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production vs. consumption

edited November 2010
My brain has been spinning in circles lately about stuff that seems to be centered on a theme of "production vs. consumption" and I'm hoping you can help make some sense out of it for me, UHXers.

So, here's this kickstarter featured video about "the maker movement." Seems like the message of this so-called movement is: "Don't buy it! Make it yourself!" Which is great in theory, but, in general, making art/products usually takes a lot of time and money, right? And in order to continue making things, people need to buy your things, right? Usually, you need lots of people to buy your things. So makers rely on consumption/materialism in order to be a part of the anti-materialism movement. I don't get it. Unless people are repurposing products/materials to make new ones -- that seems to fit more with the ideology. And I'm not talking about knitting your own hat -- I'm thinking more about designing a "new product."

I've been on a total industrial design blog binge lately and I keep fantasizing about these products I would love to make and I just want to MAKE, MAKE, MAKE and I like that part of my brain. It's so fun and it feels healthy and alive. But then I think about the materials, and the poor earth and the need for people to buy these things (that aren't essential in any way) and I get deflated. I don't know how to reconcile creativity with "living simply" (i.e. nobody needs these egg pants by design glut -- and I would never buy them -- but I still love the concept/execution and have a strong urge to make products like this myself).

Any thoughts?



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