The ten of blades, as my father used to always tell me, is “not necessarily a card of violent death”. Not necessarily…
Where the nine of blades is about anxiety and fear in the form of anticipation, this is the card where the worst has already happened. The *only* good thing about this card is that it can sometimes mean that the worst has already happened. Otherwise, it is that place of complete and total despair, of utter physical, mental, and emotional ruin. There is nothing left.
The usual image of this card is of a man splayed out over a hillside on his stomach with ten large swords protruding from his back. Obviously this was going to be a little difficult to recreate without either a) seriously injuring Stephanie, or b) getting some of those prop knives with the retractable blades. Neither of those were on the table, so we ended up going with c) figure out something else.
There was a brief discussion of the merits of fake blood, but it seemed unlikely that that could be done quickly and easily without it looking cheesy, so we decided to just go with stabbing around Stephanie. I have to say, of all the things we’ve done so far, this was the only one that made me at all nervous- I trust myself with sharp things, and I have steady hands, but trying to stab a foot long knife within a half inch of another person’s rib cage is something one doesn’t generally on a daily basis. There was a lot of “Ok, now, hold very still…”
I’m quite pleased with how these turned out, actually- editing them was a little surreal. Stephanie in real life is quite pink and lovely, and so the process of making her look convincingly dead in the photos took a little bit of doing, and it was slightly odd to be leaning over and asking my husband “ok… does she look more dead here? or here?”. We didn’t use any makeup- I’m no makeup artist, and we didn’t really have time for it. But I think she makes a lovely fresh corpse in these.
It’s definitely the little dead hands that get me, though.