Let’s talk about tarot cards and creativity.
It’s been said that artists love tarot cards… or maybe I just said that because I’m an artist and love them. But, any true artist could look at a pack of tarot cards and become obsessed. Why is that?
Many people use tarot cards for creativity, and this is a practice I have adopted over the past few years that I’ve grown to love.
Some think of tarot cards as fortune-telling cards, or something they don’t want to mess with because they think they’re evil. At the end of the day, they are just printed cards.
Believe what you want, but tarot cards can also be a great tool for reflecting on situations in your life.
If you’re a creative person, you should have a deck! If you’re into mysterious and hidden things like me (my Scorpio moon is shining here) then you’re probably already into the tarot or you are interested in learning more.
As I mentioned, the tarot has been used for divination purposes for a very long time but this post is not going to cover that part of tarot cards.
In this post, we are simply going to talk about why tarot cards are excellent tools to get your mind thinking and generate creative ideas for your projects.
What Are Tarot Cards?
A Tarot card deck is a pack of 78 cards that are broken up into two parts, the Major Arcana and the Minor Arcana. Learning the tarot could take years. Each card has a meaning, a number associated with it, an element (fire, water, earth, air) an astrological sign, + more! This alone has so much information that we artists and writers can pull from to spark our imagination.
There are many books out there explaining the history and meanings behind the cards. If this is something you really want to learn more about, I’d get a book or just search the internet. I have read books, taken classes, and researched a lot over the years. Grab a notebook and start writing down meanings, what you feel from the card, and other meanings associated with the card.
Using Tarot Cards For Creativity & Inspiration
Each card has so many symbols and signs associated with it that if you pulled one card and looked up its meaning, you alone can stream so many ideas from the symbolism alone. Let’s break down what you can take away from the cards. (please note you personally may have more ideas – the fun of this is that everyone can find something new & different in the cards)
Inspiration From Tarot Cards
Here are some things you can take away and dive into from every card in the tarot:
- Elemental symbolism
- Color symbolism
- Imagery symbolism & meanings
- The literal card meaning – (based on the Rider Waite Smith meanings)
- How the card makes YOU specifically feel
- Laying out cards into a spread to get a bigger picture, story, & emotion
As you can see, there are so many ideas that can stem from the tarot. If artists and writers don’t have a deck of these cards in their possession, they’re missing out! I have developed so many plot ideas and character arcs just by pulling cards.
Along with writing, I have developed ideas for paintings from the emotions I get just from pulling a few cards. Using tarot cards for creativity can open doors in your brain that you never knew could be opened.
Tarot cards for writing are also a great way to clarify where you are going with your story. I have pulled cards already having an idea in my mind and the cards literally clarified it for me. Sometimes they can act as your friend as they guide you through your many ideas. I’m a Gemini, so my ideas are endless and I can never shut my brain off.
Check out this book, Tarot For Writers. It breaks down exactly how you can use the cards to write, and develop ideas, plots, etc. It also explains the cards really well and the themes behind them. I 100% recommend and take out this book often to reference.
Favorite Tarot Decks For Creativity
There are so many decks out there to explore. As I have grown my collection over the years, I can tell you with confidence there is a deck for everyone. No matter your taste or style, you ought to find one you LOVE.
There are traditional decks, decks based on movies and TV shows, different aesthetic decks, seasonal decks, and so much more.
I also like to use certain decks for specific projects. For example, if I am creating a painting or writing a scene about the fall season, I may use the Halloween Tarot Card Deck for inspiration. It not only gets you in the mood for that season but can help pull ideas and feelings that you can use for your work. Working with a deck that is related to your project helps a lot.
A good general deck that can be used for basically anything is the Traditional Rider-Waite Smith deck. The archetypes are very clear in this deck and it is so versatile to use for a variety of projects.
Below are my favorite tarot card decks for creativity.
(Please note this is only a short list and there are so many more out there. Remember, there is a deck for everyone!)
Rider-Waite Smith Tarot Deck
The Rider-Waite deck is a classic. It is the most popular tarot deck out there. The Rider-Waite has inspired every tarot deck to follow with its iconic archetypes and symbolism in the cards. A great beginner-friendly deck as well if you want to learn the original meanings of the cards.
Light Seer’s Tarot
I put off getting The Light Seer’s Tarot Deck for a while because I thought it wasn’t for me. Recently I was able to get it on sale, and now it’s one of my favorites! So much emotion is illustrated in the cards and I have successfully used these cards to develop many characters in a series I am writing.
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The Modern Witch Tarot Deck
This cute deck is a modern version of the traditional Rider-Waite deck. If the Ride-Waite deck is too outdated for you, check out this deck. It features modern items, like cell phones. A great tarot deck to use for creative thinking when creating modern art and modern-time writing.
As I mentioned above, I love to pull out my Halloween Tarot Deck during the fall. It gets me into the season and helps with seasonal projects. Plus the tin these cards come in is super cute and is helpful for storing them!
The Nightmare Before Christmas Tarot Deck
I mentioned earlier that there are decks based on movies & TV shows. This tarot card deck is in my collection mostly for collecting purposes but if you love the aesthetic of this movie and want to dive into the world for inspiration for your work, then getting a deck like this would be great for you.
This post was all about using tarot cards for creativity.
The ideas and possibilities are endless. As an artist and writer, using cards is part of my daily routine. When I’m not in the creative mood I like to pull a card when I’m feeling down or unsure about something just to see what the universe has to say. It’s all in good fun, and do what works for you!
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Amanda The Green Artist
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