I grabbed the Shadowscapes Tarot deck at my local bookstore when I was first getting into tarot. My only other deck was a Marseilles Style deck that my mom had given me, but I kept reading about the Rider Waite Smith style decks. I wanted a deck that had images on all 78 cards. You can pick it up here on Amazon as local stores are carrying fewer tarot decks in stores now a days.
I would definitely recommend this deck for a beginner as this deck can have a story told with all of the cards. Although it does not follow the imagery of the Rider Waite Smith (RWS) deck, it does have enough imagery to be able to understand the meaning of each card. The images are the artists rendition of the RWS meanings of the cards.
The card stock that it comes on is the thickest of all the decks that I have so far. It is sturdy and can withstand a lot of shuffling. As I said, I used this deck as my main deck for months. Using it daily and it only has shown minor amounts of wear. The main area where I see wear is on the edges from frequent shuffling.
The imagery on the cards is water colored and the artists rendition of what the cards mean to her. I fell in love with the imagery and how it wasn’t human focused like the RWS deck, this had more animals, mermaids, dragons and even a unicorn! It gave me more of a nature feel. This deck doesn’t have the fun/childish look that some decks can have. It feels very adultish, but dreamy at the same time. Some have said this deck makes them get a little lost in the imagery of the cards, but after a while they find it easy to use.
Below are some of my favorite cards from the deck.
The Shadowscapes Book
The book that comes with cards is a hefty book sporting about 250 pages has all of the images and the descriptions of the cards along with the meanings. The meanings do have to be extracted out of the story of some of the cards, but without the story you may not really understand what the artist was thinking when she created the cards.
Each card has a story and the meaning which gives you a deeper look into how each card was made. Each story is more of a stand alone story than part of a larger story. Unlike the RWS deck where you have a story that you can follow with the minor arcana.
Shadowscapes Keywords Cheat Sheet
If you are having trouble with some of the cards, I have created a cheat sheet with the keywords from the book to help you out. Enter your e-mail below to grab the cheat sheet