I had never heard of the term “maker culture” until mid-last year. Curious to find out what it meant, I attended a few events across the city geared at DIY types. First there was Mozilla’s Maker Party, which is a global campaign to teach the inner workings of the web. Then, at the Toronto Mini Maker Faire, I signed up for an introduction to 3D design workshop run by MakeLab and produced my first 3D print. When the holiday season arrived, City of Craft and Vendor Queens were hosting meet-the-maker craft fairs and community art markets showcasing products that local independent designers created. It wasn’t easy to find these makers groups before. Some were professionals within the art, design, science and technology realms, while many were self-taught hobbyists. Even though I am not part of the maker scene, what inspired me most was seeing other people with little training displaying their passion projects.
You can make websites. You can make apps. You can make robots. You can make games. You can make music. You can make films. You can make books. You can make cards. You can make posters. You can make clothes. You can make accessories. You can make food. You can make a mess. You can make friends who share similar interests or simply find people who were already making the things you’d like to make.
And making matters because it’s about showing and discovering what you can do and not waiting for permission to do it. (Or in some cases, building something or else it won’t ever exist.) Everyone can learn how to create. That, I think, is what maker culture is all about.