So I recently attended a virtual event called CoCoVid, which was a quite amazing way to be introduced to the world of CosTube, which is apparently what they call the subsection of YouTube dedicated to costume creation. If you are at all interested in cosplay or historical costuming, I would recommend a quick Google for either of those two things, and wish you a fun adventure falling down that rabbit hole.
A comment someone made on a Discord server I joined as a consequence of that experience got me thinking about “making” and what it means. Someone mentioned being a writer but that not being a “craft.” My argument was that they don’t say “practicing your craft” about writing for no reason. (I’m not going to get into how craft/crafting and make/making are connected, as it’s intuitive to me.)
I ascribe to the definition of making that I’ve heard Adam Savage use (probably on a pod cast or a Tested video on YouTube, possibly both). I’m paraphrasing, but the basic gist of it is that if you start with nothing but an idea and you then create a thing (a dress, an object, a book, a computer program) then you are a maker, because you made a thing that didn’t exist before.
I really love this way of thinking about making.
I am a maker.
I write stories and create characters, worlds, and books from nothing at all.
I use cardboard, scissors, tape, and whatever other supplies I can get a hold of to fashion custom storage solutions or whatever else strikes my fancy.
I take ingredients and the memory of a dish and I play around until I’ve made that delicious stir-fry I used to get back in college.
I fiddle around on a computer to get a design settled and then use the laser cutter at the university I work for to make the fanciest of fancy popsicle sticks with writing on them.
I follow recipes and adapt them and make the most amazing cheesecakes in cake, pie, and cupcake forms.
I take fabric and thread (and often follow instructions and patterns) and I create a dress, or a shirt, or a reusable mask.
There’s so much joy in creation, and I get that joy no matter what kind of creating I’m doing. Whether you think of yourself as a maker or not, if you create things, go forth and create. If that creation gives you joy, I hope you’ll share it as much as possible. Being able to take joy in the things you do and share that joy is one of the best things in the world.