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Smart Art Subscription Box Review + Coupon – May 2018

smart art may 2018 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!

smart art may 2018 box inside

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 may 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 May 2018 Review

smart art may 2018 booklet

This month’s project was creating an acrylic pour painting! 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.

smart art may 2018 booklet 2

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 acrylic paint pouring plus the supply list.

smart art may 2018 booklet 3

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.

smart art may 2018 supplies

Here are the supplies that were included for this month’s project.

DecoArt Americana Multi-Surface Acrylic 8 oz, 3 pcs – Retail Value$7.50 each

DecoArt Pouring Medium 8 oz – Retail Value $5.98 (found on sale here for $3.99)

Canvas Panels, 2 pcs, 8″x10″ & 5″x7″ – Retail Value $3.33 and $5.27

Art Alternatives Medium Density Fireboard (MDF) Panels, 2 pcs, 4″x4″ & 6″x6″ – Retail Value $1.09 and $1.69  

Nylon Palette Knife, 3.5″ Straight – Retail Value $0.89

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.

smart art may 2018 process

My husband decided to take this month’s project on! His first step was to prepare his work surface. Cleverly, he decided to turn the box into the tray they suggested instead of going out and buying an aluminum tray. He rested the canvas on two disposable cups to elevate it.

smart art may 2018 process 2

His second step was to mix his pouring medium with his colored paints. This is where all the magic happens, and I don’t fully understand it, to be honest, but essentially by pouring everything slowly, he avoided mixing the colors.

smart art may 2018 process 3

On his first try, he used the “flip-cup” method, which means he put the canvas over the cup and then inverted it.

smart art may 2018 process 4

Then he just removed the cup and let the paint pour all over the place!

smart art may 2018 painting 1

Then he gently tilted the canvas around until he got the colors and the streaking he wanted. This is his first completed pour painting! Very cool!

smart art may 2018 painting 2

Smart Art suggested several other things to try to make different types of pour paintings, so he decided to do another one. For this one, he did essentially the same method, but he used some alcohol inks in the mix, too. I think this one turned out absolutely beautiful! They are both very abstract, but I strongly prefer this one.

The Verdict: My husband and I are both huge fans of Smart Art!  My husband really enjoyed trying pour painting, even though he is not generally a huge fan of abstract art. I think it turned out really awesome! The value this month was considerably less than the cost of the box, $40.66 worth of materials for $50. This is a little low even for a fine arts subscription box. I definitely feel like the curation and instruction adds to the overall value of the box, but it is subjective. So you would have to decide for yourself 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 July 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!

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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 | 5 comments

Comments (5)

  1. The second one looks almost 3-D! I would be proud to have that hanging on my wall! Great work Mr. Anna 🙂

    • Thanks Jessica!

  2. I love how unique and beautiful this technique looks on the canvas! Thanks for the great review and sharing your beautiful work of art 🙂

    • Aw Thank You Mallory!

  3. This was fun to read because I just did pour painting earlier this week! It is really awesome if you put a few drops of liquid silicone (just make sure you don’t stir it too much after you add it)!

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