignHow do you use the Tarot in your spiritual practice?

Tarot is a feature of my daily life. I use the cards to help me focus my thoughts and process my feelings about my work and relationships. For me the cards are most helpful when I am trying to understand why I’m feeling a certain way, it just gives me the time and space to think about what is going on internally and how it’s affecting my life and actions. I’d say that tarot is almost a meditative practice for me.

Any advice for the artists and creators reading this?

When other creatives come to me for advice it’s almost always about self-promotion, brand development, and marketing. I even teach some classes on the subject! In my opinion the most important thing is know what you want, be super honest with yourself about your goals in art and in life. How can you achieve your goals if you don’t know what they are? For example with this project, the Linestrider Tarot, I was absolutely committed to getting it published. I wanted to see the deck in major stores and I really focused on making that a reality.

HermitSpreadI did a crowdfunding campaign to print the deck in part because I felt like a successful crowdfunding campaign would be a ‘proof of concept’ that could make the deck more attractive to potential publishers. I also paid close attention to the feedback I got from the campaign supporters and used all that information to try and improve the deck and make it as commercially viable as possible. In the end all that hard work did pay off and the deck is now available for preorder via the publisher, Llewelyn Worldwide and can also be ordered through Barnes and Noble or Amazon. The deck will be in stores May 2016! (

Any exciting projects in the creative pipeline?

Yes! I’m working on a Lenormond style deck and I am so excited to see it begin to take shape. This phase of the project is so much fun for me. I’m researching each card, the traditions and anecdotes attached to the various decks, the imagery used and the art origins. I’m also chatting with people who read Lenormand and trying to figure out what ‘extra’ cards would really be helpful for practitioners. I know that a project like this could take many months to complete but it is so exciting to this deck take over my studio and to hear the voices of the cards. It’s a magical process for me.

Rapid Fire Round!

Starsign? Sagittarius

Favorite flavor of ice-cream? Pistachio

Do you have any pets? We have a cat named Dog and a snake named Snake. Though their official names are Mr. Beanhands, a large black kitty and Zelda who is a shy but very sweet American corn snake

What book are you currently reading? Blood Meridian and a book on the history of cartomancy

Name a film you have seen more than 5 times? Kronos (from Guillermo del Toro)

Who is your biggest inspiration? Creators who are constantly evolving and can carry their vision to all kinds of wacky places while still getting things finished – the film director Michel Gondry for example or Guillermo del Toro

What is your go-to crystal? Hmmm… probably amethyst, it feels the most calming to me.

How can we follow you and your projects?

Website: or head over to for tarot specific news

Instagram: @siolothompson


Tarot Reader Personaility

Until Next week...

2 thoughts on “Interview with Siolo Thompson – Creator of The Linestrider Tarot”

  1. What a great interview! I love the Linestrider deck so much and I’m so happy that it got picked up by a big publisher – you deserve it, Siolo! <3 I'm excited to see how the oracle deck turns out!

  2. Pingback: Edgewalkers + Changelings: a review of the Linestrider Tarot - Little Red Tarot

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