≡ Menu

Next post:

Previous post:

It’s Just An Oops

Step by step art journal page with Carolyn Dube

I used to fight making mistakes.  Pointing out all my imperfections to myself with a strong dose of harsh judgement.  No shocker that being creative often ended in frustration for me back then.  But it doesn’t any more.  Why?  I just say Oops.

Step by step art journal page with Carolyn Dube

This is a random mess of a page. I was using up torn bits off the counter, pieces of Gelli prints, tried out the Croco Crackling Color  I just bought (huge wonderful cracks by the way), grabbed paint colors and smeared it on with no plan.  Do the colors match the way I intended? Nope. Mistake?  Nope.  It’s just an Oops.

An Oops is something unintended.  It’s not good or bad.  It is just an Oops.



Step by step art journal page with Carolyn Dube

The scalloped border with the green blobs at the bottom of the page is too short to cover the entire width of the page.  A mistake? Nope.  An Oops.

There are opportunities in every Oops.  I love that there is some of the stamp and the pink peeking out from the edge of that scallop.  That never would have happened if I had a longer piece of paper.




Step by step art journal page with Carolyn Dube

There is one huge Oops on this page. The pink and blue library pocket.  It has 6 different layers of paint under the collage bits.  I had only expected to put 1 layer on it.  Didn’t look right.  A mistake?  A failure? 6 mistakes? 6 Failures?  Nope, all 6 were Oops.

The Oops were opportunities to build up layers of color and then to reach for the collage.  I love that I collaged it the end but I just wasn’t ready to go that direction until I had tried 6 other things.  The Oops led me somewhere even better than I had planned.



Step by step art journal page with Carolyn Dube


Why the blue on the ATC here?  Because there was an Oops.  I had cut this woman out of a Gelli print using Dina Wakley’s stencil and added some subtle gray stamping. I loved the ageless definition on the dictionary page with her- the attitudes fit perfectly. But the definition just didn’t stand out the way I expected it stand out. A mistake? Nope.  An Oops.

The opportunity in this Oops?  The blue pops on the orange and I never would have collaged that word if it hadn’t been for the Oops!


Step by step art journal page with Carolyn Dube

These are smashed bottle caps covered in Vintaj Patina.  These are so much fun to make because they are one big Oops.

It’s hard to control what you get when you pound bottle caps with a hammer then smear blobs of paint on top.  Oops can be fun when you embrace that you can’t really control exactly what happens.



Step by step art journal page with Carolyn Dube


She’s right at home in her library pocket with her ATC and the smashed bottle caps (on the right).  As fun as this page is, it is still missing a critical element for me- the journaling. I forgot to put it under the quote on the library pocket as planned.  Failure? Nope. An Oops.




If I had remembered the journaling on the library card I never would have looked for another way to journal.  I used Dylusion’s inks to spray a blank product tag yellow and the scribble journaled all over it.

This art journal page is filled with Oops after Oops and that is a good thing!  Every  Oops  will  led me somewhere even better than what I envisioned.

Step by step art journal page with Carolyn Dube


Looking for more creativity? Check out Paint Party Friday, Art Journal Every Day,  Fashionable Stamping (anything goes), The Dictionary Challenge (the letter A)and  Anything But a Card (ATC’s).


{ 46 comments… add one }

Leave a Comment

  • Cynthia May 8, 2013, 7:38 am

    Wow wow wow!! LOVE the colors! So vibrant and alive! And the Mystery Woman is too cool–love her attitude. The addition of the library card is quite ingenious and I’m totally saving that idea to steal for a future project! 😉

  • Julie G. May 8, 2013, 8:56 am

    Very cool page! So vibrant and alive. I still struggle with the journaling on my pages…very hard for me to do beyond the occasional “title”. Have you blogged about ways to do this? If so, please point me at it 🙂

    • Carolyn May 8, 2013, 9:07 am

      I’ll have to work on that!

  • Judy Shea May 8, 2013, 9:31 am

    This is one of my favorite pages you’ve done. Really.. slam, bam, thank you maam. I’m sharing and give you a new word for your “oops”. “Oops-elicious.’

    • Carolyn May 8, 2013, 9:33 am

      You need to work for Webster’s! That is an awesome word!

  • Corrine May 8, 2013, 9:53 am

    Wow, this one just made me smile and smile, pops of color, bright lights, pockets, cutouts what haven’t you done with this page…..xox

  • Jessica Sporn May 8, 2013, 10:50 am

    I throwing another word into the pot – fabuloops! That’s what I think. Love how you broke down each oops for us and how it led to strokes of genius. LOVE LOVE LOVE this page!

  • Jessica Sporn May 8, 2013, 10:51 am

    I *am* throwing…

  • Marjie Kemper May 8, 2013, 10:52 am

    Love these amazingly rich colors… fantastically vibrant, like you!

  • Gail May 8, 2013, 11:11 am

    And out of oops come fabulous-ness! I have always tried to embrace my oops and find the creative randomness I otherwise would not have had. Thanks for sharing the magic of the oops Carolyn…more artists need to learn to embrace their oops and just smack that harsh judgement monkey up side the head. 🙂

  • Annette G May 8, 2013, 1:03 pm

    loving your ‘oops, its a fab page Carolyn, xx

  • christina reedy May 8, 2013, 1:44 pm

    in college, we always called our oops–“happy accidents”. we didnt mean to them to happen…but most of the time, they worked out for the best that way.

  • Valerie-Jael May 8, 2013, 2:59 pm

    Gorgeous colours, have fun with oopsing! Valerie

  • Sandra L. May 8, 2013, 3:12 pm

    I like your Oopses. Really…your page looks so bright and colorful!
    I especially like the saying on the library pocket.

  • April Cole May 8, 2013, 3:51 pm

    Absolutely love the pages… such vibrant colors, makes me feel “ALIVE!!” :]

  • Sandy Dehon May 8, 2013, 4:09 pm

    Love your oops page with gobs of new ideas — that’s what I am going to say from now on – oops!

  • Silvia May 8, 2013, 5:06 pm

    A fantastic colorful page. Thanks for joining us at FSC this fortnight.

  • Annie May 8, 2013, 5:13 pm

    Your walk through of your page is a perfect lesson! LOVE your page!

  • Boo May 8, 2013, 8:04 pm

    Your ooops page is wonderful. I’m so glad you write about making ooops into opportunity. I enjoy my art so much more since I’ve adopted that attitude.

  • Nancy Lee May 8, 2013, 9:40 pm

    OK, let’s all go”ooping”! Wonderful colors! Thanks for your pics!

  • Bev May 8, 2013, 10:15 pm

    Your oops turn out so well! Lovely card!

  • Maria McGuire May 9, 2013, 12:24 am

    OOPS! = AWESOME!!! really, really awesome!!!! Every oops on this page leads the eye to the next and they come together in a perfect page 🙂

  • Scrapmate May 9, 2013, 4:56 am

    I am such an admirer of your work (albeit a silent one). I was thrilled to see you had joined in with the Craft Barn alpha challenge. Your use of colour is awesome and I love your explanations and thought processes. A truly wonderful piece of art.

  • Suzy May 9, 2013, 8:46 am

    The energy from the oops makes your piece exciting! Love the colors and thanks for taking us through the working process in such a creative way. Love your piece!

  • Frea May 10, 2013, 7:38 am

    Hi Carolyn, love your website, I came here via the Craft Barn dictionary challenge to have a look at your dictionary page. I love your ‘oopses’ LOL! Then I started browsing your blog and it really put a smile on my face. So cheerful with all the bright colours, love it! I’ve subscribed by email, would love to see all the new stuff you make! I have just started my own mixed media blog and am always looking for inspiration with other bloggers. Would love it if you would pop over and pay me a visit too! Here’s the link: http://messymixedmediabyfrea.blogspot.nl
    Hugs Frea

  • Michelle Mathey - POMI May 10, 2013, 10:22 am

    I used to fret over my “oops” too but now I call them “Happy Happenstances” – Great page!! Love the silhouette –

  • Piarom May 10, 2013, 11:44 am

    amazing how this all come together and yes ooopsies are my friend too 🙂 love the smashed bottle cups ♥ Conny

  • Kay Wallace May 10, 2013, 12:57 pm

    Also one of my favorites…must be the layering–or is it the ATC–wait, maybe its the library pocket–sure, it’s the colors! Just a great combination of goodies, Carolyn!

  • Lena May 10, 2013, 2:22 pm

    Beautiful oops! all of them!

  • Faye May 10, 2013, 10:47 pm

    Carolyn, you are so creative. Lemons into lemonade or lemon pie! Great use of gelli prints. So many wonderful layers.

  • giggles May 11, 2013, 1:31 am

    I love the oops…. all masters of the home know full well about turning oops into beauty!! Especially when cooking!! I especially love the circles…beautiful….love all the vibrant whimsy too!

    Hugs Giggles

  • Elisa Choi May 11, 2013, 2:32 am

    a post everyone should see! Lovely way to turn every oops into something extraordinary. embracing our mistakes is also fun and positive!

  • sandra sherman May 11, 2013, 3:11 am

    What a beautiful outcome Carole! Some of my best work has been make with “happy accidents” HPPF

  • Anne May 11, 2013, 4:22 am

    It’s lovely and full of joyful energy and I love it! Great post! <3

  • denthe May 11, 2013, 8:24 am

    Wonderful post and so true. I changed my way of thinking after doing Flora Bowley’s workshop. Since then I see every mistake (or oops ☺) as another layer, adding more depth to the piece. Looking at it from this viewpoint really makes you more adventurous and less afraid to try things out. I love how your page ended up!

  • Valerie - P'tite Plume May 11, 2013, 8:26 am

    Of attractive colors which put of the enjoyment and the vitality. Great page!

  • Raine May 11, 2013, 11:11 pm

    First of all, I have watched so many of your videos, that I now hear your voice when I read your blog!
    Second, I’m with Jessica Sporn. I think “fabuloops” is perfect! It’s also a little loopy…and that’s a fun way to be when you’re making art. I can result in the very best fabuloops!

  • Gina Sismilich May 13, 2013, 9:27 am

    That is one fun and colorful OOPS. That is exactly what I try to do now in my painting – I can always “fix” an oops and make it better than I had planned. If not – then there is gesso! You are right – oops shuts off that critical left brain and makes for the fun in creating. Love your page and your post.

  • Julia S-W May 13, 2013, 12:32 pm

    Such a fun read and I think I’ll adopt your ‘oops’ word now instead of the sometimes unmentionable ones that are used here occasionally when things go ‘wrong’ (word now outlawed!).
    Totally gorgeous oops and I love the ATC with the orange and blue combination Carolyn.
    Thanks so much for joining us at Anything But A Card this time.

  • Annabelle May 14, 2013, 4:11 pm

    The art of accidental art …..those colours are magnificently vibrant, happy and so spontaneous, I guess I can say that, right ; ) Luv the Oops feel to this , who would of thunk….the best creations are the ones that surprise you happily with contentment and satisfaction!!! Lovely art, thanks for sharing.
    Annabelle O,O

  • Sylv May 15, 2013, 4:13 am

    Fabulous page, love the collage of colour. Great post too it made me smile.

    Sylv xx

  • Gloria J Zucaro May 15, 2013, 10:50 am

    You make it look like such fun and not a trauma!

  • JKW May 16, 2013, 6:09 pm

    I love this one. I use my oops as a way to learn something new about what I can fix and what I can’t. I’ll have ‘two’ of those this next week. To me you don’t have an oops and I find that many of you have good advice or don’t see my oops either. Thanks so much for your great encouragements through these PPF days. Blessings, Janet PPF

  • Yvonne Garner May 18, 2013, 2:42 am

    I so enjoy your journal pages. A breath of fresh air! Thanks so much for joining us at FSC!

  • Izzy May 21, 2013, 8:23 am

    Beautiful and colourful page !!
    Thanks for playing with us at the Craft Barn

  • Linda Dunnihoo October 15, 2020, 4:32 pm

    Thank you so much for OOPS. I recently grabbed some gesso I hadn’t used in awhile and OOPS it was semi dried out. I thought of you and grabbed a little trowel tool and did a textured background with it. Then I wondered how you could thin it, and grabbed a little container and blobbed a bit in it, and guess what you can, it takes a lot of stirring. Before oops I would just have kicked myself and thrown it away. THANK YOU FOR OOPS.