#TarotToTheExtreme (blog version), Part 1
I've started watching a lot of tarot-related channels on Youtube, and I guess tags go around there a lot where a bunch of people make themed videos talking about their decks. I wanna play! But I don't actually want to make a video myself, yikes.
Well, I kind of do. I even made a vtuber avatar that's more or less ready to go. I like the idea of it. I just get anxious about the idea of actually doing it and being seen.
I don't have a channel, but I do have a blog! I can talk about decks on a blog, that's not scary!
The first one is Tarot To The Extreme starting with this video and is all about various categories of opposites in tarot decks. Minimalist/maximalist, confronting/comforting, etc. I realize it's not going to be quite as cool without being able to flip through the cards, but I'll link decks so there's at least the option of seeing some examples.
Also there are a lot of categories and I like to ramble, so I have no idea how many parts to this there will be. I'm just going to write until I feel like it's too long and then break for another day.
The Kawaii Tarot is a very minimalist deck that doesn't at all match my usual deck requirements, to be honest. I hate pips and generally avoid any deck that doesn't have full and emotive illustrations. But it's just so frickin' cute! And pink! And CUTE!
The link I gave is the card meaning page, and those little simplistic drawings are basically the entire card. Just that on a pretty pink field. Gah. Definitely relying a lot on previous knowledge from other decks. And my memory for the suits isn't that great, so it's also a lot of looking things up.
But I love it and I enjoy using it anyway, just usually as a secondary deck if I want some more info on a reading with a more intuitive deck. I'm even considering getting the Spoopy Tarot from the same company when it comes out, but haven't decided yet. It's a lot more my typical aesthetic and just as cute, but also just as vague. Hmmmm.
The Wisdom of Avalon Oracle looks simple enough on the surface, but there are so many different types of cards in this deck. Definitely through me off for awhile at first. Most oracles I've seen are very simple and tend to avoid anything resembling suits or divisions, just a lot of variations on a theme.
This one has road signs with guide words as well as a handful of different guide/messenger groupings. Of the latter, each has the group at the top, followed by their name, then some keywords, then a full and beautiful picture. So much information! The groups are Messengers (closest thing to the Major Arcana), Faery Guides (tied to elements), and Animal Guides (basically could be its own oracle like a lot of other animal oracles, but just as one part of this one!).
I love this deck a lot, but I don't use it like a typical deck. Since it already seems set up as characters or places you might encounter as the lead in a fairy tale, I just put the deck face down in front of me like a book and turn each card like its own page. I keep turning until I feel like the story is complete. It's a lot of fun, and it was also a great exercise in exploring different ways I might approach readings.
The Faeries' Oracle was one of my first ever decks, and still one of my favorites. It was followed by the Heart of Faerie deck which will come up in the next post so I won't say much about that one here, but they do pair well together. The Faeries' Oracle is both the scarier and brighter of that pair.
A lot of the faeries read as a bit more malicious or at least mischievous in this deck than in its partner, and quite a few of the illustrations are a bit unsettling. That's not a bad thing, I like spooky and unsettling imagery in small doses sometimes and I love every single one of these cards. But, you know. Spooky.
You'd think that would make it more of a nighttime deck, but part of the unsettling-ness of it is that these are all meant to be characters hidden in plain sight, not creeping through the night. I like to use this deck during the day because it helps me open my eyes to magic and wonder in the middle of all the mundane rationality of the sun and the workday. It's really good for that. Much like watching other Froud projects like Labyrinth or The Dark Crystal, it's almost hard not to believe in magic afterwards.
Another nudity warning. That's pretty common in a lot of decks, really.
Despite drawing the day/night contrast between the two Faerie decks above and that also being a night deck, I'm not going to talk about Heart of Faerie here. Mostly because it was a perfect match for another category and I didn't want to double up. So I'll just stick a pin in that.
Right now I'm going to talk about another nighttime deck, Tarot of the Sidhe. Look at this deck. Beautiful! It's so bright and colorful, just looking at any of these cards wakes me right up.
If the Faeries' Oracle shows us a vision of magic that can exist in broad daylight, Tarot of the Sidhe shows what it looks like completely unfettered by the rational and controlled environment of the day. With this deck I take a step out of my ordinary world and right into theirs. Some caution is required, so it's good that none of these images is entirely comfortable. You should be a little uncomfortable this far into someone else's realm with someone else's rules. It's spooky in all the best ways.
Trigger warning for eyes, bones, organs...if you squick easy, maybe don't look.
Earthbound Oracle is a unique deck sized much more like a regular set of playing cards and therefore incredibly easy to riffle shuffle. Or at least, much easier than most tarot and oracle decks. It features some unsettling imagery, but it speaks to me and I like it.
Warning for partial nudity
Most decks are too big for me to comfortably riffle shuffle, but the Art Nouveau Mini Tarot is SO. TINY! Turns out that's even worse for shuffling.
It's incredibly pretty and I like to look at the cards, but I always kind of make a mess trying to shuffle, even just an overhand shuffle. The cards just want to fly right out of my hands. I don't use this deck often anyway, not because of the shuffle but just because I have it dedicated to a specific purpose instead of everyday use. But I am glad that needing to shuffle it doesn't happen to come up much.
That's half the categories, so I'll stop here for now and come back with the rest soon.