You can read an introduction to the light & shadow series and find links to its other installments >> here! If you aren’t yet familiar with my interpretation of the Clouds you might want to read up on its meanings before you continue with this article.
The Clouds are among the few cards which I found nearly impossible to interpret positively, because unproductive, negative, issues and goings-on are such an integral part of their meaning. The Clouds represent unproductive, negative things like confusion and despair, misunderstandings, a painful lack of guidance, boredom and listlessness. These are all intrinsically unpleasant and without context also decidedly negative.
But if we add some context there are surprisingly positive, productive potentials hidden within this negative card’s meanings. Boredom, for example, can indeed be very unpleasant. And while we are still bored there is nothing productive about it. But often it is only extreme boredom that enables us to finally think outside the box, shake off our fetters, become truly creative, innovative. Sometimes we only manage to pick ourselves up and change things for the better because we are desperate enough. So that is what the Clouds may be hinting at: That we need to go through this unpleasant phase of boredom or despair, because only this extreme unpleasantness will motivate us to turn things around thoroughly in the end.
Yes, misunderstandings, and lack of guidance, are in themselves negative, that is obvious. But if you draw the Clouds in a context where you have been wondering why there are so many conflicts, or why things keep feeling wrong or going awry, the Clouds’ indication of misunderstandings, their hint at a lack of guidance, might well be exactly what you needed to hear to start solving your problem. You can then go and find out what misunderstanding is causing or at least contributing to the conflicts, and once you have identified it you can solve it. You can go and find the type of guidance you need in order to feel more confident, or in order to not constantly go wrong anymore.
In short: While they hardly represent anything that is positive in and by itself, the Clouds sometimes still help us see how we can turn a negative situation into a positive one. Sometimes, drawing the Clouds is the beginning of a problem’s solution.