When it comes to Tarot, there are endless ways in which you can bond with your cards. Some Tarot readers recommend sleeping with your deck or picking one card per day. It’s not that those suggestions are wrong, I’ve even done those things myself, but here in Aquamarine, we like to spice things up a bit. So, in this post, I’ll tell you about artsy ways in which you can connect with your cards. Needless to say, you can come up with your own ideas.
1. Paint a card
You don’t have to be Frida Kahlo for this one. You don’t even have to paint something recognizable. Grab your brushes and your acrylic paint and let your inner self guide you. What does the card bring to mind? What kind of energy does it give off? Which colors match the sensations you feel when you look at the character or the whole picture in the card?
It doesn’t have to be perfect, it simply has to be. It doesn’t have to make sense to others, only to you. By doing this, you’ll be reading the cards with your Heart and your Third Eye chakras. This is because you’ll feel the painting transmitting the energy of the card to you. Then, when you do a reading, your body will remember those sensations, so it will be easier for you to interpret that meaning. And you may get something to decorate your walls, too! A win-win if you ask me.
2. Print a picture of the card and color it
Now, if you don’t feel that painting is your cup of tea, you can color a picture instead. I bought myself a Tarot coloring book. When I saw it at the bookstore, I could already see how useful it would be for tarot readers. First, by working on the cards with your own hands, you’re already bonding with them. This is because you’re impregnating them with your own energy. And second, because you can color each element in the card according to what you feel. Remember that color correspondences are very useful in Tarot. For instance: red is related to lust and passion, blue to intuition and emotions, green to abundance, health and luck, and so on. A fun exercise would be to paint a card with colors that are the opposite of its energy (soothing colors for The Tower and aggressive colors for the Four of Swords, for instance). It would be interesting to see how those turn out.
3. Write a poem or a song
You can tap into your Shakesperian self and write a poem related to the card you want to connect with: write about its characteristics, the character in it, its aura, anything that comes to mind. You can even take it to the next level and create a song, which would also be helpful when trying to memorize the meanings of the cards.
It can be as long or as short as you want. It doesn’t have to be perfect, remember that this is just for you. I’m not a poet, but if I had to write a poem about a Tarot card (The Sun, for example), it would go like this: Apollo’s oracle delivers a message / it enlightens my path / and foresees quite a passage / full of joy / full of success / full of all the things I wanna possess.
If you find it hard to think of words that rhyme, you can use a rhyme dictionary to help you.
4. Write a story
Another option is to write a short story. It can be from any perspective you want. Imagine the story of the character in the card: how did they get there? What’s their profession? Why do they dress in that particular way? What’s the reason behind their facial expression?
Write down anything you can think of. Popularly, the tarot is known as The Fool’s journey. The Fool represents us in our beginnings when we barely knew anything about the world and we had lots of adventures to embark on until we discovered what the world had in store (that is why the end of this journey is The World). The Fool travels throughout the Major Arcana, and each card represents one stage in life in which he gains knowledge and experience. It’s a story in itself, and this character has already been through a lot. You can use this concept as inspiration, or you can make up your own.
If none of the other activities seem appealing to you, then you may want to give this one a go. Put on some music, it can be as upbeat or as slow as you want. Think about the character in the card you want to connect with: What song would they dance to? How would they move? What would their facial expression be? This will enable you to bond with your cards on a physical level. In this way, muscle memory will make it easier for you to remember the meaning of the card.
For example, if I had to impersonate The Fool, I would be skipping and jumping around with my arms extended like airplane wings. For me The Fool gives off a childish vibe, so that’s why he makes bouncy movements. I would look up a mystical song for The High Priestess and move slowly and in a very aesthetic way, and perhaps a chaotic rock anthem for The Tower, with more aggressive moves.
6. Make jewelry
This is a good option if you want the energy of the card of your choice to keep you company throughout the day anywhere you go. You can make whatever suits your aesthetic: rings, necklaces, bracelets, earrings, tiaras, etcetera. I personally like to sport earrings. I have two ways to make them: with beads that match the colors in the card and a charm or with a printed picture of the card in a small size.
Since you’re making accessories, you can make them as minimalist or as stylish as you want! You can add charms, chains, hoops and more. You can even add crystals associated with the card.
7. Get a tattoo
Tattoos are marks that stay on our bodies forever. If you are indecisive, afraid of needles, or underage, you can always get temporary tattoos. You can draw them yourself with eyeliner or a pen. Henna tattoos are also a great choice for temporary tattoos. You can get whatever will help you bond with the card of your choice: a symbol, a number, an animal, or even the whole card! Like in the previous activity, in this way, you’ll be permanently exposed to the energy of the card.
I hope you liked these alternative ways of connecting with tarot cards. As always, you can modify them as needed to be suitable for your practice. If you have another idea that can be useful for other witches in the community, please leave a comment!