Breaking Through the Creative Barriers with the Lefty Oracle deck created by Kathy Crabbe | Deck review

Happy Monday! I am hopefully spending this week in the art studio! Luckily it will only be dependent on time, (and off grid chores) not artist block this time. Which is really nice. Last week I was up against a bit of a creative wall, and am so happy to have found this new tool to help me battle through these blocks. I couldn't have asked for better timing to have gotten this new deck!

I’m really excited to show you this fun and inspiring oracle deck today! This one is perfect for those of you who may suffer from creative blocks like I do. 

My last review featured some darker themes, and this one is what feels like on the opposite of the spectrum. I just love having such duality in my collection. This deck holds a very light and playful energy to it.. and I know you will love as much as I do!

The Lefty Oracle by Kathy | Review by Rachael Caringella

The Lefty Oracle

The Lefty Oracle Deck is a whimsical 54 card oracle deck created by Kathy Crabbe. The deck comes in a white box with a downloadable full color PDF guidebook. This deck was created entirely with Kathy's non-dominant hand! Each card features a playful fanciful character to guide you deep into your subconscious.

This deck made me giggle out loud as I flipped through the cards. It is bursting with playful childlike energy that I was desperately needing!

Deck Title: The Lefty Oracle

Creator: Kathy Crabbe

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About the Deck and Creator: 

"The Lefty Oracle Deck and 92 page Guidebook will help you break through creative blocks, identify your gifts and empower your intuition so you can move forward in a playful and profoundly life changing way.”

Kathy is a soul-reader and professional artist and creator. Aside from being a full time creative, she also offers classes and workshops. There is even a special class just for this deck!  She is also living in a hand-built house (built by her own hands!) surrounded by desert and forest. Her and I chatted a bit and it turns out we have quite a bit in common, and I've got tons to learn from her! She truly lives life creatively and is an inspiration.

(Read more about Kathy here

The Lefty Oracle by Kathy Crabbe | Review by Rachael Caringella

first impressions:

I giggled and laughed as I looked through each card! My initial impression of this deck was love at first sight. It's so fun to work with and the energy is just so refreshing. 

Something about the art is thought provoking enough that it makes you stop and really notice the beauty and message in the details. 

I absolutely love the white minimal background and the simple handwritten/hand stamped words. The simplicity makes for great self interpretation.

The deck is so playful and raw. Just flipping through it, I can tell it holds tons of healing opportunities as well... and I hadn't even gotten to the guidebook yet!

Size: 3.5'' x 5.75'' Larger than typical Tarot Cards

Number of Cards: 54 cards, with 2 "Mantra Cards"

The card's stock is 300 gsm, which probably doesn't mean much to most people, but this is the standard stock for most card decks. Which makes them on the thin side but proves to be a positive thing as the thin stock helps make shuffling the larger cards easier. No complaints here. The size of the deck is perfect for the artwork on it.

The Lefty Oracle by Kathy Crabbe | Review by Rachael Caringella

The doodles and drawings are so unique and fun. Each card is pleasantly unexpected and surprising. Like I mentioned, the entire deck was created with Kathy's left hand! This makes the movements and gestures raw, authentic and channeled straight from the most creative part of Kathy's brain. Brilliant.

When I was little, I broke my left hand, and my left wrist, so I've always had a hard time even holding a pencil with my left hand. I even got kicked off the Steel Drum club in jr high because I couldn't roll my left wrist. I still really can't. 

But in art class, I used to practice drawing left handed. I actually got pretty good! But working with Kathy's deck made me realize that getting "good" at left handed drawings isn't really the point. Working with the non-dominant hand holds so much more creative potential than that. 

The Lefty Oracle by Kathy Crabbe | Review by Rachael Caringella
The Lefty Oracle by Kathy Crabbe | Review by Rachael Caringella

guidebook and box

The deck comes in a simple white tuck box with a window to display the card backs. 

There are 2 mantra cards included with the deck, and a downloadable pdf guidebook. 

While the cards are great for self interpretation, I would recommend the guidebook for sure! The guidebook lists several unique suggestions for working with the deck.

The guidebook is 92 pages with each card’s interpretation and meaning, as well as expressive body movement challenges, non-dominant hand excercsises and other helpful insights you can use to fully embrace each card. I especially love each character’s song.

My favorite thing about having a digital guidebook is that I will never lose it! My phone is always with me, so I can always carry the wisdom of these cards with me. If I’m ever out of the house, and want to remember a part of my reading I don’t have to go home to learn more.

the CARDS

The Lefty Oracle is heartwarmingly silly, raw and truthful. This deck was designed to stimulate your intuitive abilities as well as wake up your creative self... and you can really feel it by just flipping through the cards! 

This deck is actually very versatile. It can be used for regular readings for clients or yourself, but it is also an affirmation deck and a story telling deck! There are so many possiblities with this deck.

This deck would be great for writing groups, Moon circles and artist prompts just to name a few. The guidebook even has creative prompts for making your own deck or working in your journal. 

 
The Lefty Oracle by Kathy Crabbe | Review by Rachael Caringella
 
The Lefty Oracle by Kathy | Review by Rachael Caringella

What is different about this deck is that each card features a character. It’s almost like a deck full of court cards... but so much easier to read.

Court Cards can be a bit intimidating, this deck however is not. The messages are gentle but still bold.

Each card is unique and empowering. The cards are simple, yet intricate. I love how some cards offer an empowering phrase, while some are silly and some are left blank. This leaves so much to self interpretation and self reflection.

The left handed drawings are delightful to look at. Working with and even looking at art from the non-dominant hand offers us a fresh perspective. It causes us to see things differently.

I pulled a reading for myself and decided to follow the prompts in the guidebook when it came to creative journaling. I gave left handed art a go again... and loved the results.

    

It was so much fun working left handed again! Like I said I used to push myself to do left handed work in school. But this experience was different because I had a newer perspective than the last time I tried.

I really had to try to "loosen up" this time.

I started with the fox, (a trickster aspect inspired by the Carolee Card) but soon had to remind myself that it didn't have to be perfect. I moved onto the little tree gal in the corner, and again had to remind myself to not get sucked into the need for perfection.. by the time I was scribbling in those aspens, and flames  I knew what my affirmation from the reading was going to be. (I apparently give too many foxes and need a good reminder.)

Working with this deck was like a breath of fresh air. This process inspired some new ideas for the future, and brought up a lot of past memories. Reminding myself to draw with my left hand felt healing for my own inner child as I finally did let loose. The reading and creative journal prompt helped me realize quite a bit about myself!

I love combining tarot and oracle cards with my art and art journaling. I'm thinking I may use this deck for my next segment in Pull Pen Paint!

This definitely will be one of my go-to decks to break past creative blocks! 

It's also a great deck for self readings. I don't know about you, but I have a hard time reading for myself. Sometimes even with my own decks! I love how much you can interpret this deck on your own, but I also love all of the additional ideas the guidebook has to offer.

This deck makes for a great tool for anyone wanting to get to know themselves on a deeper level, break down creative walls, and feel empowered while doing so. The deck is a soothing one, created to awaken your intuition and stir your creativity in a gentle manner.

Photo Credit: Lori Ann Beach

Photo Credit: Lori Ann Beach

  

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Interested in having your deck reviewed? Email me here!

Rachael Caringella

I am an Artist, Mystic and Oracle. I have been creating since I was little, and am constantly working on something new in the studio. I also have a passion for illustration. I have illustrated a few children's books as well as some Tarot decks and Oracle decks. Aside from creating art, I am also a card reader. I specialize in Tarot and Crystal readings. I love all things mystic, and spiritual and I delight in the mixture of creation and intuition.

Tarot Restless - A deck for the unafraid | A Deck Review

Happy Mercury-Is-Finally-The-F***-Out-of-Retrograde! This last one was killer wasn't it? Lots of break downs and lessons for me over here. Plus, it seemed like it took forever to get just basic simple things done this last month. Hopefully things begin to go more smoothly as we get out of the shadow period over these next few weeks! I've got lots planned for the blog and the art shop!

As a deck creator and artist, I love to explore the creative works of other artists who create Tarot and Oracle decks. I'm beginning a new series on the blog dedicated to reviewing and showing off other self published and indie decks. I couldn't be more excited to share this dark beauty with you today.

The Tarot Restless

Deck Title: The Tarot Restless

Creator: Winslow Dumaine 

About the deck: 

"The Tarot Restless is a unique tarot deck set within a morbid fantasy universe in the midst of an infertility apocalypse. The deck consists of 78 original, hand-drawn illustrations printed on silver-gilded cards, packaged in a rigid two-part box. The accompanying text, Restless Meditations, includes a short story, new interpretations, and new functions for each card.

I believe people should explore their suffering. Understanding the causes of pain is key to growth – if you suffer, and do not learn, you will have suffered for nothing. In creating this deck, I took my experiences with heartbreak, abuse, and betrayal, and retold them on a cosmological scale.

Many cards were inspired by the strong women in my life. Their struggles with abuse and violence helped me understand the abuse I suffered much better, and I cannot thank them enough."

(Read more here!) 

First Impressions:

My first initial impression of this deck was absolute love at first sight... You know me, and how I love darkness, and dark art. I'm a part of several online tarot communities, and I swear we are all looking for the perfect dark deck. I'm very excited to get to share this deck!

Each card is beautifully morbidly dark. There is something new to see on each card with every reading. This deck is a must on your list if you love dark surrealistic art that is full of depth and symbolism.

I connected with this deck immediately. Which isn’t always the case with new decks! I shuffled this deck and immediately felt what I can my “reiki hands” or hand chakras activate. 

I love it when you can tell an artist know's their shit behind each card. It's not just pretty artwork to sell a deck. There is so much tasty intention behind each card. 

This deck does stray from the traditional Rider Waite Smith deck, so I would recommend reading the guidebook to get to know the story behind this deck.

This deck is set in a post-apocalyptic fantasy world, where Demigods that were once worshiped, have set a curse of infertility that gradually spread across the land causing panic, war, and general upheaval. The dwindling human race is given the gift of immortality by the demons that had once tormented them. Not able to bring new life in, or pass onto death, the human race is torn between the old ways or accepting the favor of their old adversaries. There is quite a bit of nudity in this deck, so I would definitely recommend bringing it to work for readings during lunch break. ;)

The card's stock and thickness is perfect and the deck shuffles like a dream.

It appears the drawings were done with pen and ink, a medium I always love to both use and see. I love all the little lines and details in each illustration. 

Umm also... The flash on the edge of this deck is pretty incredible. I love shiny things, and my camera did this justice. Look at that silver shine.  

Guidebook And Box

The deck comes in it's own little box that matches the deck in size and design perfectly. The lack of words on the box make it perfect for storing it out on my shelf in my tarot space. (Instead of placed in a pretty bag cause the box was made so cheap!)

As much as I could probably try to interpret the cards on my own based on their beautiful symbolism and imagery, the guidebook is golden when it comes to fully understanding and interpreting a reading. 

Winslow takes a unique approach with the guidebook by turning the card meanings into parts of the major story in the guidebook.

While the guidebook does offer quick glance keywords and summaries, I wouldn’t recommend skipping over the story part. Story telling offers valuable lessons. Plus, because these cards do slightly stray from the traditional Tarot, it would be worth it! 

The guidebook is included with the deck and there is talk that it will fit inside the box in the newest edition. 

The Major Arcana

There are twenty two Major Arcana cards like in Traditional Tarot, but there are some differences in both names and meanings. The changes are made to more fully express the chaotic nature of the universe; the new cards highlight loss, despair, doom, but also vitality, regeneration, inner strength and peace. 

The Moon | The Tarot Restless |

The Major Arcana may stray a bit from the original tarot but that doesn’t mean they miss an archetype. The cards are rich in symbolism and the messages are, (to me anyways) quite easy to interpret. 

I loved the Moon Card and connected with this one right away. I even drew it in my first reading. I drew it inverted, which was a sign of cleverness, escpape and nighttime journeys, which was all too accurate given my sleep patterns and dream memories as of late.

This is a card of renewal and second chances, but the true meaning of the card wasn't felt until I read the story aspect in the guidebook. It really shined a new light on what was going on for me, while adding new perspective that previous Moon cards have not held. 

 

The Minor Arcana's

The minor arcana cards are all fully illustrated with unique detailed illustrations and back stories. 

The ace cards, along with a card known as the Void, represent the creation and destruction aspects of the cosmos on a whole, while the number cards will signify several different forces, people and phenomena within the universe.

The suits are Swords, Wands, Cups and Stars, which read the same as the traditional Tarot, except Stars is generally called the pentacle suit, though the suits carry some varied meaning as well. 

Swords signify power, dedication extremity, longevity and division. Seeing a large amount of swords in a reading may mean conflict is rising. 

Wands signify will power, attunment, family illumination, and esoteric knowledge. A large number of wands may mean a great amount of will power and work will be needed ahead.

Cups signify wealth, bounty, practical knowledge sustenance, sacrifice, and memory. A large amount of cups may mean a new discovery of great importance may be coming to the reader. 

Stars signify protection, ritual, duty, eternity, the outer-cosmos and kinship. A large amount of Stars could mean a large ending taking place in your life that brings both satisfaction and disappointment. 

The Court Cards 

The court cards are also a bit unique and stray a tad bit from the typical court cards. Rather than pointing to people in the world, they represent expressions of the values within the suit. 

The Thrall card depicts a lack of an aspect within their suit. The Knight is representational of having attained the satisfaction of this want or desire, the Queen protects it and refines it to perfection, and the King demonstrates the significance and importance of the attainment. 

I love that suffering and darkness is something that is accepted in this deck. I agree that we should explore our suffering, and shine some light on the darkness.

Without suffering there is no growth.

When I'm in a dark place, I don't (and can't) just jump to the happiest thing I can think of. I sometimes have to turn on the most depressing music I can think of, because it at least will meet me in the darkness. Not push me to feel a certain way.. but meet me and sit with me. I feel very similar with this deck. When I'm in a dark place, I need something that will meet me in my darkness, sit with me there, and let me fumble for the light myself. I think dark decks are important. Understanding our pain, and feeling our pain is important for our highest growth. 

The reason I love Tarot and Oracle cards is because they can help give us direction in our lives that me may have not been able to see. Decks that honor darkness, like The Tarot Restless, are to me, crucial when it comes to meeting those dark aspects of ourselves we might be hiding from! You've got to feel things in order to heal them. 

Interested in having your deck reviewed? Email me here!

Rachael Caringella

I am an Artist, Mystic and Oracle. I have been creating since I was little, and am constantly working on something new in the studio. I also have a passion for illustration. I have illustrated a few children's books as well as some Tarot decks and Oracle decks. Aside from creating art, I am also a card reader. I specialize in Tarot and Crystal readings. I love all things mystic, and spiritual and I delight in the mixture of creation and intuition.