Its been some time since Lance T. Miller has been "Visible" in the community. The man who brought us the Actuators and Gargoyle decks was assumed to have taken a break from playing cards and designing by many, but the fact of the matter is that Lance has been very busy and involved in the playing card community, just not in his usual way. He's taken a behind the scenes roll in many projects as well as being involved in events like the 1st Annual International Cardistry Open.
I'm sure I'm not alone in being pleasantly surprised when Lance Miller's name attached itself to the Murphy's Magic "At the Table" deck, commemorating Murphy's At the Table On Line lecture series.
So it goes without saying that this new development got me very curious to find out what else Lance has been up to that we may not know about and what's around the corner for him. One quick message and in true Lance T. Miller form he was more than happy to accommodate us with a little of his time to catch up a bit.
You've been a bit "out of the spotlight" in the community for some time, what have you been up to?
I've been working behind the scenes, with some of the best designers and artists, consulting and developing new and exciting projects that the community is sure to love. I also got to work hand in hand with Kardify to bring about the International Cardistry Open. I've collaborated, planned, and executed more than 5 deck projects (yet to release). I've also been studying fiercely. Everything from illustration technique to graphic design, to Spanish language and even a bit of computer programming. I've been way more active in the card scene than a lot of people realize and even if I'm not in the spotlight, I'm always there.
I think many people were pleasantly surprised to find out your involvement with Murphy's Magic "At the Table" deck, could you share how that came to be?
Jason Brumbalow and I have been talking about collaborating for a long time. Last year, we sat down and dreamed up some ideas and went to work. It's been an amazing experience and I'm thankful I get to work with such amazing people.
While the deck is inspired by the Murphy's Magic feature by the same name, what inspired the concept and design?
We wanted to harken back to a simpler era and capture some of the feel of classic casino decks. Workers, ones that could be used readily to perform magic but would also be classy enough to sit down and enjoy some poker. It needed to fit Murphy's aesthetic goals for the At the Table lecture series and have a sleek professional appeal. A clean diamond back pattern utilizing the logo in a typographic pattern and a slight fade on the edges was just the ticket!
The "At the Table" deck is a bit of a departure from the style we're used to seeing, do you find yourself pushing your talent in new directions?
I'm being challenged constantly to push my talent in crazy ways. I'm learning new ways of concepting projects and creating art, design techniques that will blow your mind, and mostly I'm learning to trust my instinct. All of which is really helping to create some really cool projects.
With the success of the Actuators and Gargoyle decks, and now the At the Table deck, has your creative process changed of evolved over time?
It certainly has! I used to sit and fret over whether the community would accept me if I changed a style or tried something different. So I'd almost always find myself creating the same way or getting upset that it didn't feel as full as one of my previous decks art-wise. Now I know that's part of the process and typically avoid the steps of trying to make things too complicated or feeling like I have to make my art a certain way.
What concepts and designs have you enjoyed from the playing card industry as of late?
Shout out to Jason there. The Run decks are magnificent! I remember seeing a little bit of the concept art for it early on and then when they launched, I was floored!
Can we expect any other surprises in the near future from Lance Miller?
Most definitely! I've learned that keeping a few tricks in my hat is exactly what every good magician and designer should do.
We want to thank Lance for his time and are truly excited to see what's next for him in the industry, one thing is for certain, whatever Lance produces is sure to be unique. Keep up to date on what's gong on in Lance's creative mind by following him on Facebook as well as his cardistry page at Lance Miller's Cardistry and of course on his main site lancemillerdecks.com