Sunday, January 8, 2012

My Favorite Majors: The Empress

So, the Empress is definitely not one of the Major Arcana that I super relate with in any way. I'm not really much the mothering/nurturing type, either in desire to be mothered/nurtured nor in any desire to do aforementioned activities. Never have identified very much with traditional feminine roles or socially assigned female gender roles either instinctively or intellectually and...yeah. Which is not to say I have an real dislike/aversion/prejudice towards this card, per se, but...yeah, not one I feel very close to. That said, though, it wasn't hard to decide on my favorites for this one.

III. Empress

This card was seriously one of the main reasons why I became obsessed with getting my paws on a copy of Robert Place's Alchemical Renewed tarot, which took a while before it became a reality, but yeah. I love the art style of the whole deck, as well as its theme, but this card especially... Visually, I just love it. The lush, verdant green of the background, the way the figures are drawn..the colors. It just works for me. Also I think the combination of the flora and the child really represents the growth and nurturing aspects of this card. It makes perfect sense for the empress to be nude, in my mind and...I like the absence of wheat. I know that's a bit random, but the traditional RWS image and a lot of derivative decks have that in there and the correlation between a woman's body and harvest just...rubs me the wrong way. Call it my own issues with uh, yeah, thanks but just because I'm a woman doesn't make me a baby-making machine or whatnot, but there you have it. Also why cards with pregnant ladies, while perfectly appropriate symbolically, don't super work for me personally. But yeah, artistically especially, I just find this such a beautiful Empress card.

Runner Up: 
I also really like this one. Like the rest of the Nusantara deck, I love the colors, the art style, the figure and the clothes and all that. What I really like about it though is that it sticks pretty closely to the traditional RWS take of the card - which honestly, I rather like the arrangement of - while getting rid of all the aspects I liked less. I love all the green with the right amount of red/orange/yellow highlights - a perfect color scheme for this card. No wheat, no pomegranate dress, but familiar, comfortable. Basically it really nicely brings to mind the meanings of this card for me without bringing up icky gender issue touchiness and yeah. It's pretty :]


Anonymous said...

I very much hear you on the not-being-the-motherly type and the can't-relate-to-a-physical-fertility-focused-concept-of-womanhood things! I feel exactly the same (which may not be a surprise since my "birth cards" are the Fool and Emperor).

The Nusantara Empress has gorgeous, gorgeous colors, although I would have liked her even better if the blue/turquoise of her dress was another green.

My favorite Empress is the one from the World Spirit Tarot. I guess one might consider her pregnant but to me she's just well-rounded. I think she manages to be luscious and authoritative and relaxed at the same time.

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