Updated: Sep 13, 2021
So where did The Tree tarot come from? I am fortunate enough to have enjoyed 27 years of working life as a practicing arboriculturalist, 25 of which have been spent in the Highlands of Scotland.
Setting out amid some of the most beautiful scenery anywhere in the world, I visited with trees on a daily basis, assessing them in detail and creating protection strategies to keep them safe alongside development. I've met trees on the wild shores of lochs, in the formal grounds of grand estates, scattered at the snow line on mountain sides, clinging to steep sided rocky gullies and contributing glorious green character within protected townscapes. My activities as a roving tree practitioner have taken me everywhere from the far north of Sutherland's Flow Country, around miles of breath-taking coastline, to Skye and the Isle of Rum in the west.
During a long winter in which the whole country was locked down, a small, personal project primarily based on my own extensive highland photo collection, got its hooks into me. Days of design and creative reflection slipped quietly by until a single, unifying belief began to wind itself through the work - the belief that humankind is too much an indivisible part of the networked green life of this planet to be above learning a great many lessons from it. What has evolved from a mid-winter impulse inspired by a lifetime spent working with trees, is a simple game of signs and self-reflection. Please play it with a light heart and an open mind - there is no dark cartomancy here. My own experience of our natural world has taught me that the wisdom imparted by nature is only ever about life, living and constant regeneration.