(2016), pencil on paper, 5.5"x10.5" backed with digital frame.
The court cards are leaving space for a number of interpretations in a spread. Often they are read as actual people having an impact on the querent's life, who share characteristics of the element they are associated with and hold a certain social or familial "rank". However, they can also be aspects of the querent's personality that either define him or her or that are currently suppressed.
The Rider Waite deck shows us an elegantly dressed young man standing before a low flowing river holding a golden cup in his hand that has a fish rising up out of it. In the Thoth deck a green-skinned woman in a wide, flowing gown that obscures her figure and takes up nearly the entire card dances on slow-moving waves of water and holds a bowl-like cup with a turtle in it in her arms. Behind her back leaps a fish and above her head a flying swan rises up.
For my own card I wanted to connect the suite of Water back to a people that has mastered the ocean like no other. People of Polynesian descent have crossed the Pacific from New Zealand all the way to Hawaii and Rapa Nui and settled island after island venturing further and further out without the help of sextants or a compass or any of the other tools that Western seafarers relied on when they first navigated those waters. For the traditional page I chose a Maori girl in a traditional feather dress wearing a hei matau, a fishhook pendant which gives the wearer safe travels across water.
In a spread the Daughter of Water signifies a sensitive, dreamy and creative young woman, who is very much in touch with her feelings and possesses great empathy and intuition when it comes to other people. She can be a good listener and will be sympathetic to the needs of others. At her best she is gentle, gracious and imaginative. When she fails she can come over as detached from reality, lost in fantasies and day-dreams and easily hurt by the harsh realities of everyday life.
For a relationship-related question the card may indicate you are taking a current relationship deeper and becoming more sensitive to each others' needs. It may also mean that a new love is coming into your life, someone with a young heart, who is imaginative, perhaps a little too eager to view the relationship through rose-tinted glasses, but who is willing to take emotional risks.
If the card comes up for a business-related question it could mean that you are not in the most practical frame of mind to make pragmatic decisions or to think in terms of profit and loss. However, the card may urge you to listen to your gut when it comes to subtle influences or to look for opportunities where someone offers advice or where you have the ability to serve others and help them achieve their dreams.
If the card stands for yourself and not someone else it urges you to connect with your more sensitive side. Explore your dreams and creative ideas. Surround yourself with beauty and harmony and seek out like-minded people who "get" you. Don't be afraid to show affection, listen to others and find ways to cheer them up and make their lives better.
If the card is uncovered in an adverse or blockage position it could mean that you are stuck with your head in the clouds and lost in a fantasy world. You may be overly sensitive, sentimental and naive and others could take advantage of the fact that you tend to be too dependent on their help and their opinion of you. There is a tendency to put a romantic interest on a pedestal to the point where they can't help but break your heart. You could also be so conflict-averse that you become a door-mat, just to placate and please everybody.
That was a mistake!