Nov 13, 2018

Getting Disruptive With WeMake

Design events in Portland are never short on inspiration. Some of the Conveyor team attended WeMake’s DISRUPT conference here in Portland a few weeks ago, and we’re excited to share our favorite takeaways.

Breaks Are Creativity’s Best Friend

Constant creative problem solving is exhausting. In order to create your best work, you should know when and how to pump the brakes. For example, if you’re hitting a creative block, try doing something unorthodox: Go on a walk, practice yoga, do your laundry, take a nap. Do the opposite of what you’re supposed to do and give your brain a break from stressing after a single solution. You just might find that in those moments of distraction, you find your creative spark.

Set Big, Ambitious Goals

Illustrator and WeMake Keynote speaker Loveis Wise told us to “create the work you want to see in the world.” She also showed us some amazing thought maps that laid out her goals, and how she got herself there. As a company with “awesome” in our core values, we were inspired by her drive and encourage all of our readers to be fearless in your goal-setting. Let your passion drive you. Think big and share that spark with the world. Unless you’re honest with where you want to be, you’ll have a hard time getting there — or even getting started.


Creative types are often faced with a distinct challenge: how to make a really cool thing that nobody else has made before. It’s not only subjective, it’s downright arbitrary — depending on your client, “cool” could mean a million and one different things, and the sheer number of choices can be paralyzing. Enter paper sculptor and animator Tommy Perez, and his brilliant idea: Procrastimaking.

Defined loosely as “the art of doing other creative stuff when you’re supposed to be brainstorming,” procrastimaking frees us from the shame of doing things other than That One Big Project. In fact, it embraces the side tasks, and invites you to engage creatively with those as a way to continually keep your thoughts flowing. Make something else. Oil the creative engine. Doodle, build, write, ideate. Like taking breaks mentioned above, this is a great way to come back to a project refreshed and full of ideas.

Disrupting A Holiday Card

Following the conference, we challenged ourselves to put these ideas into practice. The results were amazing, and amusing, and here’s how mine went:

I was tasked with designing several holiday cards for both clients and Conveyor. Keeping our disrupt lessons in mind, I gave myself a goal: I wasn’t just going to design a holiday card. I was going to design a holiday card maker. Then, with a goal in place, I promptly started...procrastimaking. I doodled holiday designs, and as my doodles multiplied, I started to categorize them: traditional, clever, dark, humorous, romantic, crafty.

But how to turn these categories into a useful tool? A brief walk and stretch later, I had my solution: a fortune teller to help you choose a card based on color and mood.

The results not only provided great options for a number of holiday cards, we made a fun video out of it as well. So don’t be afraid to disrupt your creative process, you never know what will happen!


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