Cassandra Snow

Magickal. Practical. Radical.

Cassandra Snow is a tarot card reader, writer, and theater artist professionally. This website is focused on her life in tarot, with substantial references to witchcraft, LGBTQ+ community, and chronic illness.

Filtering by Tag: interviews

Better Late Than Never!

Hello all,

I am back for this blog's monthly Link Roundup; admittedly I'm about a week late but it's for a very good reason. My 18 year old sister came into visit from Ohio! She is the cutest, sweetest little human and I cut my workload down to "need this money now" work. I missed doing my other stuff though, so next time I'll get it all queued up before I have a visitor. 

Out adventuring with my Sister. Had to show her my river :)

Out adventuring with my Sister. Had to show her my river :)

Before we dive in, TWO quick announcements! People are getting excited about both of the workshops I'm doing in August which is getting me all kinds of excited (but also nervous). The first is a revamp and remount of my Queering the Tarot workshop at The Future on August 17th. The other JUST officially announces is a brand-new (but still totally in my wheelhouse) Sex & Tarot course at The Smitten Kitten! Luckily for you, Queering the Tarot is sliding scale starting at just $15, and Sex & Tarot is FREE to you! Which means you could potentially take two radical tarot classes that weekend for just $15, and that actually seems like a pretty sweet deal to me!

Now, on to radical things OTHER people are writing and doing! 

Politics & Resistance

  • If you want a quick breakdown on what's going on with that BS Department of Justice statement that LGB people aren't covered under Title VII, Autostraddle has you covered.
  • There's some pretty important legislation being discussed about the non-profit sector too. It's easy to be overwhelmed right now, so this was easy to miss. 
  • A Lithub personal essay/book review about being torn between queer and Southern identity, plus the books he covers sound like important reads too.
  • Why IS Hyperfemininity Expected of Fat Girls? This one practically garnered applause from me.
  • I should probably just have a permalink list somewhere to all of Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha's writing, and her Bitch articles have been on point lately. I especially loved "A Modest Proposal For a Fair Trade Emotional Labor Economy (Centered By Disabled, Femme of Color, Working Class/Poor Genius)". 
  • On Black Lives Matter, Queer Identity, and Appalachia. 
  • Lisa Frank Body Positivity is not as cool as it sounds. This is a good read though.
  • Prison Reform is one of the most important issues to me that never gets talked about. The way our society dehumanizes and traumatizes inmates, many of whom are in for minor crimes or no real reason at all, physically makes me ill. This piece talks about the juvenile system and why it's reform is a necessary queer issue. 

Tarot & Witchery

  • This has been shared around a bit in metaphysical circles, but just in case you missed it: "Astrology of the Stonewall Riots" is as cool as it sounds. 
  • Asali Earthwork regularly blows me away with her writing and witchery. This month I bookmarked both her review of The Personal Space Tarot and this so-necessary piece about mental health and witchcraft. The review is a really great example of a review and discusses tarot and the deck in depth. The personal piece spoke to me so deeply and is every bit as brave and beautiful as the title suggests. As a bonus, head over to her shop and snag some tea because it is delicious.
  • Dior is making Motherpeace Tarot inspired clothes now, and Vogue has the scoop! I completely nerded out when I saw this. 
  • "See the cripple dance" is ALWAYS one of my favorite Little Red Tarot columns, but this one on the Seven of Cups hit really deeply for this PTSD-trodden, chronically ill queer.
  • Also from Little Red: a super easy, informative guide to snagging the best crystals for spiritual fatigue.
  • I'm never going to stop posting about representation in the spiritual community and why it matters. I'm also never gonna stop linking back to radical writers of color highlighting the issues better than I ever could. 

Writing & Business

  • I love peering into people's personal work processes, and Benebell Wen's look at promotional tactics, what worked, and what didn't was great insight with useful information AND things that won't work for everyone but were still fun to read.
  • In Minneapolis everyone has a Prince AND a Bob Dylan story; in any case Seth Godin went somewhere I didn't quite expect with this one
  • This really applies to all types of writing and made me laugh a lot. Here's "How Not To Write A Play."
  • Y'all know by now how much I adore Theresa Reed, especially her "Soul Propietor" series. This one on how you want to feel in your business is especially good. 
  • A cute cartoon about job and gig hunting that everyone should see. It'll take you four seconds but it's good!
  • I talk about "Money Dates" a lot and how they've changed my life and both of my businesses, but it never occurred to me to share this primer from Bari Tessler herself with you. So...here you go!
A picture of Sir Didymus to break up the monotony of text. 

A picture of Sir Didymus to break up the monotony of text. 

Theatre & Art

  • "A Collective Call Against Critical Bias" is a wonderful start to important conversations about arts criticism and where we drawn the line, and features goodies like: "As female artists and academics…we have dedicated our careers…to dismantling discriminatory structures and practices in theater, and the criticism this year is so blatantly prejudicial that we felt compelled to collectively author an editorial that both documents the problem and puts it in an historical context."
  • There's a new series at the Twin Cities Arts Reader entitled "The Curmudgeon" about all the ways arts organizations are NOT actually helping the press help them. It sounds heady but it's actually really easy to access information about how to market shows better. 
  • I was so happy and surprised when I saw my friend Shannon on one of my favorite blogs today. Shannon runs Uprising Theatre Company, is a fantastic writer in his own right, and oh yeah, is a transgender Priest
  • Sometimes the title does the talking for us, like in "The Necessity of Diverse Voices in Theatre Regarding Disability and Difference."

All The Other Things I Love and Thought You Might Too

  • I was obsessed with Poison Ivy as a child. No, not the Batman character I'm still in love with, the other one. The movie starring Drew Barrymore. I guess I wasn't alone and this revisit from Dazed was written wonderfully. 
  • Andi Grace gets real at Little Red Tarot about what she's been through lately, and tells us what she's learned living in a van about boundaries and letting go. This one was truly beautiful.
  • One of my biggest flaws is that I'm a jealous friend. I will love you deeply and unconditionally. I will want nothing but the best for you. I will also be unbelievably jealous and feel incredibly stupid voicing that to you. So I was relieved to find an actual good article addressing this jealousy and it's roots.
  • An oldie but a goodie came back up in my feed the other day--an absolutely side-splitting teardown of Goodnight Moon. 

That's it for me y'all! Blessed be.

Heart and Hands Tarot--Support Now!

Good Afternoon all! I once again feel myself compelled to apologize for a lack of posts but I'm excited to be back, and SO excited to be writing a tarot deck in the works. Liz Blackbird contacted me about her upcoming Heart and Hands Tarot and the IndieGoGo making it all possible. I'm always happy to support queer creators, and I was additionally intrigued by the black and white art. As I watched the video on the campaign's page, I was moved by the unspoken but strong healing energy that went into the deck. I responded and told Liz I was eager to learn more. Here's our Q&A and some info about how you can support this great deck:

Tell us about yourself, first!
My name is Liz Blackbird (she/her/hers). I’m a visual artist, fiction writer, and poet currently based in Brooklyn, but I’m about to move to Ohio to pursue an MFA in creative writing. I’m originally from Michigan, so this will be a bit of a homecoming!

Prior to printing this deck, what was your relationship to tarot?
I’ve been interested in tarot since I was a teenager. I grew up in the suburbs of Flint in the 90s and generally felt a little unsatisfied with the environment around me, like it was kind of a bad fit, like there had to be something better out there. So I think I was predisposed to be attracted to all things magical. I was not raised religious, but my mother’s family was Catholic and evangelical Christianity was a strong (and often oppressive) force many of my friends’ lives, so I’ve also always been resistant to organized religion. A lot of my friends at that time felt similarly and were exploring wicca, neopaganism, and other more open-ended spiritual practices, and I initially learned about tarot through them. Many of us would ultimately come out as queer, and I think that had a lot to do with those initial feelings of discomfort with the status quo and the “bad fit” it seemed to be for us that led us to seek alternative spiritual paths in the first place.

The tarot attracted me as an artist, because I love the way its meanings are conveyed visually through mysterious and evocative images. It also nested nicely with my general agnosticism – whether or not I believe that I am being guided by supernatural forces, I can still trust that what I “read” in the tarot represents my truth on some level, even if it’s just tapping into something I already know about a situation but have been afraid to admit to myself, or giving me a framework to think about a situation in a different way. I generally only read for myself or close friends, so I’m usually pretty intimately acquainted with the lives of people I read for.

What stands out about the Heart and Hands deck? Why did you want to create this deck specifically?
The genesis of this deck was different than most, because it initially began not as a commercial endeavor, but as a personal project that I undertook to help me develop a new artistic direction at a time when I was feeling a little blocked. I had decided not to focus on studio art in college, and was regretting that decision a little bit. I had a really inspiring art professor at the time, Jyung Mee Park at the Maryland Institute College of Art, who essentially told me not to force it, that your art should stem from something you do naturally. In my sketchbooks, I had been doing a lot of casual black-and-white free-associative drawing, so I decided to try to take on a project in that style to see where I could go with it. I was already interested in tarot but didn’t feel that my knowledge of the cards’ meanings was very strong, so I decided to try designing my own deck to both stimulate my creativity and get to know the cards better. This, of course, turned out to be a much bigger project than I expected! It took me ten years to complete the illustrations. Though I had initially expected the project to remain private, as the years went by, so many of my friends saw my drawings and asked about how to get a copy of the deck that I decided I had to print it. I named it the Heart & Hands Tarot as a reminder of the power of our hearts to dream new possibilities and our hands to put those dreams into practice.

Ultimately, I think the black-and-white illustration style I developed is very unique and makes the deck stand out. I also think that my intention to enact a kind of creative “rebirth” through creating these cards really permeates the deck and comes through in the lushness and exuberance of the drawings. I also tried to create images that communicate the meanings of the cards in a direct and relatable way without requiring prior knowledge of other fields, like astrology and Kabbalah. But in general, I think my slow and meditative composition process—the fact that I didn’t force it—is what makes this deck special.

How does your deck speak to marginalized and queer audiences?
Because I identify as queer, and because queerness was so bound up in the way I first became interested in tarot, I tried to design this deck in a way that that avoided presuming heterosexuality or a male perspective, and that included people of color. Many of my figures, especially my Lovers, are very androgynous, and my number cards are all zoomed in to depict only the figures’ hands to avoid ascribing them a fixed identity. For my court cards, I chose to use a Prince and Princess rather than a Knight and Page to have gender equity within the court. There are also two major arcana cards that depict genderqueer figures – Justice and the World. In general, I wanted to create space in the designs for readers to be able to ascribe their own gender and sexuality interpretations to the cards.

Another big element of my work is in helping people heal so they can get to the part where they can be inspired and empowered. How does your deck speak to the healing process?
I think that in a lot of ways, creating this deck was a form of shadow work. Being a visual artist was a strong part of my identity as a teen, but because I did not focus on studio art in college, I found it harder and harder to maintain a creative practice in my 20s. Working on this deck was a big part of what kept me connected to that creative part of myself even as I was trying to make a living in other fields. Also, because the tarot is, among other things, a compendium of archetypal personalities, situations, concepts, and developmental states that we might experience throughout the life cycle, I found that working on parts of the deck that corresponded to issues I was dealing with in my life at the time was a great way to think through those issues in a broader, more distanced, more insightful way. 

Thank you so much for taking time to tell me more about this wonderful new addition to the tarot canon. How can we find out more or support you?
I’m currently running an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds to print the deck, so please visit my campaign page to support the project and to check out the "perks" (including copies of the deck) available for donating. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/heart-hands-tarot-deck/x/14290775#/ The campaign will be live until August 14th! I'm also launching an Etsy shop, ThirteenWaysToLook, so that I can make the deck available there after the campaign ends. It should be active by the winter of this year.

Thanks so much to all of you, especially Liz. Now, go support indie decks!

Blessed Be.