Soul Cards

On a holiday to Sarasota Florida in March of 96, I found myself in the one of the town’s local new age stores, hoping to take advantage of the great selection of decks they had in stock. To my delight, they had open demo decks of all their stock. I had no idea what I really wanted, so I grabbed quite a few and sat down on the floor to go through them all. After looking at about 15 decks and not finding anything that really grabbed me, I spotted on a shelf close to the floor a deck called Soul Cards. I knew right away that this was not a Tarot deck, but decided to take a look anyway because the image on the outside of the box intrigued me. Inside were 60 beautiful cards, done in some form of art I have never seen before. I noticed right away there were no numbers, titles or writing of any kind on the cards, just the image. I knew instinctively this was the purchase I wanted to make and headed for the cash register. I haven’t been disappointed since and have had many wonderful hours of use and creative adventure.
The Soul Card deck was created by Deborah Koff-Chapin using a technique called touch painting. Briefly, touch painting is a process where paint is applied to glass then paper is laid over the glass. The artists then use their fingers to draw on the paper and it picks up paint from the glass underneath it. The images have a very mysterious quality about them and most are of people or beings of some kind. They are really very beautiful. So now I have a deck of beautiful images, what was I going to do with a totally unstructured deck? The small booklet that comes with the cards gives some suggestions on what you could use them for, from reflection, divination, or dream incubation to silent contemplation and visualization.
I decided to just play and see if I could at least name some them. I took the cards, a notebook and pen and headed for Siesta Key beach. Sitting on the energizing gulf coast of Florida, I shuffled my Soul cards for the first time and picked a card at random.
The image was of a human-type being with light all around the face, like a bright sun and it was holding out cupped hands with more rays of light coming out from the chest and spilling into the hands. “I give you light” popped instantly into my mind and I had named my first card. I wrote down the name and then how the card made me feel. I went on to name some more.
This is a very creative deck. If you like to write, it will inspire you on flights of fantasy or spiritual awareness. If you like to hold an image in your mind while falling asleep to help you on your way to the land of dreams, this deck is for you. If you want to do a free flow, totally intuitive card reading, this deck is a very very good choice. I took it to the CTN’s first year convention in Carlton a couple of years ago. One very intuitive member, Ellen did an awesome reading for me using my Soul Cards. She had never seen the deck before.
It is amazing what information comes to light as you lay out one card and ask your client or yourself what comes to mind from the image. It is a good idea to take notes in detail and record all your work with this deck, because if your forget any insights you gathered, you can’t go back to any book for a general meaning of the card. The deck works well with any Tarot spread, but is especially good when you read very organically, free-designing a spread as you go for the specific issue you are exploring. It also works well to draw just one card as a focus for a reading using a more traditional deck.
You can find Soul Cards in many stores that carry decks as well as at the Centre for Touch Drawing on the web at Here you can view the cards and other touch art. Soul Cards 2 has recently been published and Deborah’s web site features instruction videos and kits for doing touch drawing yourself as well as the cards. You can even send a virtual Soul Card to a friend from this site.
I have come to love this deck (and look forward to getting Soul Cards 2) and though I have used it more as a personal exploration tool, I did once have dreams of doing a large portion of my client readings with it. I am still holding that dream. So if you are looking for something to stretch your intuitive capabilities, I highly recommend this deck of cards. At the least you will have a deck of unique and lovely images and at the other end of the scale you may have a life long companion to spark your most creative urges.

© copy right 2011 by Bella Lori Gagnon
all rights reserved

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