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Careful Measuring Lead to an OOPS for Let’s Play

art journaling video sharing how to be inspired by an everyday pattern

I had a plan that was inspired by a pattern on the sidewalk I noticed when I was on a bike ride. It was a crazy crazy plan.  It involved precision.  Straight lines and measuring. If this was a movie, you’d hear the ominous music playing.

But this isn’t a scary movie, it’s play inspired by the everyday, this month’s Let’s Play theme.

What is Let’s Play?  It’s all about rediscovering the ability to play. Each month I share a specific strategy that helped me recapture the freedom and fun of play. You can see all of them here. Plus get entered into the monthly giveaway by leaving a comment- details down below!

Watch How I used a pattern from the sidewalk in my art journal on YouTube.

Here’s the pattern than made me obsessed with using a grid in my art journal.

Art journal play inspired by the everyday

The moment this  pattern grabbed me, a plan that was destined to lead to an OOPS was hatched.  First, I would paint over ancient glue dots to create the raised bumps.

Art journal play inspired by the everyday

Next came the perfectly straight strips of paper that would make the grid lines under them.  I measured. CAREFULLY.  Really I did!  But the strips of paper did not come out as expected.  No fault of the paper cutter.  This was total user error.  OOPS!

art journaling video sharing how to be inspired by an everyday pattern

But I recovered.  I picked the most similar ones to use for building a precise grid. Or so I thought I would be building a grid.  I really wanted to build a grid.  In the video, you see why it didn’t turn into a grid.

Those tall yellow ledges were just the perfect platform for the leaping, running, dancing girl from my Learning to Dance stencil.  The title didn’t fit perfectly in the space I wanted, but that’s no problem with a stencil!  It’s easy to rearrange the words to fit the space.

art journaling video sharing how to be inspired by an everyday pattern

Two things were very clear to me at the end of my play session.  One, this page isn’t complete yet.  Two, I was done working on it for now, after all an art journal page does not have to be finished in one session.

Of course, I’ll be sharing where it goes next.  Get signed up for my newsletter (if you’re not already) and you’ll be sure to know what happens next to this page!

art journaling video sharing how to be inspired by an everyday pattern


This month's Let's Play theme is all about being inspired by the everyday

Want to see more Let’s Play videos? You can find all the weekly posts here.

Sharing your play:   I, and a whole bunch of others, would love to see what you’re creating!  We’re sharing it in the Facebook group called A Colorful Place to Play. Why Facebook?  I’ve listened to your feedback about how and where you’d like to share your play instead of the link parties.

Monthly giveaways:  Leave comment on any (and all for more chances) of the weekly Let’s Play blog posts to be entered and one winner each month will be chosen by random.org.  Want more chances to win a $50 gift certificate to DickBlick.com?  Pin any of the images from the page or share about it on Facebook- then come back and leave a comment telling me what you did and you can have more chances to win! Giveaway closes the Sunday, July 31st at 11 pm EST and the winner will announced on the blog the following Monday.

Congrats to Margaret Price, last month’s winner!

{ 25 comments… add one }

Leave a Comment

  • Jill McDowell July 18, 2016, 10:38 pm

    I’m so glad to see that someone else starts something in one direction and then finds a tangent to veer from. Thanks for the inspiration..

  • Kristiina July 19, 2016, 2:17 am

    Love to watch your process, gorgeous colours too 🙂

  • Nanci July 19, 2016, 5:20 am

    It might be a little minimalist for you, but I love it!!! Just the way it is!

  • Michele Haderer July 19, 2016, 8:55 am

    I love it! Very often, our “oops” is the best we’ve ever done!

  • Rebecca M July 19, 2016, 9:46 am

    Lol! I knew it wasn’t finished! I don’t think I’ve ever seen you use only three colors!

    Love the dancer on the columns, speaks to risk taking and joy!

  • Janis in ID July 19, 2016, 11:52 am

    I am enchanted by your gal dancing and skipping across those pillars!! What a fab page!!! Thanks so much for showing us your process. I love seeing how things develop and evolve for others.
    <3 J

    jwoolbright at gmail dot com

  • Corrine July 19, 2016, 12:37 pm

    I like your puffy stepping stones and your light on your feet gal. xox

  • Judy Shea July 19, 2016, 2:58 pm

    Hey Carolyn.. I love that just taking a bike ride inspired you to see creative ideas. Very cool. So good to not have pressure to finish a page. <3

  • Kimberly July 19, 2016, 3:58 pm

    I think you need someone
    to help you write you your own theme song!

  • Sheryl Jonas July 19, 2016, 4:15 pm

    My all time favorite is still where you made gelli prints with your cake decorating turn table. I loved it so much I went and got a circle Gelli plate and a cake decorating plate so I could make some. You inspired me!

  • Jean Marmo July 19, 2016, 4:51 pm

    Very cool!!!

  • Connie Livingston-Dunn July 19, 2016, 5:30 pm

    I like it just as it is, Sky Dancing……

  • Mary L Hockett Thoma July 19, 2016, 7:36 pm

    Love it Carolyn, your artistic philosophy is a kindred spirit with my own.

  • Annette July 19, 2016, 9:29 pm

    It always helps to have a plan to start with to, you know, get me started. But, the best part is when inspiration can takes me that much further. How fun to follow that inspiration! I know I can always go back to the original plan another day, give it a go and see what happens. If I’m lucky, I’ll get to go off on another tangent! Thanks, Carolyn. Another fine video.

  • kelly kardos July 20, 2016, 11:45 am

    I LOVE the way you play!!! thank you for this

  • Liz Jarman July 20, 2016, 2:33 pm

    You never fail to inspire me. Love this. Thank you 🙂

  • Annie July 22, 2016, 10:23 am

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Lauri July 24, 2016, 2:26 pm

    Love the color and it’s amazing how something so random can produce such inspiration!

  • Seahag July 24, 2016, 8:03 pm

    It’s so amazing how when you have a “supposed” plan, it morphs into something quite different. I love Permission to Play. It resonates deep into my Muse’s genetic profile! Hah! Thanks for your Sparks and inspiration!

  • Sharon Field July 24, 2016, 10:19 pm

    I love your ideas and your creativity! Thanks for another fun to watch video.

  • Amy Hodgson-Smith July 24, 2016, 10:46 pm

    Love your videos-never has learning been so much fun, or so therapeutic! I saved the photo of your completed page on Pinterest, to my art journaling board.

  • Janis in ID July 25, 2016, 1:56 pm

    Pinned here: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/476114991839300133/
    <3 J

    jwoolbright at gmail dot com

  • D.Ann C July 26, 2016, 1:10 pm

    Turned out super fun in spite of not being where you started off intending to go!

  • sarita July 29, 2016, 11:07 am

    Just found your site and love it. So much delicious INSPIRATION. Thank you for that…;)

  • Diana in Texas August 16, 2016, 12:48 pm

    Love your play today with the sidewalk inspiration!!