How to read Kipper cards: Storyboarding

Now that we’ve got all the basic card meanings covered, it is time to actually put them to work. If you come from a Lenormand background, the system will make some sense to you. Those who have focused exclusively on Tarot however, or those with no prior knowledge of cartomancy in general, will need a few pointers to get them going. Still, this is by no means a reason to get discouraged or, worse still, quit. Quite the contrary. Kipper is a comparatively easy and intuitive system which connects to the way our brain naturally forms thoughts and weaves stories.

These cards, much like most continental European fortune-telling systems, are designed to be read in large layouts. Pulling just one or two cards is not likely to give you a good enough answer simply because the individual images carry with them but a small range of meanings and are not suitable for deep philosophical thought. Their true power becomes obvious once they are combined into a Line of seven, a 3×3 spread, or the Grand tableau. Like pearls on a string, they begin to shine and come alive with meaning.

It is thus best to observe Kipper as a kind of storyboard, a series of pictures, each depicting a small but key part of the plot. Storyboarding itself is a very unesotheric method that was developed at Walt Disney Productions during the early 1930’s. The idea facilitated the outlining of the plot of a movie to be made and helped everyone involved understand the ultimate artistic goal more easily. This ease of comprehension is precisely what makes Kipper such a pragmatic system, one so similar to storyboarding in Hollywood.

Each image appearing in your spread is thus treated as a small part of the fable, a situation or a person that interacts with the images that come before as well as after it. All of these are supposed to seamlessly flow into one another, enriching each other’s meanings, forming a coherent whole and telling us a story. Each image is observed as a quick snapshot of the situation and the pictures together form a glimpse into the current state of things and into what is likely to transpire.

It takes a bit of effort, some imagination and, of course, a bit of intuition to get you going but the method is far from difficult. It connects very well with the way our mind naturally works and relies on a mechanism that we are already using in our daily lives whenever we try to describe an event that we have witnessed or a plan that we have. Imagine that you are telling a bedtime story to a young child. It is as simple as that. Apply the same playful and straighforward method to Kipper, put several cards in line and see what kind of story you can come up with. It’s literally that easy.