Friday, 12 September 2014

Ghost Tarot Overview

This week's deck, the Ghost Tarot (Lo Scarabeo, 2014), is clearly a theme deck.  As such, it may appeal to goths, as well as having potential for both Halloween and mediumistic readings.  That isn't to say that it isn't a readable deck, though.

I really like some of the imagery here.  For example, this version of Death is very atmospheric and adds some interesting symbolism.  A ghostly, cloaked figure carrying a scythe floats within a graveyard, with a mausoleum just behind.  It stands on a path through the graveyard, framed by the iron doors, and with a full moon shining brightly above it.  There is sorrow and grief here.  Yet, there is also a place for such things, and structure to help us deal with it.  And perhaps a power connected with such endings, the clarity that can be associated with closure.

The King of Wands, on the other hand, represents one of the less sterling aspects of this deck.  Some of the CGI looks overly fake.  Like the figure in the Five of Swords on Monday, there is an irreality, a plasticness, to some of the people that doesn't sit well with me.  And yet, I quite like how these ghostly courts have been done, glowing with the colour associated with their suit.  The symbolism, too, is appropriate and helpful to reading these sometimes tricky characters.  Here, the King sits firmly in his throne, glowing red and holding his wand proudly before him.  He is forthright, and dynamic even in this static pose.  His throne sits with windows behind him, and the sky glows outside: he has oversight in his given field or domain.

The Ace of Cups works nicely, too.  A ghostly hand reaches out beneath a slightly glowing goblet, which floats above a larger fount of water.  Steam rises around the waters, suggesting the veils between the worlds being drawn back.  While there isn't an overflowing here, there is a feeling of abundance and depth, an offer to experience more if we look deeply into the waters.

As for the Minors, all are clearly related to traditional RWS notions.  Yet, each adds its own quirk.  Sometimes, these work beautifully, like Monday's Five of Swords.  Other times, they are a little more strange.  The Eight of Pentacles is a case in point.  A woman in a wedding dress chisels R.I.P. onto a gravestone.  Above it floats a man's figure, with slicked back hair, little round glasses, and a book in one hand.  Is this the woman's intended?  Her father?  Or is she some kind of black widow who has already gone through seven other husbands?

Not a great deck, perhaps, but one which has enough symbolism to read (generally), and enough variety not to be a bore.  The idea of ghosts being around us all the time is one that will appeal to some, and it certainly works very powerfully in some of the cards.  What do you think?

10 comments:

  1. In short: Not my kind of deck either. Personally I would never buy it. :D

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  2. Hi Chloe! Well, this deck seems to me, to be useful for mediumship, it has sugestive images for this purpose, but I prefer not to call or bring these kind of energies :) Excellent analysis of the cards and images, as all yours! Un beso grande, hermoso fin de semana y las más brillantes Muchas Estrellas para vos y tu familia!!!

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    1. Yes, LM, I could well imagine using it for mediumship readings. I have done a few of these, and generally find them quite helpful, rather than scary :)
      Que tengas una semana muy agradable!

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  3. Very useful review page I'm glad to have found you , if you would like to follow me back I'm at http://www.astartemoonblog.com, blessings, Alison

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    1. Thanks, Alison. I try to justify my awful tarot addiction by at least being helpful to others in their deck-buying choices :D Have added you to my blog list!

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  4. When I first saw this deck, I wondered if it might be a potential purchase. A few of the cards appear emotive and they pulled me in to begin with. But looking at it as a whole, it doesn't do so much for me. A lot of these theme decks feel rushed to me and lack real soul. Over the weekend, I was looking at one which has either been released or is due to be released. The art style was lovely, just my thing. But it felt as though it had been squeezed unsuccessfully into a tarot frame. The pips were uninspiring, the symbolism had little to do with tarot. I don't like to knock other peoples work but often, I feel saddened by the wasted opportunity when a deck isn't what it could have been.

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    1. It's a shame when that happens, Steve. This one clearly was thought through, and there are some cards that work brilliantly, but the CGI doesn't sit well with me...

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  5. I was just searching these cards, and always find your reviews helpful, so I clicked in. My first thought when reading what you wrote about the 8 of pentacles image was that perhaps the woman in the wedding dress is married to her work? The ghostly man is the priest marrying her off to her work. Perhaps she chizzles into the grave stone to show that she is married to her work until she dies? She seems focused, and paying close attention to what she is doing. Anyway, great review! Blessed Be.

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    1. That's an interesting take on it, Bridgett, married to her work :) Thanks, and glad you found the review helpful!

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