A friendship struck up during an evening illustration class at the School of Visual Arts blossomed into a collaboration that is bearing its first fruit with the launch of The Garden Journey.
IN THEIR RESPECTIVE METIERS of botanical illustration (Joanne) and design/creative direction (Natalie), the creators share a love for creative work that is grounded in intuition and animated by a transportative, evocative sense of beauty.
A happy hour meet-up in the spring of 2019 sowed the first seeds of what would become The Garden Journey. Collaborating remotely throughout 2020 and 2021, Joanne painted the collection of 22 illustrations that form the core of the tarot deck, and Natalie dreamed up the evocative palette and aesthetic of each card.
Inspired by sources as diverse as French confectionery packaging, Pre-Raphaelite watercolors, and Gucci’s Garden Collection, The Garden Journey represents the debut of the duo’s mission: to create objects of beauty that help people experience nature’s mysteries as a portal to reconnection with themselves.
A New York Botanical Garden trained illustrator, some of Joanne’s earliest memories are of plants—a small lilac tree into whose blossoms she would bury her nose every spring, the glossy photos of bulbs in Breck catalogs. She was the sole borrower of the “How to Draw Flowers” book from her elementary school library many times over.
Her botanical paintings for The Garden Journey are suffused with the same sense of wonder and meditative joy that she remembers from her childhood fascination. Twenty years later, realizing that her life as a tech executive seemed to be passing her by, Joanne picked up a pencil to start training in the centuries-old art of botanical illustration. This started her off on a very simple foundation upon which she builds every day: looking at flowers.
TOTEM CARD: The Hanged Man
IF SHE WERE A FLOWER: Iris
After a quarter-life crisis, several misguided career choices, and a great loss, Natalie finally received the message: she was meant to do creative work, and there was no use wasting any more time. During a period of introspection, she recalled her childhood pleasures: inhaling the perfume of new books, hoarding copies of every major women’s fashion magazine, obsessing over stationery and anything typographic. She abandoned her ‘stable’ marketing job to joyfully embark on a journey filled with art & design courses, a stint at a letterpress studio, a fancy design job at a modern furniture brand, and finally, the courage to strike out on her own as a creative director and strategist. These days, she is fortunate to partner with brilliant creatives (and friends) like Joanne to bring their visions into the physical world.
TOTEM CARD: Death
IF SHE WERE A FLOWER: Echinacea