Last month I released a new product in my Shopify store – the art project box. I wanted to explain a little bit about how it came to be, why I’m excited about it, and why I opted to create a separate Shopify storefront instead of the “buy now” buttons I was using. (Update – Nov 2022 – Shopify store and thus the art project boxes are no more)

What is it?

The art project box started as a way for me to make my art more affordable AND to offer an option to the DIYers out there. My art miniatures are resin casts that I create in my studio. Then I paint them with professional quality artist paints and sell the finished products.  After one of my classes at the Travis Mills Foundation where I teach an art tile painting class, I had the idea to do the same thing but with the art minis! I wanted to bring the ability to create to more people.  My puffins have been a huge hit so that is why “Stud Puffin” was the first art project box I launched.  It does a few things, or at least it’s intended to do a few things. With the included instructions, it provides an art lesson for home schooled students, a fun project for kids/adults who just like doing arts/crafts, and it can be a launch point for further exploration.  For example – from the simple resin blank and the process of painting it, a lesson in the animal could ensue. Followed by an ecology and ecosystem project. Or a color theory project since you have to mix red and yellow to get the orange for the beak… which could branch off into a math class about fractions and percentages. It helps build fine motor skills by having to paint the little details with a small/thin handled brush.  There are literally DOZENS of hidden lessons in this “simple” art project. And at its core, that’s what it is – an art project.

Basic Puffin - Craft Paint (6)
Basic Puffin - Craft Paint (9)
Basic Puffin - Craft Paint (35)

Suggested Uses

As I mentioned above, there are all kinds of different options with this art project box:

  • In can be in addition to/in support of home school curriculum to help branch and integrate subjects.
  • An additional learning tool to supplement public arts education.
  • As a way to introduce children to art collecting and them understanding how much work goes into an original piece of art (art appreciation).
  • A simple art project for the kiddo.
  • A simple art project for YOU – let’s face it, adult coloring is IN!
  • A fun and unique gift giving option for those who like to gift experiences (there is the option to upgrade to 1:1 instruction so you get a virtual art class with yours truly).

Back to School – What’s Up Next

My son starts back to school on Thursday, 30 Aug 2018. In honor of him and all the other kiddos going back to school – something I celebrate honestly – I will be adding new additions to these art project boxes as quickly as I can.  George Giraffe Jr will be making his debut in the coming weeks, as well some very basic bisqued ceramic ornament boxes!  The ornament boxes will be at an even more affordable price point and will not come with the step by step tutorial/instruction manual like the art minis do. If you haven’t already done so – make sure you’re signed up for my newsletter so that you can get notified when new products are released!

Why Shopify

I almost forgot to tell you why you have to go to a separate link/page to access my Shopify store!  When I first started using Shopify, I was going the most economical route – embedding “buy now” buttons under pictures of my sculptures.  When I made the decision to create and sell these art project boxes, I wanted an easier way to do that.  I also wanted to reward repeat customers through a loyalty rewards program.  The best (and most economical) way for me to do that, was to create an actual Shopify storefront page. So I upgraded my service package with shopify in order to be able to offer these loyalty rewards.  The rewards structure has been set up so that basically for every 10 basic art project boxes a customer purchases, they earn one free.  But the credit doesn’t have to be used for project boxes.  I have it set up so that the customer (maybe even you?) earns points for every purchase.  At certain levels, you unlock coupons for various amounts.  The customer can then choose when to use their coupon code! I value those who support me and my small business, and this was something I really wanted to be able to do for my supporters. For the slight increase in annoyance (I know..) of having to open a separate tab to shop, I truly have done my best to make it worth your while.

Infographic with a collage of three pictures featuring a resin puffin and acrylic paint with text overlay. Text overlay is title of the blog post.