No more eye strain!,
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This review is from: Tarot Illuminati: 78 full col cards & 64pp booklet (Paperback)
Having seen the larger kit version of these cards (which includes a full coloured book), the images, which I will add are beautiful and stunning, were so busy that it actually hurt my eyes a little and I had to squint to make heads or tails of what was going on in the card. This, along with the bright colour scheme, made using them in a reading a bit on the uncomfortable side. This "standard" version corrects this problem for me. The cards are smaller and the artwork isn't blown up, so there is more of the picture to see than in the kit version.
But the big factor that clenches it for me is that the artwork is slightly darker, which also makes the foreground and background "pop out" a little, making the cards more comfortable to view and easier to appreciate the art Erik Dunne worked so hard to produce. And the artwork doesn't suffer in the slightest in these smaller cards.
My only gripe with this version is that the card stock is a little on the flimsy side and easy to get marks on, especially on the backs of the cards when shuffling them. This unfortunately happened to me, but it was nothing a biro pen couldn't fix ;)
But on the whole this is a beautiful tarot deck and has quickly become one of my favourites. It's easy to see why the Tarot Illuminati is very popular with both experienced and novice readers. The decks' gorgeous imagery and symbolism is very similar to that of the world renowned Rider-Waite deck, with the exception that the Pages and Knights are replaced with Princesses and Princes, and The Magician is replaced with The Alchemist. But these differences are only small in the grand scheme of things.
The Minor Arcana's suits feature people from different cultures/time periods. Wands are Persian, Cups have a European/Fantasy feel to them, Swords are Elizabethan English and Pentacles have an Oriental setting. This diversity is a pleasant change to see when compared to most other tarot sets, and adds a certain charm to the Minors.
In conclusion, Tarot Illuminati is a beautiful deck and if you've been considering purchasing it, you won't be disappointed. But I would first compare both the kit and standard versions of the cards online to see if you would be comfortable with the brighter art of the kit version, as it is a lovely set to buy :)