February 2018 ArtSnacks Artist Subscription Box

A few days ago I received the February 2018 ArtSnacks subscription box! I love getting these every month because it gives me a chance to try new art supplies I might not give a chance otherwise, and also challenges me to use the new supplies to create new, original artworks.

Here is what we got this month:

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  • 2 Sennelier French Artists’ Watercolor Tubes
  • Raphael Mini Precision Paint Brush
  • Faber-Castell Goldfaber Sketching Pencil, 2H
  • Sakura Pigma Micron PN Pen
  • Sweethearts Candy Hearts
  • A bonus sheet of Fabriano Artistico Watercolor Paper (shown below)

Of all the items included, my favorites are definitely the french watercolor tubes. Together, these two small tubes of paint retail for $23.50…so they had better be good! I am not a huge fan of the sketching pencil because it is very light and I prefer a darker lead when sketching. The paintbrush is very nice, but it is so short, it kind of annoys me when painting with it. The Micron pen is fine, but nothing thrilling to me.

Every month, ArtSnacks encourages recipients to try to create new artworks using only the materials in that month’s box, which I did, so here are a couple I came up with. The first uses the bonus sheet of watercolor paper that came in the box, which was bookmark shaped:

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I also made an expressionistic ACEO art trading card using the supplies:

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As always, these artworks will be listed for sale on my Ebay store, along with my other art currently for sale!

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New Year’s in The Twilight Zone

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I’m still struggling with this nasty cold I caught, so I am spending pretty much all day laying on the couch or in bed. Since it is New Year’s Eve, I am watching The Twilight Zone marathon on Syfy Channel, which has pretty much become a yearly ritual for me. I love this show and wish it was on more often.

Other than watching that all day, I don’t have much in the way of plans. I doubt I will even stay up to watch the ball drop tonight or anything like that. I’m not sure if it is just the illness or the depression, but I haven’t felt like doing anything this week and the weekend is pretty much proceeding the same way. I haven’t even been making art, which is kind of sad, especially considering all the cool new art supplies I got for Christmas. I am sharing an artwork I made right after Christmas while playing with some new acrylic pens I got. Hopefully I’ll be motivated to do more soon.

Sick Day

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Yesterday I started coming down with a really bad cold that is absolutely kicking my butt today. Definitely time to take a sick day. So, right now I’m curled up on the couch with lots of blankets and comforters, and my new (incredibly soft) Eeyore plush stuffed animal, which was my favorite Christmas gift this year (see above picture). I might just have to stay here all day and watch Disney Channel. Any other adults out there that still love to watch Disney Channel? A couple of their newer shows I really like include “Andi Mack” and “Stuck in the Middle”. I was psyched they played a “Wizards of Waverly Place” marathon on the day after Christmas too! Ok, enough Disney nerding out I suppose…

Halloween Watercolor and Sticker Collage Art

I may be almost 35-years-old (my birthday is October 27th), but I still love stickers! Glittery stickers, cute stickers, puffy stickers, shiny stickers, character stickers…I like them all! Sometimes I take that love of them and try to integrate it into my artworks, mostly in ACEO art trading card collages that can also be used as bookmarks, which I sell on my Ebay store. I figure it is a simple, fun way to share my favorite stickers with the world.

I don’t just stick stickers on paper and be done with it though, I try to create eye-catching designs and often spruce them up with painting or other color-boosting techniques. Here are a few recent Halloween ones I’ve made with a combination of watercolor paints and stickers:

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My new passion for ACEO artwork

Lately I have really gotten into the practice of collecting, creating and selling ACEO artwork (art card editions and originals). In case you don’t know what an ACEO is, it is a little trading card with original artwork or prints of original artwork on it. It is right around the same size as your typical baseball card (2.5 by 3.5 inches). Many artists make and sell these tiny masterpieces now. The thing I like best about ACEO’s is that they are small, so they don’t take up much space and they are fairly inexpensive, so it is an easy and cost effective way to collect original artworks. Even better, many of these cards have become highly collectible, so although you may only spend a few bucks on a card today, it could be worth a lot in the future! Buying these little artworks is also a great way to support independent artists. They do sell little frames and easels for artworks of this size, so if you want to display your artwork or give it as a gift, that is no problem.

Below are a couple of ACEO artworks I have done recently that are now for sale on ebay, keep in mind that these are only the size of an average trading card. Doing a lot of detail on something that small takes a steady hand and patience, but it is a lot of fun too! If you would like to see more of my art for sale (including other ACEO’s) please visit my ebay page!

"Heart Energy" mixed media on paper.

“Heart Energy” mixed media on paper.

"Yellow Dress" mixed media on paper.

“Yellow Dress” mixed media on paper.

Review of “Walk Softly, You’re Steppin’ On My Heart!” Poetry Collection

Walk Softly Book Cover As a poet myself, I am always happy to find great poetry collections by other authors. Unfortunately, in our fast-paced society, it seems that poetry has somewhat fallen by the wayside, but I feel that there is truly no more artistic, beautiful way to express true feelings than by putting them into verse. The poetry collection I am reviewing today, “Walk Softly, You’re Steppin’ On My Heart!”, written by Christian and children’s author Pat Brannon, is truly a heartfelt, touching collection of inspiring and thoughtful reflections.

The poems in this collection are undeniably Christian, full of faith and trust in a higher power, but at the same time, the poet does not ignore the rough side of life or the doubts that tend to creep in as we navigate the human life. The poems are by turns sad, philosophical, joyful, thought-provoking and always full of grace and forgiveness for a world that desperately needs a helping hand from above.

As I neared the end of this collection, I realized that it truly takes a special gift to be able to reach the human heart on as many levels as Ms. Brannon manages to do with this book. It also takes a special person to share their faith in such an open manner, without becoming overbearing or judgemental. This is a book I will definitely hold on to for those days when I need a little pick-me-up (which happens quite often in this crazy, mixed-up world).

This collection would make a great gift for someone in need of a little encouragement and inspiration. Of course, it would make a fine gift to give yourself as well! For more information about this book and how to order a copy for yourself, please visit the author’s website, www.patbrannon.com (for ordering information, just click on the “books” link on the left side of the screen).

Get your kids an awesome, one-of-a-kind gift!

Looking for something to get your kids that they will love and can keep for years?  An author signed picture book is a gift that is personal, exciting and fun for kids.  Most kids are thrilled to know that an author actually sent and even signed a book just for them.

For that reason, I am offering all potential customers the opportunity to buy a signed copy of my picture book “Ode to Icky” and have it shipped to them anywhere in the US or Canada for only $10!  This is quite a savings from the normal price to obtain a signed copy!  This deal only lasts from now until Christmas, so if you would like to order a signed copy of my latest book at this bargain price, please contact me by email at Shojobeatgirl@live.com or simply leave a message on this post and I will contact you!

If you would like to learn more about “Ode to Icky”, feel free to check out the product description and customer reviews on Amazon.