Essence: Ace of Swords


Hello everyone, and welcome to Spirit Song Art, for the International Tarot Day Blog Hop! <3  I trust you’ve been enjoying the ride, and you probably got here from Kriss Lumsden’s article on the Queen of Cups. Welcome, welcome! Pull up a cushion and get comfy. 🙂

Brief introduction! My name is Brandy Woods. Illustrator, Reiki healer, shamanic practitioner, spirit and soul artist… I’m originally from Louisiana but I’ve been living near Montreal in Canada for the past 7 years. 🙂  I do channeled artwork, among other things, so I figured the best way for me to proceed with the Ace of Swords would be to channel an image of its essence for you all. To start with, I went through a few of my decks and pulled my favorite representations of the card from each of them to use as a ‘focus’. I do this with crystals sometimes for my soul portraits.




From left to right, my inspirations: the Ace of Swords from the Shadowscapes Tarot, Norse Tarot, and the Starchild Tarot.






I put myself into a mentally clear, meditative state, lighting incense and going with an intuitive pick of what Spirit preferred I use as mediums for this particular piece, to best enhance its energies. In this case, it was eggshell-colored pastel paper, and pastels. I focused in on the energy of the three ‘sample’ cards, and began to draw.

When I channel artwork, I will sometimes seem images in my mind’s eye to be drawn, and sometimes I will even ‘see’ them on the paper directly. It’s a very spontaneous, intuitive process, and I never plan anything beforehand, so it’s always a surprise what’s going to come out of my pencil! I also never erase, even if I make a ‘mistake’; erasing seems distrustrful of Spirit, and sometimes ‘mistakes’ are precisely the lessons we need to learn, or the path we need to take.

9 x 12″ pastels on paper | © Brandy Woods 2017


Essence: The Ace of Swords stands for the great, unspoken potential of a new beginning. (New beginnings, too, must always come from the ending of something, even if that something is perceived as negative…) Its power can be used to ‘cut’ either way, for good or for ill, and it is up to the bearer to find a way to use the power of the intellect for the greater good. As with the weapons of old, bravery is called for. Perhaps you need courage to start a new business or new relationship. Perhaps you need courage to stand up for a cause you believe in. Truth. Justice. Fortitude. Mental force. Clear understanding. A challenge. Look for situations that could use resolving, and begin the steps to take care of them now. Reversed, it can stand for lack of clarity or uncertainty about your goals. Having clouded judgement and missing out on information that might be pertinent to you — take the time to consider your decisions more carefully, and if you can, get an objective viewpoint from someone you trust!


I hope you all have been enjoying this blog hop! Please see Oephebia’s Tarot Academy at for the next amazing blog in the hop. Thank you for reading! <3

Incidentally, the original of this piece – 9 x 12″ on pastel paper – is available for purchase for 90$ USD plus shipping. Drop me a note if interested! <3


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