Jenny Hamasaki's stunning oracle deck illustrations are steeped in Japanese folklore and culture

American artist Jenny Hamasaki has collaborated with French author Thierry Surgeon to create The Oracle of the Rising Sun, a 60-card oracle deck which features imagery from traditional Japanese folklore and culture.

Do you believe your future is written in the cards? If so, you'll want to check out The Oracle of the Rising Sun. Published by tarot card specialists Arcana Sacra, this oracle deck invites people to embark on a journey of self-discovery guided by "the wisdom and beauty of Japan."

If you're unfamiliar with oracle decks, they're not too distantly removed from tarot cards. By using them, people get an insight into their fortune. If they're reading The Oracle of the Rising Sun cards, they're also treated to the stunning illustrations drawn by Jenny Hamasaki, also known as Jenny à la Mode.

Created by Thierry Surgeon, the deck is inspired by the pair's shared love for all things Japan, including the country's culture, as well as its myths, folklore and traditions. Each card serves as a portal into a world of symbolism and guidance, with familiar imagery such as a koi carp, a samurai and a kitsune on hand to provide insight.

These meticulously realised illustrations are not merely chosen for their aesthetic qualities either. As well as looking amazing, they contain hidden meanings that can be deciphered through careful reading. For example, there's the Bonzai card, which symbolises the growth of one's abilities, and the venerable samurai, which represents self-control and courage.

Interestingly enough, the story of how the deck came to be is one of chance and fate, and it all began on Halloween 2019 in a vibrant nightclub. Jenny was seeking adventure in the country when Thierry happened to cross her path by coincidence.

The timing couldn't have been better; he was hunting for an illustrator to bring his deck to life, and apparently, unseen forces had put his life on a collision course with the perfect artist. Not only that, they were closer than they could have imagined. Jenny could see the roof of Thierry's building from her balcony! No mean feat in the biggest megacity on the planet.

It wasn't until 2020 that work on the project started in earnest. Thanks to the world pressing pause due to the pandemic, the pair found the time to get down to the task. Far from grappling with uncertainty and introspection, they embarked on a creative odyssey shaped by the cards.

"Throughout the project, a series of magical and synchronistic events unfolded, reaffirming the mystical power of the cards," they explain. "One such instance occurred while crafting the 'Kokeshi' card, symbolising birth, children, and new projects.

"It was during the creation of this card that Jenny received a call from a friend announcing her pregnancy, a heartwarming manifestation of the card's essence."

Small events like their chance meeting and the way life appeared to be reflecting art helped to elevate The Oracle of the Rising Sun from merely an artistic endeavour to something more personal and transformational for both Jenny and Thierry.

"In the act of creating, they found solace and purpose amid the uncertainty of the outside world," they conclude. "For Jenny, it was a journey of self-discovery, leading to mastery of digital illustration and a deeper connection to her Japanese heritage."

Want to see how the cards can transform your life, too? Order The Oracle of the Rising Sun from Arcana Sacra today.


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