SketchBOX November 2023

I got my wish for a more interesting colour scheme with November’s box. In fact, there were lots of colours!

After watching the SketchBox instructional video, I felt the most intriguing part of the box was the circle-making device. But after I viewed a few YouTubers opening the box and testing its contents, my most anticipated art supply shifted to the dot pens. They looked very intriguing.

The box arrived a little earlier than usual. I did my usual swatching and testing. I drew a circle using the device as carefully as I could, then used a cup to trace an accurate circle close to the same size, and the first one was waaay out. Which is a shame, because it is a cool idea. The Faber Castell and Marabu markers bled easily on the paper, but I don’t know if that was the pens’ fault or the paper – and the paper is made by Marabu too so I can only assume their pens are meant to be used with it. I received a small pack of the Marabu markers from The Paletteful Pack I ordered early in the year and didn’t like them much for making art, and I didn’t change my mind on this second try. However, having two thicknesses of nib will make them handier than Sharpies around the house.

The theme for the box was mandalas, and the prompt was ‘intricate”. I figured I’d make lots of circles and try all the markers, similar to what’s in the SketchBox instructional video. After that, I took my favourite items from the box and drew a mandala, using my 40 year old school Math-o-Mat to draw out accurate base pencil line work.

It was fun, but overall just okay as a box. I’m not much of a marker user and the aesthetic was more ‘doodley’ than ‘arty’. But I also figure not every SketchBox is going to contain the sorts of art supplies that suit me. It’s all about trying new things, after all, and in this case the dot pens certainly fulfilled that promise.

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