I mention The Empress in Podcast 008 and how someone might point to the pillow she’s leaning against and ask how comfort and ease fit into the answer.
That same questioner could have asked about the river in the background, or the trees, or the shield in the foreground. However, in a reading, we don’t, or don’t have to, deal with or explain everything in the picture. In many ways, the details in the illustration don’t matter that much when answering someone’s question.
On the other hand, when there is a definite contrast between two cards, then we can pay attention and see what we make of it.
The Empress is sitting in a cultivated garden; the Page of Batons, by contrast, is in a desert area. We might normally ignore the background with The Empress, but here it can give some information.
The Page of Batons is isolated; The Empress may be on her own, but we can see how there is support or backroom staff that she can depend on. Not so with the Page of Batons.
The Empress knows she has helpers, or staff, or associates who will come forward when needed. The Page of Batons is in a very different situation – there being nobody ‘in the background’ so to speak.
We may not pay much attention to factors like this when viewing a card on its own; but we can see importance when looking at more than one card at a time.
My book on Solving Money Problems Through The Tarot is coming soon.