Making Midwest Launching Creative Festival this Summer

Making Midwest is raising its flag even higher when it comes to highlighting the creative talent of the Midwest. From its quarterly gatherings, the organization is branching into two efforts: online Maker Series videos and the inaugural Making Midwest Fest on July 29-30, 2017.

Just as creator Matt Vojacek initially started Making Midwest to build a space for creatives to gather that he didn’t see happening elsewhere, so does the festival aim to be its own unique experience.

The biggest thing for me and the rest of the team is to really make this something that isn’t like other types of design festivals,” Vojacek says. 

He’s bucking the echo-chamber that is sometimes created from only learning within an industry. Making Midwest Fest will pull on experiences and creative processes from a wide span of disciplines – from the designers, illustrators, animators and video production folks who have primarily been attending events, to chefs and more. Vojacek wants to spend the next few months making connections to round out the creative fields that will be present at the two-day festival. 

While exact details are still being refined, the goal is to get creatives who wouldn’t normally bump into each other to spend time together.

I want people to hear different opinions on things and be able to formulate their own opinions based on what they’re hearing,” Vojacek says. 

That extends to getting many of the creative groups that also exist in Columbus involved in the festival. Vojacek sees it as organizations not in competition with each other, but wants to create sort of a highlight reel of what exist for those that aren’t familiar or haven’t been to Columbus or the Midwest.

Attendees can also expect more than just a sit and listen format, as workshops and vendor activities will also be included. Headliner Aaron Draplin will round out the festival experience. Vojacek selected the Detroit-born designer one, because he does good work, and two, “His attitude and how much he does for the community just by talking about this process and his work very freely; he’s very transparent.” 

Making Midwest Fest will be held at the Garden Theater in Short North. Details on ticket prices (which Vojacek aims to make as affordable as possible) and a full speaker lineup is expected to be announced on March 15.

Until then, Making Midwest has posted the first in its video Maker Series featuring Marshall Shorts of Soulo Theory and Creative Control Fest. The documentary-style videos, which will be released every two to three months, represent an opportunity not only for the creative being featured, but for the videographer to feature their style as well.

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