MSA is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Read the full disclosure.

Smart Art Subscription Box Review + Coupon – March 2018

closed smart art purple box

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!

open smart art box

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).

smart art march 2018 review

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.

COUPON: Use code ENJOYART to get $5 off your 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 March 2018 Review

This month’s project was creating a painting using alcohol inks! 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 project pointers, and on the right, there’s some info on Jacquard Pinata Inks plus the supply list.

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.

Jacquard Pinata Alcohol Inks 0.5 oz (x3) – Total Retail Value $10.77 ($3.59 each)

Pinata Claro Extender – Retail Value $3.59

Pinata Clean Up Solution – Value $3.59

Art Alternatives Illustration Blender Marker – Buy a 2-pack for $5.99

Yupo Translucent Watercolor Paper Pad 5″x7″ – Retail Value $9.29

Princeton Series 6500 Aspen Brushes Filbert Size 2 – Retail Value $12.95

Sakura Microperm Pen Black 0.45mm – Retail Value $2.20

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 husband took on this month’s Smart Art challenge! His first step was to start laying down the lightest colored inks. We are both huge fans of alcohol inks, and these are super vibrant!

Next, he added some red and started blending the colors together. In these first steps, he is simply dropping the colors right out of the bottle and onto the page.

At this point, he was filling the page with colors, still straight out of the bottle, and using the extender to lighten the color in some areas. Extender is like a clear alcohol ink that dilutes the existing colors.

Here he began using the brush to start adding finer details such as the individual blades of grass. He really liked the brush that was supplied!

Next, he used the blender marker to add variation and blend colors together. A blender marker is like a colorless marker used, well, for blending!

This is his completed painting! I absolutely love it! This is one of my favorite works he has done in recent times. His final step was to add all the black ink drawing with the Sakura pen. We are both big fans of Sakura pens for their clarity and fine detail.

The Verdict: My husband and I are both huge fans of Smart Art! My husband enjoyed creating his art this month, and we are both amazed at the result. We both love working with alcohol inks, and this particular brand is so vibrant and easy to work with. Just look at those colors! The value this month was a little less than the cost of the box, $45 worth of materials for $50, but that’s about right for a fine arts subscription box. Plus I feel that the instruction and curation add to the overall value.

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No, you will receive the May 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 April 30th will be shipped May 1st.

Coupon – Use code MSA20 to save 20% off your first box

Check out all of our Smart Art reviews and the Craft Subscription Box Directory!

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

What do you think of Smart Art?

Smart Art

How do subscribers rate Smart Art?


Created with Sketch.

Never miss a post: get email alerts about Smart Art!

Enable notifications () to get the latest Smart Art spoilers, reviews, deals, and news delivered to your inbox.


Written by Anna Rodriguez

Anna Rodriguez

Anna has been a fan of subscription boxes since joining Birchbox in 2013, but didn’t become a true addict until discovering subscriptions she could share with her children. Her favorites include Kiwi Crate and Fab Kids.

Posted in Craft Subscription Boxes, Smart Art Reviews, Subscription Box Reviews| Tags: smart art | 6 comments

Comments (6)

  1. I absolutely LOVE what he did with it!! Brilliant!!

    • Thanks M!

  2. I’m so not an artist myself, but I love seeing your reviews of this box!

    • Thank you Jill! That makes my day!

  3. What a beautiful and fun painting, well done💕

    • Thanks Anna!

Please do not enter your email address in the Name field or in the comment content!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Remember to post with kindness and respect. Comments with offensive language, cruelness to others, etc will not be approved. See our full comment policy here.