Mailbox: ArtSnacks - August 2017
There are a ridiculous number of subscription boxes available, to which I've absolutely fallen victim to in the past, present, and future. I tend to see a lot of reviews for the more popular brands -- LootCrate and Birchbox, to name a few -- so I'm determined to find a couple of companies with a bit more of a unique or tailored quality to them, as well as boxes that I feel can be of genuine use to our more creative folk.
With that being said, I present our first box...
ArtSnacks! (The August 2017 Box)
This is actually the second box I've received from them, but the first was easily why I decided to continue with them!
As an artist, I tend to get stuck in the same loop of technique and supplies -- which honestly, is fine, but it can lead to some serious art block after a while. Plus, it's always nice to feel like a Real Adult Artist who has a wide variety of tools and skill sets, so I'm always someone who is open to discovering new things. I'd been curious in subscribing to an art box for a while, and my past research had lead to a few being bookmarked for later. Once I decided to actually hunt one down, ArtSnacks was one of the first I'd stumbled upon, and the one that piqued the most interest at the time.
While I'm currently paying the month-by-month plan, there are also quarterly, half-year, and yearly subscriptions available, as well as an international monthly plan -- all of which (save international) include shipping, which I found to be rather cool.
Each month, you receive a box with four to five (full size!) items, as well as a little random candy, and a description ("Menu") card for each of the items, and any other news or information for that month. Also, a cute brand sticker!
One of my favourite things, however, is that the site also has a huge online store where you can buy a variety of supplies, official merch to show support, limited edition sketchbooks, and even entire past boxes! This is something I've yet to see with really any other subscription box, and is definitely something handy for artists to have.
For August, the box includes five items: Red Amsterdam Acrylic Ink, a Princeton Velvetouch Long Round Brush, a ZIG Cocoiro Letter Pen, a refill for said pen, and a Faber-Castell Ecco Pigment Fibre-Tip Pen.
I also got Necco wafers, which promptly disappeared into the hands of my hovering roommate.
Faber-Castell Ecco Pigment Pen Fibre-Tip Pen
I am a huge, huge fan of Faber-Castell, so as soon as the pen fell out of the package, I was hyped.
I've gotten really into working with ink pens the last few years, and Faber-Castell owns my soul. Even just doodling with these pens is satisfying, but they are especially nice for large projects as well. The ink always dries relatively fast, and will hold with other mixed medias (even watercolor, which is a godsend with ink pens).
The pen is listed as a favourite for ArtSnacks, and it's understandable why. I've never had a pen from Faber-Castell that's broken or run dry too early, and the variety in sizes and colors they have is great.
The ArtSnacks shop currently doesn't carry any of the pens, but if you head on over to the official Faber-Castell store, I highly recommend picking up a full set!
Red Amsterdam Acrylic Ink and Princeton Brush
Anyone that knows me well enough is aware I'm basically a stranger to things such as watercolors, oils, and inks. However, being handed a bottle and brush has me excited to finally try it out!
The ink itself is very nice, and, being an entire bottle, I know it will last me a fair bit. While I'm personally not a huge fan of reds, the color is stunningly vibrant. I do a lot of line work with pens, so if you're also into that, I imagine this ink will do marvels for you. Royal Talens, the company that produces this ink, seems to have a wide variety of products in their inventory, so as this is claimed to be a new product (and possibly brand?) to ArtSnacks, I do expect to see more from them in the near future.
I'm also a big fan of the brush, especially considering it's designed to be used with mixed media! The fibers are soft but sturdy, and the brush is easy and comfortable to hold. I've also been needing to replace a few of my brushes for some time, so I was delighted to get this one.
ZIG Cocoiro Letter Pen
This is a brand I've never seen, but was intrigued from the start. The Menu card ArtSnacks provided states that the pen is created so you are able to "choose each part separately to match your mood", and upon further investigation, appears that there are a number of combinations available! The pen bodies and refills appear to really only be sold separately.
The pen tip incredibly fine, which is something I'm not used to. But with a little practice, lines are smooth and allow for tinier, intricate details. These are not waterproof, so I won't be using this with any other medium, but they are very much suited for writing and calligraphy (which, conveniently, seems to be in time with the release of LetteringSnacks!)
All in all, I'm very satisfied with this month's box, as well as completely supportive of the subscription itself! Both of my boxes have been delivered quickly and in tact, and both have included interesting and useful supplies. If you're an artist, or know of someone who is, I highly recommend giving them a shot.
If you're interested in signing up for ArtSnacks, you can do so here! Let them know you heard about them from us, too!