How to get unstuck and love life again

Date: June 15th, 2022, Posted by cassandra

Most of us probably agree that enjoying what we do is essential to achieving big things. It’s pretty hard to succeed at something that bores you or drives you mad. But in the same breath, we can also acknowledge another truth: sometimes, work is just painful. I mean, it’s work, right. By definition, it’s something we have to do.

We’ve all had that sinking feeling that we’re reinventing the wheel or spinning in circles. We’ve struggled while hunting for inspiration, trying to remember what we love or the things that spark joy. We’ve worked hard on a project, only to discover that it hasn’t set our hearts on fire—or even worse, that didn’t pay the bills. And we’ve watched as more distractions crop up, slowly taking over our calendars (and taking our sanity along with them). This all adds up to a lingering, deflating sense of frustration towards life and work.

The truth is, sometimes it’s time to let the old ways die and begin life anew. This is why I’ve recently archived all my artworks and preparing to start a new chapter in my life—and a new series of work.

A New Rose Blooms on the Bush
Raw Pigment, Acrylic and Charcoal on Canvas

I love what I created in the past, but a new me awaits. And as this card from my Art of Life Inspiration Deck confirms, “It’s time to choose the new energy of flow, optimism, hope and renewal.’ As I write, it’s winter here in New Zealand. But I can choose summery thoughts. I can choose to focus on what I do want to feel and away from what I don’t. We all can.

The text on this card was inspired by the many incantations my special commission, Always Summer, required, and the brief which was for the painting to always feel like summer even when it rained. 

Moods are like clouds. Some float across the clear sky and continue along their way. Others linger and threaten to stay. With an intention to stay in the energy of love, light and peace, we can observe our moods and choose which ones in which to seek refuge. 

We have that power. Even during the bleakest of days in our hearts and minds, it can always be summer.

What are some of your favourite mood-elevating moves? Journaling? Writing? Singing? Working with a therapist? Sharing your worries with a friend? A massage? Practising radical acceptance? Meditation. 

There are so many ways to paint the landscapes of our minds in uplifting, mood-enhancing ways.

I did “a Trump” one night. Something was on my mind, something I was frustrated by, something I wanted to fix. Immediately. Right then. On the spot. At 2:15 am.

Unlike the then President, I didn’t summon others to witness my frustration. I didn’t spread any conspiracy theories. I didn’t blame others. I simply lifted the canvas that wasn’t working and started repainting.

Big mistake! Instead of creating a legacy piece, I ended up with a big mud puddle. The light was poor. The paint wouldn’t dry. The conditions were less than optimal. But I couldn’t let go. I couldn’t quit. And things went from bad to worse.

Is there something in your life right now that’s frustrating you? Does an impulsive drive to fix things make things worse?

Definitions of frustration include:

“The feeling of being upset or annoyed as a result of being unable to change or achieve something.”

“The prevention of the progress, success, or fulfilment of something.”

I was getting frustrated because what I was trying to do was important to me. I wanted to create something beautiful. The action I took made me question whether I wanted to continue to be an artist. I felt like throwing away my paints.

What I needed to do was change my attitude. Here are a few things I’ll do next time frustration creeps in:

• Remind myself that something beautiful can come from mistakes

• Work with energy—2:15 am is not my optimum time

• Step away. I don’t have a golf course to retreat to, but I did have a nice warm bed.

• Be playful. In the total scheme of life, even a bad day at the easel is better than the worst jobs I’ve ever had

• Be grateful for the successes I have achieved

• Remember to balance work and life. Painting is part of my career combo. Sometimes I need to paint just for me

• Share my feelings with others who can help me recalibrate

• Set some rules—like not painting after midnight!

And last but not least, remind myself that I am the Joyful Painter. Always, always, always work with joy. I’ve set up an Instagram page. If you’d love to see my work as it evolves, please follow me here>>https://www.instagram.com/cassandragaisford/

This video was created by a wonderful man who, with his wife, commissioned ‘Always Summer’,
explains more about what inspires my creativity. “When it’s winter, I paint summer.”

This has been an excerpt from The Art of Life: Thriving Through Chaos: Insights and Inspiration to Spark and Sustain Your Creative Life. Available in ebook, paperback and hardback from Amazon

Universal Link: getbook.at/TheArtofLifeBook

Posted in: Uncategorized

Start to finish: Recreating an artwork | Encaustic Painting Tutorial

Date: March 1st, 2022, Posted by cassandra

Wasabi, Cassandra Gaisford, Encaustic on Board, 2022

I’m Cassandra Gaisford—The Joyful Artist. I’m an award-winning artist, bestselling author and creativity coach. 

In this video, I share, how to take a painting you no longer love and “change it up!”

You’ll see me working with NZ beeswax, pure pigment and oil crayons as I totally redo a previous artwork. I’ll be fusing with a propane torch and a heat gun.

I also share how to overcome the fear of making mistakes.

I love painting in the style of abstract expressionism inspired by nature. I create flowers and landscapes using acrylic paints, watercolours, encaustic, pastels and pencils (and other art-making tools). 

I am fortunate to live in the Bay of Islands, New Zealand. 

Follow all my creative adventures on Instagram or Facebook (links below). Feel free to ask questions below and let me know what part of the episode was most helpful to you. If you like this video, please give me a thumbs up. This helps me understand what types of videos I should create. Also, subscribe to my channel so that you’re notified of new videos. 

Sign up for my email list and receive a free gift: http://eepurl.com/huqe1T

Thank you for watching! I hope you find my videos inspiring and love my work. 

You may also enjoy this book about my creative inspirations: The Joyful Artist: Freeing the Artist Within


You can also find me here: 

Website: https://www.cassandragaisford.com 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cassandragaisford/(this is the best place to see all my artwork and behind the scenes videos, etc.) 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cassandra-Gaisford-Art-105609748625239

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B016LGWES2


For those ready to explore the playful freedom of Abstract Art. Play Dates is my 6-week online course that I’ve created just for you!

I invite you to join me on this self-paced abstract adventure across 6 different units and over 20 different lessons. I’m excited to show you so many things!

Whether you are a beginner, experienced or a pro who has lost their flow, I can show you how to loosen up, how to create art that speaks, art you love. I can help you take your art to the next level.

 Would you love to play?

Join here

Did you enjoy this post?

You can view my art and purchase my art here:https://shop.cassandragaisford.com/product-category/art/

You might like:



Posted in: Uncategorized