amazing illustrations of these cards show the wonderful
talents of Lisa Hunt, a very gifted artist. Through
her exceptional drawings, she breathes life into this
fascinating Tarot deck. The images are done in
pastel colorings surrounded by a blue border on each card
which portrays figures that are half animal and half human
. . . which represents the idea of "shapeshifting."
According to D. J. Conway and Sirona Knight, authors of the Shapeshifter Tarot book which comes with the cards, shapeshifting is the "assuming of a certain creature's characteristics, traits, and talents for a limited time." The full-length book included with the cards is a very useful tool, as it talks about the symbolism of each card and relates those symbols to the traditional tarot card.
There are three main themes
presented in this deck:
1) The public theme -- that of the shamanic practice of shapeshifting
2) The pantheon of Irish/Celtic Gods and Goddesses
3) The cycle of life and death, past and future, rebirth, and past and future knowledge
This is a deck that people usually either love . . . or don't like at all -- not a lot of "inbetween" I've noticed. The deck strays from tradition by using 81 cards instead of the standard 78, however, for those who like this deck, that is not a deterrent, but instead adds to the meanings and quality of the deck overall. The titles of the 3 new cards are among the Major Arcana and are: The Double; The Journey; and The Dreamer. These cards are explained in the book.
Excerpt from the back of the book:
"When you look at the world through other eyes and hear through other ears, you are changed. This is the power of the Shapeshifter Tarot: to broaden, deepen, transform you. To uncover traits, characteristics, potentials that have lain hidden until now. To awaken your connection with wind, water, earth, and every living thing."
"The Shapeshifter Tarot speaks a language your spirit knows. Listen to the messages it brings . . . and see all your life's pathways, possibilities, and dreams with a clearer vision."
quibble that I personally have with the deck is that it
uses the Swords-Fire association, whereas I prefer to see
the elements associated with Swords-Air and Wands-Fire
instead. However, if you are a reader who prefers
the Swords-Fire association, then this trait will likely
appeal to you. For those who are seeking a reading,
it's probably not going to matter one way or the other on
how the elements are presented in a Tarot Deck. As a
Tarot reader myself, I have not found this to be a problem
in reading these tarot cards -- it's something I can
overlook, considering how much I like the deck otherwise.
I tend to
prefer borderless decks, and I think this one would have
been even more stunning without the borders, but that is
only my opinion. I'm sure that some readers do like
having borders on the cards. I'm just not
crazy with the blue borders of this deck, but I don't let
that distract me from the beautiful work in this tarot deck.
If the imagery and ideas from the Shapeshifter deck are appealing to you, it's probably one you will "love" as a reader or a seeker.
Other decks by artist Lisa Hunt:
You can visit Lisa Hunt's website at: Lisa Hunt Art
Deck Details - Shapeshifter Tarot
Number of Cards in Deck:
81 (25 Major / 56 Minor)
Size of Cards: 2
3/4" x 4 5/8"
This deck is easy to handle and shuffle.
Included with deck: Full-size instruction book, 237 pages. A very useful tool for this deck.
Major Arcana: Initiation, Sorcerer, Sorceress, Mother,
Father, Knowledge, Lovers, Power, Courage,
Seer, Circle, Nature, Shapeshifter, Rebirth, Balance, Choice, Serpent, Star, Moon, Sun, Transcendence, Double (card 21), Journey (card 22), Dreamer (card 23), Oneness
Suit Names: Cups, Wands, Swords, Pentacles
Goddess (King), God (Queen), Warrior (Knight), Seeker
In this deck, the Goddess takes the "kingly" position in the court card family.
- Seeker = 11
- Warrior = 12
- God = 13
- Goddess = 14