How Tarot Can Help Tap Your Creativity with Fiona Tankard

by Guest Writer on August 22, 2012 in Real Life Tarot

Tarot Vision Board

I first met Fiona online when I read an intriguing post about her desire to bring Tarot to the mainstream via internet niche marketing. She was asking on a popular IM blog if Tarot and marketing was a viable ‘niche’.

As a Taurus, I love anything ‘business’ but I also love helping people through spiritual tools such as the Tarot. So I was rapt when I saw Fiona’s post and connected with her straight away. She told me more about her Tarot business, which also focuses on using the Tarot to help with day-to-day issues. And I later found out that she had used her cards to write the post – how neat!

So, let me introduce Fiona Tankard, internet marketing and Tarot extraordinnaire, to talk to you about how Tarot can help tap your creativity.

If I am feeling fed up and unproductive I go shopping, or go online, or watch TV or have some chocolate! It’s only temporary relief which makes me forget for a short time. But once the film is over or the chocolate just a few crumbs skulking guiltily inside a screwed up wrapper, the problem is still there. I feel what I can only describe as “all wrong” inside.

The cure for me is always the same and it never fails. I have to get creative, I have to make something. It doesn’t matter if it’s a cake, a painting or an article. I am only truly happy if, when I go to sleep at night, something new exists – created by me – that wasn’t there when I woke up that morning. It doesn’t matter if it’s very good or not. Creativity is its own reward!

Unfortunately our friend creativity is often the first thing to go when we have a pile of “important” things to do – checking emails, answering calls, cleaning the house …

We have to put creativity right back where it belongs, at the top of our list of priorities. That’s where tarot can help. Those 78 cards are wonderful tools to access your right brain and get those creative juices flowing.

So here are three ways to use the cards as inspiration for creative projects. If you don’t have your own deck you can easily access tarot images online:

1. Creative Focus

Quiet your mind then ask the cards which aspect of your creativity you need to work on. Shuffle and select one card.  Spend some time looking at the image on the card and see which aspect of it grabs your attention. Is it the colour? One of the symbols or objects? The expression on the main character’s face? Somewhere there lies the answer to which creative area needs more focus from you. There is no right or wrong answer and you don’t need a book list of meanings or keywords. It’s what it means to you when you look at it that counts.

queen_wandsExample: Queen of Wands

I drew the Queen. She is dressed in yellow and wearing a cloak sits on a tall backed throne. She holds a staff of living wood in her right hand and a sunflower in her left. A black cat sits at her feet looking ahead. The overall colours of the card are golds and oranges. I am immediately attracted to the sunflower and the wood staff with green shoots coming out of it. My first thought is gardening.

I always go into my garden when feeling stressed but I have neglected it recently. I know working in nature puts me in a different mind state. This is a well-known effect of repetitive work. It can put you in an alpha brain state( 9- 14 cycles per second as opposed to the normal 15 – 40 cycles per second of the active, engaged beta mind). Weeding and pruning are not very creative in themselves but doing them can help you switch off and the result may be some creative problem solving.

However, the card makes me think of actually creating something for the garden – maybe a sculpture or piece of art. The sunflower on the card would be a good place to start. And maybe when it is too hot to go outside I could paint a picture of a garden or a sunflower?

2.Make a Tarot Vision Board

Tarot-vision-board

I  have already written about how I love creating vision boards. Being a bit of a child, the idea of cutting out pictures and sticking them on card is immensely appealing! However as a variation on using magazines, you can use  tarot cards to create a vision or manifestation board.

Decide what you want to focus on. It could be just one thing or several. Go through your deck and find cards which represent your objectives. It doesn’t matter if the ones you choose don’t correspond to traditional meanings because this is personal to you.

Once you have selected a few cards to represent your goal or goals then either use the cards themselves or scan and print the images and arrange them on a piece of card. You could put the images in order of the steps that need to happen if you want. Add a few words too if you feel so inclined!

Example: If you would like to own a horse:

The Magician can represent your intention to create a bit of magic in your life. If you believe in the Law of Attraction, the magician is a great manifesting symbol and the downward pointing finger could be you saying “come on horsey – I want you here NOW!”

The Wheel of Fortune can symbolize your willingness to have the the  horse enter your life in an unexpected way. (Not falling from the sky we hope!)

The Sun shows the result – you are as happy as Larry on your beautiful horse, riding along under a sunny sky. What could be better? (I would use any extras to buy some riding clothes though, as it could get a bit chilly up there!)

3 Cooking up a Storm

Let me say right now that I am not the world’s best cook, but for those of you who are pretty cool in the kitchen then why not try some menu planning or recipe creation with the cards? The only proviso is that you have to make what you end up inventing. You never know, you could  end up with your own signature dish!

Draw three or four cards. My motto is that the tarot is always right and it is far more creative to try and use what you have got than to simply draw another card if you can’t see a blatant example of food in there. So start thinking laterally and see what food (or drink) you think of as you look at the card. Maybe the image reminds you a meal you once had or triggers a childhood association. If so, go with that! How could these combine in a dish? Maybe you already know the recipe or could improvise one? If all else fails you could make cup cakes and decorate them with symbols from the cards!

Example:

tarot-cooking-spread

The Hanged Man. Apart from the obvious associations with game (pheasant, venison etc) which is hung to give it flavour, I am actually drawn to the tree itself, which makes me think of nuts or grapes.

The Ten of Swords. The first thing that came to mind here was kebab skewers! When I was young in the 60s everyone in the UK used to serve cheese and pineapple on small skewers exactly like these and display them sticking in half a melon!

Queen of Wands. Sunflower seeds and sunflower oil are obvious associations, but weirdly the centre of the sunflowers reminds me of ginger biscuits.

Eight of Pentacles. The shape of this makes me think of flan dishes or even chocolate drops. In fact this whole thing has given me the idea for my recipe:

Pineapple and walnut cheesecake on a gingernut base decorated with chocolate drops. How about that!

The aim of this is not so much to get you actually doing these exercises (although I hope you do) as to show you how flexible and creative tarot cards are. They are just great for brainstorming. And we haven’t resorted to looking in a book or dying our hair purple to do it either!

Find Out More About Fiona…

fiona-tankardFiona Tankard is a professional writer and tarot consultant who has lived in Italy since 1994. She believes the tarot is a great practical tool for everything under the sun from mending your computer to writing a business plan. Her websites are www.tarotcanhelp.com and www.spiderywriting.com

{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa Frideborg Lloyd August 22, 2012 at 8:20 pm

Great post! I love this way of working with the cards and do it pretty much on a daily basis. It’s one of the reasons why I never run out of things to write about on my blogs. I also created a Tarot Vision board for 2012 and had lots of fun doing it. Creativity is where the Tarot really shines, allowing us to tap into the infinite possibilities provided by our super exciting Universe :) Thanks for sharing, Fiona and Biddy!

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Fiona Tankard August 23, 2012 at 12:52 am

Hi Lisa

Thank you so much for your kind comments. To me the Tarot is endlessly practical and I agree with your wonderful phrase: “Creativity is where the Tarot really shines.”

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Diana Cairns August 23, 2012 at 3:29 am

Hi Lisa and Fiona
I agree that the Tarot really shines when it comes to creativity.
I chose some special cards on Sunday with the idea of manifesting certain people or things to come into my life. One of the cards is The Empress, and I chose it because to me it suggests creativity and plant life. I stay in a studio unit where there is no garden at all, and I miss having a garden to care for.
I walked past a flower stall on Sunday and wished that I had the money to buy fresh flowers for my studio. The very next day a patient came in with a huge bunch of pink flowers to thank me for my help! They are the perfect colour for me at the moment and such a joy to come home to!
I honestly believe that the Tarot cards helped to manifest my desire for plants by bringing these beautiful flowers into my life :-)

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Fiona Tankard August 23, 2012 at 4:28 am

What a beautiful example of what Tarot can manifest. I am with you on the Empress signifying plants and creativity, I love that card!

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Aasheesh August 23, 2012 at 4:39 am

This post is another example of how Tarot can be used creatively for problem solving. Of course you have to take care that the readings are spaced out for a particular question.The vision board concept sounds great.Look forward to more such posts.
Aasheesh

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Fiona Tankard August 23, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Thank you so much Aasheesh.

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Marianne Quintinio August 23, 2012 at 11:09 am

I love it when you view Tarot cards to make food. The first time I look at the Hanged Man, Ten of Swords, Queen of Wands, and Eight of Pentacles, I usually thought of its spiritual interpretation. I might not be able to interpret Tarot cards the way you did if I only look at the cards at one set of lenses. Imagine food like Shish kebab, flan desserts, and let alone chocolate drops, can be the result of your creation just by looking at the cards, ! How creative is that! What I most admire on your blog is creating visual boards. I am a visual learner myself and appreciate objects that are pleasing in the senses and at the thoughts. Someday I’ll use your technique to boost up my confidence and energy level. Thank you for sharing all of these. May God bless you. . . :)

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Fiona Tankard August 23, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Hi Marianne

I agree, Tarot has infinite lenses. As you touched on I think it’s important to decide which one you are looking through in advance, but once you do theree a no limits.

Glad you liked the vision board, thank you!

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Leigh August 24, 2012 at 1:44 pm

Hi Fiona,

Awesome post. I love visiting this website. I get so many wonderful ideas from it. I really like the fresh perspective you have of using the cards creatively. Since I love to eat, I especially liked the suggestion about food! :-) The vision board was a close second. Thanks for the new ideas.

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Fiona Tankard August 24, 2012 at 3:29 pm

Hi Leigh

Thanks for your comment, let me know if you manage to create a magical meal using this technique!

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Jennifer August 27, 2012 at 10:09 pm

Hi Brigit…. i was just curious why does everyone think the Moon card is such a bad card? Yes it can be if its reversed and depending on the context and surrounding cards.. correct me if im wrong but this is what the Moon card means to me…
Intuition, using your intuition…dreams, loyalty (represented by the dog’s imagery) clairevoyance,.. the night is dark and things may be unclear but the moon shines light down to light the way and make hidden things and secrets visable,, its not as bright as the sun but in this sence does represent clairity and enlightenment using intuition..feminine mysteries, and the divine feminine..feminine magic and power gentle change made by ones own will,,change in general.. just to name a few things.this is only a small definition but u get the idea….Reversed,,,deception and lies, not seeing clearly,,cant see your path clearly,,obscurity, danger,not using intuition, loss of insight self deception and when apposed by swords hidden enemies, that are posing as friends and or lovers,,…. again correct me if im wrong…… Thanks lots of love and blessings,,,,,,,,Jennifer

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Brigit August 28, 2012 at 12:03 am

Hi Jennifer,
I believe that every card has a little ‘good’ and a little ‘bad’ in it. In fact, everything in life has a positive and a negative. It’s all very yin and yang. It isn’t really that there is something ‘bad’ about the negative side, but just something to be aware of.
When it comes to the Moon, it is about being aware of the subconscious mind, the subtle influences around us, etc. just as you have noted. Sometimes this can play in our favour, sometimes not (particularly if we are not aware of these influences). It’s really just a matter of shining the light on these hidden aspects.
Hope this helps,
Brigit

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Jennifer August 28, 2012 at 12:17 am

Yes Brigit,,, this helps alot… i am well aware and also take into account everything u have said about negative and positive and had it in mind when i wrote my post and in fact every card including the Sun card..which everyone says is the best card in the deck…yes its good but can mean to much of a good thing or to much of anything can burn u out…thank you again for your incredible insight….lots of love
Jennifer

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Fiona Tankard August 28, 2012 at 12:21 am

Hi Jennifer

As Brigit says, every card has a bit of good and bad in it, depending on the context of the other cards, but also your gut reaction when you see it in that spread on that day.

As a whole I tend to really like the Moon card actually, to me it speaks of imagination and mystery, our ‘wilder’ side and all the magical things the night offers in comparison with the day. I suppose it is a bit like that with night and day themselves, isn’t it? You can love the sunshine, but sometimes it can burn you and you may not be a fan of the dark but when moonlight shines on a lake – well, there’s nothing so beautiful…

Fiona

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Jennifer August 27, 2012 at 10:13 pm

P.s. sorry is this comment can be answered by Brigit or Fiona… im not sure if one or both are replying/blogging here….

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Johnny August 27, 2012 at 10:59 pm

Hi Fiona,
I always try to find ways to reactivate my creativity when I am having a ‘creative block'; Since I like to express myself in music, art, and writing. The cooking method with the Tarot cards as a cookbook is very fascinating. I shall try this when I want to be creative in cooking.

Thanks

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Fiona Tankard August 28, 2012 at 12:22 am

Thank you Johnny, I’m sure you’ll get some fantastic inspiration for your culinary creations from the cards!

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Kapeutini September 4, 2012 at 11:22 pm

I love your post and the idea to use tarot for those purpose.

My only concern is the respect given to the card :-) for me they are alive
so just before to do anything with them, I just talk to them inside me
gently with love and respect :-)

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Fiona Tankard September 5, 2012 at 12:05 am

Hi Kapeutini

Thank you for your sensitive comment. I completely agree as I have a very close connection with my cards too. But I do feel strongly that it is not disrespectful to play or to ask for help in everyday issues as well as do the big stuff. I view the tarot as a trusted old friend who always has my best interests at heart and you can usually talk to old friends about anything.

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Wanda September 18, 2012 at 4:12 am

Very inspiring article. I love your many uses for the Tarot. I draw my Vision Board with Tarot images.

Thank you for the article

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pam April 13, 2014 at 6:54 am

Very interesting article. I love using tarot to create stories as well as break through any creative blocks. I will have to play around with this regarding cooking.
Your tarot vision board is similar to how I utilize tarot with magic and spell work.

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Fiona Tankard August 26, 2014 at 8:12 pm

Thank you so much Arth. I think our muse responds well to any kind of attempts we make to tap into her mysteries. Tarot and other divination and introspection techniques all build up the intuitive muscles, as you say.

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