So I asked Carolyn if she’d do a guest post for us here, and I love what she has to say:
I messed up. I made a mistake. I ruined it. I failed. These aren’t the most encouraging thoughts, but they were the thoughts that ran through my head until I learned to say “oops.” Saying “oops” reminds me that what just happened is an Outstanding Opportunity Presenting Suddenly.
Oops is a silly word that I can’t take too seriously because really, are any of my art mistakes something to worry about? NO! Does worrying about them help me in any way? NO!
Oops happen all the time in my studio. I have now come to appreciate them as gifts that take me in a direction that is even better than where I was expecting to go! Here are a few of the oops in my work.
I have patience issues. I didn’t let everything dry before I started stenciling on this page with stencils by Terri Stegmiller
and Lizzie Mayne
. Part of the orange paint in the top corner was pulled up when I lifted the stencil. A mistake? Nope. Just an oops.
The opportunity in this oops? It’s a place for texture, more purple, and to break up all the orange at the top!
I had a great idea to use this elephant stencil by Nathalie Kalbach
on an art journal page. I started the background and when I put the stencil down I realized it was larger than my journal. A horrible tragedy? Nope. It was just an oops.
The opportunity in this oops? A chance to see how the elephant looked walking into my art journal. If I hadn’t made that oops, I never would have thought to try this.
As I put the butterflies down on this tag I realized there was no space at the bottom for the quote. Did I ruin it? Nope.
The opportunity in this oops? I had to find somewhere else to put the quote. When I decided to put the quote in the color charts made with Pam Carriker’s stencil
I needed a longer quote. That led me to look into an old book which gave me the playful words.
My mistakes used to bring me disappointment, anxiety and frustration. Now they bring me opportunities. Now I hear encouraging words in my head when things don’t go as planned and my time in the studio is filled with joy.
Ricë is the author of Living the Creative Life, Creative Time and Space, and Destination Creativity. She also blogs at The Voodoo Cafe.
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