Monday, October 29, 2012

Asylum Playing Cards #guest

I've always got my eye out for wicked graphics, and when Milan dropped me a mail a few weeks ago, I couldn't resist giving a little splash on my blog... So over to you, Milan! (PS, I admit I have a huge soft spot for Eastern European artists). And, who knows, maybe one day I can convince Milan to do some work for my book covers, what do you think?

* * * *

Immerse yourself in the cozy feel of a straitjacket…

Relish the embrace of inexplicably long sleeves…

Discover the comforts held by the tenant of a padded room…


Story about Asylum begins 27 year ago on Friday 13th, December 1985, when I was born. Even with this prophetic and symbolic birth date in mind, nobody could have predicted that this bulky baby's size would someday be in direct proportion to my lack of common sense and amount of defiance in adulthood. Since my earliest childhood days, I have displayed a tendency towards artistic expression and a propensity for hedonist doctrines. Childhood was quite jauntily.

Every fairy tale, however, comes with a plot twist. With growth and maturity came a new understanding of time and space. Ever-deteriorating economical and political circumstances led to the realization that the anatomical-geographical location of Serbia could most accurately be compared to the rectal region of the cosmos. Along with war years, inflation and sanctions forced upon the country came about the first personal sanctions pertaining to my interests. Comic books went out of print, cartoons were taken off the air, and my penchant for drawing had to be reined in. Serbia, phonetically often mistaken for Siberia, was equally cold in its attitude towards the arts. During the two decades of instant-warfare and frequent regime changes (from communism to quasi-democracy and back), artistic pursuits took a back-seat to the more popular pastimes of the working class. Art could, at best, be considered a hobby, but by no means a profession. Wasn't the Asylum natural and logical response to all these circumstances?

Well, it was time for me to made some changes...

I made the first tentative steps of my professional career on the foreign market, through the publication of an independent publishers, collaborations with  underground movie directors, and some jobs in gaming industry. But Asylum, it should be something different - great entrance for the darkish art community, to the country without understanding for that kind of artistic expression.   Can we beat the odds?

The inspiration comes from an amalgam of several personal passions: an appreciation for film, a fascination with cards, and the irresistible allure of the Art Nouveau movement, mainly the art of Alphonse Mucha.
Having spent years working in the gaming industry, mainly on card and board game design, I felt drawn to doing something a bit more traditional. Cards posses a dose of traditionalism which gives them their appeal, and which cannot be replicated in the modern games of the gaming industry, no matter how good their design is. Creating a classic deck makes you a part of history; it gives you the impression of being part of something significant. You are given an opportunity to leave your footprint in time, by redesigning an artifact that was once responsible for people losing their heads, titles, wars, lovers, even empires. By choosing to grapple with creating a deck, you yourself become a part of tradition, and of contemporary court intrigue.

I created a ton of custom art. Even some offers for personal integration of our supporters into Asylum world.
What better way to thank your supporters than to offer them the privilege of merging with history, in a way? We all long to feel special. By giving backers the option of being part of the artwork, I am sharing with them an experience I was also privy to whilst creating the deck. I am giving them the chance to feel like they are becoming a part of tradition.

I like to look at Asylum as a developing organic form. Its quality grows with every new backer. The quality of the product will be directly proportional to the number of backers, so we will create the best deck possible, depending on the possibilities provided by the funds we end up with. We are prepared to sacrifice being economical to preserve quality. Our main asset is precisely that bit of enigma that goes with Asylum – a non-aggressive campaign that true aficionados will be able to appreciate. The core word tied to Asylum is “custom”. It's the most customized deck out there. There are no identical cards, no use of templates. Every suit symbol is different and has been given much attention.

Unsettling… Yet charming.

Sinister… Yet enticing.

Dark… Yet liberating.

Play with more than cards. Play with emotions. Deceive the mind.


Check out the kickstarter for more graphics here... Follow on Facebook, or stalk on Twitter.

1 comment:

  1. I think these would make excellent book covers, I'd love to see the results. Great feature, Nerine.