Smart Art is a fine arts subscription service that sends a new project every month and all the supplies needed to complete it. My husband and I are both artists, and we have been having a blast with our Smart Art subscription!
This box was sent to us at no cost to review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).
About Smart Art
The Subscription Box: Smart Art
The Cost: $49.95 per month with free shipping. Save with 3, 6, and 12-month subscriptions.
ACTIVE DEAL: $5 off your first subscription
The Products: A fine arts project, complete with instructions and supplies
Ships to: U.S. only
Good to know: It's a different project in a different media every month, using different techniques!
Smart Art December 2017 Review
This month's project was designing greeting cards with a gelatin plate! This is the booklet that Smart Art sends every month. It includes art history related to the project, a list of the included supplies, project pointers, and instructions.
Subscribers can upload a picture of their finished project to Smart Art's Facebook page for a chance to win a free box! That's really cool! On the other hand, our projects usually take forever, so we always seem to miss the boat on this contest.
This is the inside of the booklet. On the left are the art history and the supply list, and on the right, there's some info on gel printing plates plus project pointers.
The instructions are printed on the back of the booklet. They are pretty clear and easy to follow, but they still allow for as much creativity as you like.
Here are the supplies that were included for this month's project:
Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plates 5"x7" - Retail Value $20.99
Gelli Arts 4" Rubber Brayer - Estimated Value $4.50 (buy a 10-pack for $44.99)
Gelli Arts Premium Acrylic Paints (3 pcs) - Total Retail Value $8.97 ($2.99 each)
Please note that the values listed here are list prices. Almost all of them can be found for less at most online discount art supply stores.
My first step was to put drops of blue and white paint directly onto the gel plate. Then I used the brayer to spread the paint over the plate. It was super smooth and really easy to spread the paint.
The next step was to add texture. I used the bubble wrap that came in my Smart Art box to press into the paint on the gel plate and impress the design.
Separately, I cut out a little snowflake stencil. I was going for a very abstract look, so I didn't make it very geometrical. I thought the bubble wrap would add plenty of uniformity.
Next, I placed the stencil over the gel plate to prevent the paint from marking the card in that area.
This is my completed greeting card! I think it turned out pretty good. I just pressed the card onto the plate and voila!
Then I got creative and decided to put the stencil on the bubble wrap and press another card directly onto the bubble wrap. I like the way this one turned out a lot, too! I can't decide which one I like more!
The Verdict: My husband and I are both huge fans of Smart Art! I love creating stamps and stencils, so this was a fun one for me, and I think the gel plate is just fantastic! It's so easy to work with. The value of this month's contents was about $44, which is under the $50 cost of the box. That's pretty typical for a fine arts subscription box. I think you have to factor in the value of the instruction and other printed and online materials to decide if it is worth it to you.
To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No, you will receive the January box. From Smart Art:
Sign up on or before the last day of the month to get the current box that will be released on the 1st of the following month! All orders processed after the last day of the month will ship the following month. For example, a purchase made on January 31st will be shipped February 1st. A purchase made on February 1st will be shipped March 1st.
Coupon – Use code MSA20 to save 20% off your first box
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