S&A Magazine Issue 10 – Volume 2
February 2022 Issue
Issue 10 – Volume 2
Table of Contents
- Editor’s Letter
- Holiday of the Month
- Sketchbook Page
- Quote of the Month
- Drawing Prompt
- Sustainable Fashion
- Main Article
Thank You for an Amazing Volume 2!
It’s been yet another 10 issues, another 10 months, and another amazing volume— and so much has happened in that time. If we were to describe this volume, we first would certainly be able to think of our ups and downs. However, overall, the main thing about Volume 2 that jumps out to us is how different it is in comparison to our previous volume. Since Volume 1, we’ve added the Quote of the Month, Sketchbook Page, and Holiday of the Month. We’ve also allowed ourselves to get more creative with our work than before. If you will remember, in the last volume, we would only stick to one color for each cover to help create a theme. While this was a nice, orderly way of doing things, it felt limiting. So in Volume 2, we decided to get rid of our limits and start doing things more creatively. We decided on a simple theme for this volume’s covers— two-toned backgrounds. It allowed us to tie everything together in a way that still allowed the focal point of our drawing to shine. We also applied the concept of creative liberty into our other work by sprinkling in more of our own photos of nature and graphics created using other tools like Canva. Allowing ourselves to loosen up let us do more of what we wanted and resulted in a volume that was anything but perfect— but also anything but boring.
When thinking about our new website and volume for S&A Magazine, we went in with optimism and high hopes. We were determined to get as many readers and subscribers as possible. This goal leads to some of our more tedious projects involving the magazine. One of them was when we came up with the idea to send a large email campaign to schools and teachers to get more readers. This entailed an incredibly extensive spreadsheet filled with countless emails that we would try to send out in waves. It was a crazy project looking back on it now, but it did still lead to some new readers. Besides our email campaign, we also started posting our content on Pinterest to get more traffic from social media. Branching out allowed us to film videos centered around our content, which we both ended up enjoying. Trying out new things like this also lead to our magazine being recognized by The Social Institue, giving us the opportunity to be interviewed and featured in an article! So in that sense, we both feel like our magazine is on the right track to keep growing and we are quite proud of how far we’ve gone. However, we know now, more than ever, that it’s not about how many people read our content because we have always enjoyed the process of making our issues come to life. Even paired with other factors that make our schedules tight, it’s always been fun to take a break to work on making content we enjoy.
Above is a video we made for our Pinterest page!
S&A Magazine has always been a huge motivator for us to draw, take photos, and write. It is completely normal for us to feel a lack of motivation or run out of inspiration. However, having readers like you to make content for is a great way to battle any art block or lack of motivation we may be experiencing. Finishing a section for an issue or hitting that publish button never gets old— every time, we feel such a rush of excitement. Working on S&A Magazine has seriously been the greatest passion project we have done together as best friends.
Although we’re very dedicated to our magazine, our lives have been (and will continue to get) busy. We were initially planning for our magazine to be published every other month for Volume 3, but as of now, we don’t have a clear plan on what the future of S&A Magazine will look like in relation to our changing lives. Whatever the future holds for our magazine, know that we love making content that inspires readers like you to be creative and kind. S&A Magazine has been a dream come true for us and we are so grateful for your support.
Pictures from all the different seasons we worked on Volume 2
Our favorite nature photos in contrasting colors
Holiday of the Month
Valentine’s day is a widely celebrated holiday where people celebrate romance and love, but surprisingly, that is not how Valentine’s Day was celebrated when it began. It’s actually a memorial of a man named Saint Valentine, worshiped by the Catholic Church. There are many legends surrounding Saint Valentine, but the most common is one in which Valentine was a priest in third-century Rome and performed marriages for lovers who were forbidden from it. (At the time, it was against the law for soldiers to marry). At the end of the legend, Saint Valentine was supposedly beheaded by Emperor Claudius II.
How to celebrate
Though this holiday is connected to the Catholic Church, it is generally not a religious celebration. There are numerous ways to celebrate this holiday, which is why we have provided you with a list of how you can celebrate.
- Write a love letter to yourself
This may sound a bit odd, but writing a love letter to yourself is actually a great way to make yourself feel better and boost your self-esteem. In the letter, reflect on all of your accomplishments and the strengths you possess that have helped you reach these goals.
- Make chocolate fondue
Chocolate fondue is a classic and delicious romantic treat. To make this, melt chocolate in a bowl and dip strawberries in it, or buy a fondue kit online.
- Listen to romantic songs
Though many songs are romantic, pick out your favorite and make a playlist of them to listen to on valentine’s day.
- Make a flower bouquet
Nothing is more romantic than a bouquet of gorgeous flowers. Cut some from your yard or neighborhood and put them in a vase in your house. If you can’t find any flowers, try going to a florist and buying a freshly made bouquet.
- Make a list of things you love
Valentine’s day doesn’t necessarily have to be about romance! Make a list of things (or people) around you that you love and you are grateful for. This can be a good way to be optimistic about the world around you or to unwind from a hard situation.
Although Valentine’s Day is centered around love, it doesn’t have to be centered around romance. Use this as a day to love and take care of yourself, because sometimes we all need a day to unwind from the stress of the world around us. (Read more to see our view on self-love in the Main Article!)
Drawing of Succulents in a Cermic Bunny Pot
For this month’s sketchbook page, I decided to look to my windowsill for inspiration! And what do I see? An interesting bunny ceramic that holds succulents— the perfect reference. I felt like simply sketching out this comically long bunny in pencil. Although more simple, I am pretty happy with the sketch.
Quote of the Month
This month’s quote represents perseverance. Life has many challenges, but remember that you are capable of facing them and that things will eventually pass.
These DIY stickers are so fun and easy to make. You can literally turn anything you want into your very own sticker in just a few simple steps. I went for a lemon sticker because I thought it would be cool to make. You can send a picture of your own stickers to firstname.lastname@example.org!
What You’ll Need
- Cardstock Paper
- A pencil
- Markers or any other coloring material
- Parchment Paper
- Clear Packing Tape
- Sketch out your design in pencil
- Color in your design (I decided not to erase my sketch to give my sticker a cool look)
- Cut out your design, leaving a bit of a border
- Lay down some parchment paper and place on a strip of tape
- Then, put the stickers on top of the tape and place on another piece of tape
- Cut out your design
A Drawing Inspired by Architecture
This month’s drawing prompt was inspired by architectural designs found throughout different time periods and places. I added creative brush styles to add depth and texture to the drawing. If you would like to make a drawing, you can send a picture of it to email@example.com for a chance to be featured in our next issue!
Below: Inspiration for the drawing prompt. Photos from unsplash.com
An Outfit Styled with Boden
Boden is a sustainable fashion brand that produces wonderful clothes for anyone. Boden focuses on reducing their carbon footprint to create their clothes. An estimated 617 million liters of water were saved by Boden last year thanks to their more efficient sourcing of cotton. They make most of their clothes and fabrics with recycled materials and they encourage their customers to fully use the clothes they purchase. In addition to that, Boden has also donated 1.5 million pounds plus clothes to charities such as The Charlie Walter Trust and British baby banks.
Self Love and Acceptance
The pressure in our modern world is intense— and it is completely normal to feel it. It’s easy to feel worse than your peers when you think you are not achieving as much and your perspective is different.. ‘Marching to the beat of your own drum’ can be a lot harder and more daunting than it sounds. Our desire to fit in and feel just as accomplished as others can lead us to change ourselves. However, it is important to realize that, at the end of the day, you are the only person who is in control of your life and the first step you can take to make things better is to love yourself.
Reflect on What you are Proud of
Let’s face it— in the moment, it is very easy to put yourself down when you feel like you are not achieving much. When living in a world that praises constant work and goal-chasing, burnout and a lack of motivation can feel like a burden. Personally, I’ve felt this about my art progression. I’ve experienced some pretty mentally-draining art block that has made me lose a lot of motivation to draw. (Of course, S&A Magazine is a great outlet for me to help deal with this!) Because of a lack of motivation to draw, I’ve noticed that I have not been improving as much as I’d like it, which only makes me feel worse. However, whenever I take the time to look back on my older art in previous issues, I feel much better about myself! Sometimes looking at the past is a great motivator because your progress can be a lot more visible and obvious.
Think About What Makes you Unique
Every human on this planet is unique in their own way. That’s what makes us diverse and adaptable creatures that are able to work together to make an impact on the world we live in. This is fairly straightforward, but making a list of things that make you unique can be very helpful, especially when you feel like you don’t fit in. The things on your list might include personality traits or physical characteristics. For example, you could write about your unique sense of style, your kindness, or your humor. Whatever you feel like makes you your own person!
Allow Yourself to Make Mistakes
Everyone makes mistakes. If we didn’t, we’d all be robots! Don’t beat yourself up over something you did. Instead, think of your mistake as a learning lesson. Even the stupid decisions we make can be learned from. Acknowledging what you did and accepting that it is okay to make a mistake prevents you from making the same mistake again.
Convert your Energy
It’s in our nature to tend to look at the negative aspects of a situation. We expect excellence. So when we get something besides perfection, it is easy to get upset with ourselves. Even the most easy-going people can feel the pressure of messing up. This can lead to negative attitudes and self-talk (which only makes things worse). So to prevent falling into that trap, try to catch yourself the next time you think “I’m so stupid” or “How could I have messed that up” and try saying something nice to yourself instead. Of course, this is not an easy switch and it takes a lot of effort to change your mindset. However, it is very worth it to be more positive than negative.
Listen to Your Body
Your body knows best. When you feel tired and burnt out, take a break! Humans are not meant to constantly be working. We need 8 hours of sleep to be fully refreshed and ready to take on our daily tasks. Now, more than ever, we are taking in insane amounts of information every day. It is completely normal, and inevitable, to feel tired. Whenever this happens, please listen to your body and get some rest. Remember that it is best to eat 3 meals a day, drink lots of water, and get 8 hours of sleep. Once you follow these rules and start to pay more attention to your body rather than neglect it, you will instantly notice an amazing change and boost of energy!
In a time of constant comparison, self-love can be hard to find, but it’s actually much more important than you may think! Practicing self-love can benefit your well-being, productivity level, and even your health. Keep in mind that these aren’t the only ways you can practice self-love, in fact, there are many ways to love yourself! So next time you feel bad about yourself, take a break, reflect on how you feel, be yourself, and most importantly, listen to your gut.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Everyone has had chocolate chip cookies before, which is why I decided to put my own spin on them. These cookies are crispy on the edges but soft on the inside and are irresistibly delicious! If you’d like, you can try this recipe o and send us a picture at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Time: 20-25 minutes
Note: These cookies tend to be fairly large, so keep that in mind when making them. Also, if you would like to serve more people, I suggest doubling the recipe.
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1 and 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter (melted)
- 1 1/4 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 350° F (Approximately 176° C)
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl or stand up mixer, combine sugar and and butter.
- Add in the vanilla extract and egg, mixing until the batter has a fluffy consistency.
- In a separate bowl, combine salt, baking soda, and flour and gradually add them to the batter.
- Once the dough is a light brown color and not too runny, add the chocolate chips, keeping the mixer on low.
- Using a spoon or your hands to make balls of dough using about 3-4 tablespoons of batter for each.
- Bake cookies for 20-25 minutes or until the cookies are light brown in color.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature or serve immediately.