What creative tools matter most to you?

Cleveland, Ohio is home to the Weapons of Mass Creation Fest, an event intended to “inspire and enable the creative mind.” Rena was there this year to interview Lisa Congdon on stage (and vice versa) and enjoyed the festivities. There’s something good happening in Cleveland.

Photo borrowed from I am Emme

Photo borrowed from I am Emme

Makeshift Society also attended, in a way, as we were invited by Adobe to co-create a pop-up event. We focused on an area where both groups and the festival overlap: our mutual dedication to enabling creativity.

We asked people about their favorite creative tools: What tools matter most to you? More than 200 people took a minute to sketch their response both on paper and with Adobe Ideas on tablets. At the time we were considering the focus of our Kickstarter (3 days to go!), and the enthusiasm that came out of these drawings helped convince us that a tool library at Makeshift Brooklyn really was a good idea to carry forward.


With 22 drawings at WMC Fest, pencils and pens were the standout winner. Second place was filled with a series of 18 self portraits, or perhaps portraits of loved ones or other inspirational figures — though the only recognizable character was a Lego person named “Oliver”.


Anatomy was well represented with eyes (9), hands (7) and so many brains (16) that at least one zombie was attracted.


Consumables including music (16), alcohol in various forms (9), and stronger substances (4) also made an appearance. But then, so did pickles (1).


There were expressions of love for very specific features like the Pathfinder feature of Adobe Illustrator (1), the crop tool (1), and undo (2); as well as a more general appreciation of Wacom tablets (2), trackpads (2), and pink erasers (1). We want to know more about how a shovel (1) takes precedence in someone’s creative process, but when we saw another person praise spikes (1) our brows really went up!


Nature (3) was more popular than cities (2), but sleeping (1) tied with sitting on the toilet (1). So place matters too.

Thanks to Adobe for partnering with us on this project and to everyone who took a moment to draw their thoughts.

P.S. Note: at Makeshift we strongly believe that credit should be given where it is due. Not all of the drawings were signed, however, so we have not been able to attribute these lovely sketches. If you recognize something you submitted, please let us know so we can give you credit.