Instant Archetypes

Deck Name: Instant Archetypes Deck: A New Tarot for the New Normal
Creator(s): Superflux and Amélie Barnathan
Publisher & Year: Superflux, 2018

I had never backed a deck on Kickstarter until I saw the Instant Archetypes deck campaign launch. I knew that I just had to have this deck when it came out, the imagery spoke to me instantly (no pun intended). Between the vibrant, yet delicate watercolor illustrations, the thin modern uppercase font and the border with a line of x’s was right up my alley. When it arrived, I was not disappointed at all… I may have screamed a tiny bit when I opened up the box.

My only concern when backing this deck was the size of the cards and the fact it was a majors only deck. Those issues quickly faded when I had a chance to look through the cards imagery. The size of the cards really allow the illustrations to breath a bit more and bring more focus to the vibrant colors.  Of course I would still love a full 78-card deck but I’m quite happy with this deck as it is!

The artist of the Instant Archetypes, Amélie Barnathan, quickly became an inspiration for my own watercolor work. I adore her color palette that she works with and the soft feel of her illustration style, it’s stunning! I would love to fill my walls with her art!

The cards are a bit larger and measure roughly at: 3.75” x 5.5”.


As always, it’s so hard to pick a favorite so I decided to let the deck decide for me with some random draws! All of the cards are so uniquely done and all feature things that I love. The Whistleblower is a really interesting take on the Hermit. In the guide it mentions that secrets lose their power when they are shared, that really grabbed me with this card. I don’t feel like it lines up with the traditionally meaning of the Hermit, at least not to me. I get more of a “how much longer can you keep something hidden” type of feeling, like you are bound to break silence.

Another interesting card is the Researcher, more commonly known as the High Priestess. This take on the High Priestess gives me that feeling that anything is at reach, you just have to know where to look. It’s very intuitive when it comes to tapping into your own well of knowledge and sacred studies.


These cards are quite thick, but in a good way and not so much in a stiff “cardboard” way. They have some bend to them and they also feel like they will hold up well over time, though I do worry about dirt showing up on them. The cardstock is a bright, crisp white and tends to pick up the smallest of marks due to the cardstock type, which is hard to explain other than the fact they feel really nice! I’m not complaining one bit as I think the cards feel great in my hands, it’s just a little worry I have. Usually I don’t mind a deck getting worn and dirty, but this deck feels so crisp that I would like to preserve that as much as possible.

Since they are larger cards, shuffling is a tad tricky even for my long fingers though it was easy to adjust. The deck shuffles smooth and well!


The imagery in the Instant Archetypes is very modern, yet surreal. It’s very dreamy but also very relatable. The deck itself feels more like an oracle deck than a tarot deck, but I can still pick up the tarot vibes when working with it easily. All the traditional card titles have been changed to new ones – The Magician is now The Hacker, The Chariot is now The Drone, and so on. The name switches make a lot of sense and still hold that energy of the original cards very well. The imagery has a lot of room in there for personal interpretation!


The Instant Archetypes deck comes with a page folded guide that features a few keywords for each card, followed by a short paragraph and some other deck info. I like that the interpretations are not generic and that they’re specific to this deck. Nothing frustrates me more than for indie decks to not include any info about the cards or even a guide in the first place. I’m so glad they included this little pocket guide!

The box matches the deck and feels like it’s made of the same cardstock as the deck itself, which is pretty nice. For as simple as the box is, I quite like it.


I’ve been working with this deck since it arrived after Christmas and it brings me joy everytime I pull it off my shelf. The cards read really well and are a breath of fresh air to use when I’m feeling stuck in a tarot rut.

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