October ArtSnacks Vs SketchBox

Thanks to Denise Hillburn (my mother) for the gift of ArtSnacks for the year!  SketchBox Basic subscription purchased by me out of personal funds.  If you would like to help support this blog, and continue posts like this, please consider donating to my Paypal, or contributing to my Patreon.  Future unboxings and reviews are unlocked to the public at the $15 level each month, but backers have access regardless of funds raised.  Posts like this are only possible through the support of my Backers, so if you enjoy this content, please check it out and consider joining.

This unboxing and overview was brought to you thanks to the generosity of my backers on Patreon, and was sponsored by 7" Kara,Volume 1.  7" Kara is an ongoing children's watercolor comic set in rural Louisiana, and follows the adventures of tiny Lilliputian Kara as she discovers humans, explores the back yard, and befriends a kitten.  Volume 1 is available now in the Natto-shop, just in time for Christmas!

We're nearing the end of our ArtSnacks Vs. SketchBox year of unboxings.  I plan on ending this series in January, but if you enjoy it, and would like to see it continue, there are a few ways you can accomplish that.  You can write to ArtSnacks and SketchBox and let them know how much you value my content, especially my reviews.  You can also join the Patreon community and make your voice heard.

Special September Thanks To My Patreon Backers

Please note:  I have linked backer webcomics/blogs when I have access to them.  If you are a backer who would like to have your project linked, please get in contact with me.

Andrew Benedict
C. Ellis
Boss Goose
Heidi Black
Mary Catherine
Virginia Williams
Wayne Norris
Michael Suriano

Previous SketchBox Vs. ArtSnacks
January- Winner: ArtSnacks
February- Winner:  SketchBox
March- Winner: ArtSnacks
April- Winner: ArtSnacks
May- Winner: ArtSnacks
June- Winner: SketchBox
July- Winner:  SketchBox
August- Winner: SketchBox
September- Winner: SketchBox

SketchBox: $25mo/$240 yr
ArtSnacks: $20mo/$200 yr


This Month's Brands:
Liquitex (ColArts)

The Unboxing:

The Overview:

Inside October ArtSnacks

The Card

The Card Reads:

Here's what's on the Menu for October:
The Midnight Snack

Special Release Muted Collection: Liquitex Professional INK!
$8.95 retail
Limited Edition ArtSnacks Exclusive
Liquitex is only releasing a limited supply of it's Special Release Muted Collection:  Liquitex Professional INK! and as an ArtSnacks subscriber, you're one of the first to get it.  This water-resistant ink is extremely fluid, so it's easy to use with both brushes and dip pens.  It's also fast-drying, so it wont slow you down when you want to try layering techniques.  There are five colors in this exclusive collection.  Which one did you get?

Uni-Ball Signo White Gel Pen
$3.75 retail
Staff Favorite  The Uni-Ball Signo White Gel Pen provides a silky flow of highly opaque ink.  This pen will perform especially well on tinted or black paper.  Try layering it over other inks, once they have dried.  You'll find that this ink does not fade as it dries, so you won't be drawing over and over on the same linesto get a strong white highlight.

Copic Gasenfude Brush Pen
New Product The Copic Gasenfude Brush Pen was created with sumi-e (East Asian brush painting) artists in mind.  It's also great for calligraphy and cartooning.  Filled with water-based pigment ink, this pen features a super-fine point that makes this tool even more flexible.  If you have Copic markers in your collection, you can use this brush pen with them- the ink is compatible so the colors will not bleed.

Lauren Series 4350 Watercolor Brush By Princeton Brush
$5.75 retail
Princeton Brush is known for its quality and affordability.  Their experts have developed a variety of high-performing synthetic fibers for use with specific types of paint.  Your new Lauren Series 4350 Watercolor Brush was handmade from synthetic materials and is designed for use with watercolor paints.  We think you'll like the way this brush handles your new Liquitex Professional INK!

Inside the Box

Copic Gasenfude-
$7.49 retail, $5.99 on DickBlick, $6.37 on MarkerPop, $5.71 on OtakuFuel
  • Archival
  • 9 mm long bristles
  • 3.1 mm diameter at brush base
  • Water based, black pigment ink
  • Sturdy, genuine nylon bristles
  • Superfine point for detail work
  • Long, flexible bristles for dry-brush effects
  • Copic compatible ink (will not bleed with Copic markers)
(source: https://imaginationinternationalinc.com/copic/101/pens/)

The Gasenfude contains waterbased pigment ink that is archival and compatible with Copic Markers — which means the colors won't bleed. The sturdy, flexible, 9 mm long nylon bristles end in a super-fine point for detail work.

(source: http://www.dickblick.com/products/copic-gasenfude-brush-tip-pen/)

Liquitex Muted Colors Ink!- I received the Muted Pink
Retail Price: $8.95 retail, $6.01 on DickBlick , regular colors are cheaper

  • Part of a multi acrylic product collection.
  • Liquid acrylic ink for use with brushes or dip pens
  • Available in 5 colors- Muted Violet, Muted Turquoise, Muted Pink, Muted Grey, Muted Green (reminds me of Jerry's ...Shades of Gray acrylics and oils) (http://www.liquitex.com/muted-collection-colors/)

Liquitex Inks are extremely fluid, water resistant, permanent and so lightfast they’ll go down in history. Ideal for airbrushing, watercolor effects and screen-printing, you can water the ink down, stamp it, or use it seamlessly with any other Liquitex product.
(source: http://www.liquitex.com/muted-collection-sets/)

Uni Signo white gel pen
  • Opaque Ink
  • Approx .8mm line
  • Archival
  • Great for corrections or highlights on markers, inks
$3.75 retail, $6.90 for 3 on Amazon , $2.50 on Jetpens for 1

Princeton Lauren 4 Round
Synthetic, golden taklon, considered a 'value brush'
$5.75 retail, $3.30 Art Supply Warehouse , not yet widely available

MSRP Total: $25.94
Lowest Retail Total: $17.52

My Thoughts:

I am pretty sure ArtSnacks has a deal with Princeton-by the end of this year, I'll probably have a round in all of their lines.

I'm most excited about the Liquitex Muted Ink and the Copic Gasenfude. The Gasenfude has been on my to review list for awhile- I held off purchasing one because I have a huge backlog of products I've yet to review.


This Month's Brands Are:

Inside October SketchBox

The Cards:

The Cards Read:

October Basic Box

Tombow Dual Brush Pens- Portrait Set
Retail Price: $16.99
These are some of our favorite double-ended brush pens due to their versatility and value.  Two tips allow for broad strokes and pinpoint precision.  The nibs can also be dipped in water to create subtle color washes!

2x Zig Art and Graphic Twin Marker
Retail Price: $3.58 each

These markers are filled with a waterbased dye that is odorless and xylene-free.  This flexible rubber brush tip creates a variety of line and stroke sizes, while maintaining its spring and shape without fraying.  The fine-point (0.8mm) fiber tip is ideal for detail work, sketching, or finishing touches.

Chameleon Detail Pen
Retail Price: $4.99

Use the Chameleon Black Detail Pen for illustrating or outlining.  It is a a double-ended pen with two Fine Line nibs (0.6mm and 0.4mm).  The marker contains black dye-based ink that is permanent when dry and compatible with alcohol based inks.

We've added a lot of new items to our shop including past boxes so be sure to check it out at getSketchBox.com/shop

With the holidays fast approaching it's time to start thinking about gifts!  If you know someone who would love to receive SketchBox be sure to ignup by November so they can start receiving boxes in time for the holiday.  We're also hard at work on our next LIMITED EDITION HOLIDAY BOX which will have brand  new, limited edition, and exclusive items.

October Featured Artist
Fatma Sahem

My name is Fatma and I'm a graphic designer and an artist from beautiful sunny Dubai.  When I' not doing my job as a graphic designer, you will find me in a coffee shop or a corner somewhere sketching and drawing in my sketchbook.  I've always had a great love for art and drawing.  I recently started making youtube videos of my drawings and paintings, since they are my favorite type of videos to watch.  I also have an online shop where I sell most of my artworks please do check it out!
Check out more of my work on these platforms

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tomoko_x/
Youtube:  http://youtube.com/fatmashahem
Tumblr: http://fatmasahem.tumblr.com
Store: http://fatmasahem.storenvy.com
Website: http://fatmasahem.com

We're so thankful for the talent that Fatma shared with us.  if you'd like to get your art featured- email an example of your work to us at:

Inside the Box:

Tombow 6 Piece Portrait ABT markers (waterbased)
Retail Price: $16.99, $12.25 on DickBlick 
  • Waterbased
  • Twin Tipped- brush and bullet nib
  • Reviewed here

2 Zig Art and Graphic Twin Markers
Retail Price: $3.58 each, $2.86 openstock on DickBlick  also available in sets, $2.93 on Marker Supply
  • Waterbased
  • Dye Ink
  • Twin tipped- brush and .8mm bullet nib
  • Rubberfoam nib
  • Reviewed here

Chameleon Double Sided Detail Pen
Retail Price: $4.99, $6.43 with Amazon Prime , $4.95 on The Writing Pen Store
  • Dye Based according to card, Internet says it's pigment based, official site says it's dye based
  • Twintipped- .4mm and .6mm
  • Permanent when dry
  • Compatible with alcohol based Inks
  • Part of the Chameleon family of markers, which were reviewed here.

MSRP Total: $29.14
Lowest Retail Value: $22.92

My Thoughts

I was pretty excited to see such a sizable pack of decent quality waterbased markers in my SketchBox this month, and even more excited to see two of my favorite waterbased markers- the Zig Art and Graphic Twin.  When pitted head to head in reviews on this blog, I preferred the Art and Graphic Twin (link) to the Tombow ABT (link), and am regularly disappointed by the ABT's popularity over the Art and Graphic Twin.  It was really exciting to see SketchBox include both brands in this month's box- maybe more artists will fall in love with the Graphic Twin the way I have.

The Demonstration:

For an explanation of the photos below, please watch the above video.

Copic Gasenfude

Liquitiex Ink! Muted Pink

Princeton Lauren Synthetic White Brush

Uni Signo White Gel Pen

Tombow Dual Brush Pens

Zig Art and Graphic Twin Markers

Chameleon Detail Pen

Copic Gasenfude next to Pentel Kirari

Water-fastness.  The Copic Gasenfude is water safe after 1 hour of dry time

Testing Liquitex Ink! Muted Pink acrylic ink with a brush and with nibs.

Top:  Water and alcohol marker fastness tests with the Chameleon liner pen.  Note:  At no point is the Chameleon ever waterproof, making it a poor choice to include with waterbased markers, as it will lead to smearing.  Bottom: Blending and water tests with the Tombow ABT markers and the Zig Art and Graphic Twins. 

Adding Liquitex Muted Pink Ink to your Artistic Toolbox- Becca Hillburn

The above video is a demonstration where I use the included Liquitex Ink! to ink a piece in my ArtSnacks Inktober Denik notebook.  Although I had massive issues with the paper, I really enjoyed the color of the ink.  This test inspired the challenge piece.

The Challenge:

For October, I opted to combine my boxes into one challenge, as I felt the materials complimented one another well.

For this demonstration, please watch the above video.

Like this piece?  You can own the original!

The Premium Box:

SKETCHBOX-October 2016- Doodlebonez

Included in the October Premium SketchBox:
Spectra AD alcohol markers (4)
MSRP $5.15, $2.85 on Carpe Diem Markers 
Copic Sketch (2)
MSRP $7.99, $5.24 on DickBlick 
Ironlak Pump Action Permanent Ink Marker $6.85 on Ironlak Site, $7.50 on Bombing Science

MSRP: $43.43
Retail total: $28.73
SketchBox Premium: $35 per month + $5 shipping

The Verdict:

This month was a tough one, as both boxes were great.  I expected a stronger Inktober theme from Sketchbox, but waterbased markers like Tombow ABT and Zig Art and Graphic Twin do fall into the ink category.

Something I found surprising, and honestly a little insulting, is the Premium box features alcohol markers rather than waterbased.  Both types of markers have their selling points, and both have a place in an illustrator's studio- waterbased markers are in no way 'basic'.  That said, they do tend to be more affordable than alcohol based markers, and are something I strongly recommend to artists just starting out.

The Winner: SketchBox Basic

Other Resources:
Alcohol-based, Waterbase- What's the Difference
Watercolor Brushpen Review: Tombow ABT
Watercolor Brushpen Review: Zig Art and Graphic Twin

Find Me Elsewhere:
For Daily Updates: www.instagram.com/Nattosoup
To chat: www.twitter.com/Nattosoup
For more art tutorials, supply reviews, and con recaps: www.nattosoup.blogspot.com
For convention how-tos: www.howtobeaconartist.tumblr.com
To help support online art education: www.patreon.com/Nattosoup
For my portfolio: www.behance.com/Nattosoup
For digital downloads: www.gumroad.com/nattosoup
For physical goodies: www.nattosoup.com/products
For my comic: www.nattosoup.com/kara-comic


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