Friday, 26 December 2014

Dondorf Lenormand App Review

Intro Screen Shot
The  Dondorf Lenormand app from The Fool's Dog is an absolute gem!  They have taken all their tarot app savvy and applied it to Lenormand cards, creating a very complete, beautiful and user-friendly app for those who read, or would like to read, Lenormand.

The app uses a version of the Dondorf cards, with the original printer's mark.  The Dondorf images may also be familiar to some from the French Cartomancy deck published by Lo Scarabeo (2005), from the Königsfurt edition (Lenormand Orakelkarten, 2007), or from one of several smaller, self-published print runs of various versions. 

Not only have they used a well-known, traditional deck which is easy and clear to read, there are also two sets of instructions.  One is a translation of the traditional meaning sheet originally printed with the Dondorf deck.  The other is a more modern take on Lenormand interpretations, based primarily on the work of Rana George and Caitlín Matthews. So, there is plenty of material here for someone new to Lenormand, as well as enough to interest the more experienced reader.

The app continues this theme of offering both traditional and modern takes on the cards in its spreads section.  This is incredibly comprehensive, offering one, two, three, four, and five card draws, with three different approaches to the five card pull (two simple lines, one with a theme card and one straight up, and a cross spread). It also offers an eight card choices spread, a themed or unthemed nine card square, a free form spread, and both a 9x4 and an 8x4+4 Grand Tableau.  There is a short explanation of how to read each spread, including a brief overview of Houses for the Grand Tableaux, though knighting and mirroring are not discussed.

Grand Tableau, Spreads Screen, Four Cards on Acqua Cloth
The functionality is exceptional!  It is easy to access information on the cards and spreads, both in the Explore section and from within a reading.  Not only that, you can choose how you want the cards shuffled (riffle/wash etc) and drawn (face up/down, from top or bottom of the deck or from a fan), or whether you want to skip all that and go straight to the reading (my personal preference for a GT).

You also have a large choice of reading cloths (30, including the possibility of uploading your own image to use as a backdrop).  Not only that, but you can use alternate Man and Woman cards in a variety of ways: two men, two women, or man and woman facing in a variety of directions (depending on your past/future preferences and how you like them to face in relation to each other).  While this isn't a function I would use often, it's always nice to have options.

Nine Square on Blue Swirl Cloth
Then there is the journal and send functions. You can make your own notes on a reading very easily, with no apparent limit on how much you can write (I got bored after about twenty lines of text).  And you can send a reading via Facebook, email or Twitter, with a choice of sending just the spread, the spread with a title, or with the card meanings and your own journal entry.  While I wouldn't send any of these unedited or on their own to a client, with some very simple editing or an additional email interpretation it could easily be used for professional readings.

Altogether, this is an exceptional app that could be used by anyone from a novice to a professional reader.  As well as being amazingly comprehensive, it is very affordable, too.  Definitely five stars!