A Makeshift Farewell
Hello Makeshift Readers and Supporters,
I’m up late yet again, working the night shift of Makeshift tasks and to-dos. Past midnight at my home in Mexico City the phone doesn’t ring as much; the emails and WhatsApp notifications get less frequent. This has always been my sweet spot for Makeshift tasks when we’re down to the wire on upcoming print dates. Though this time it’s a different deadline, I realize I still subconsciously drift to thinking about where my core team is at at any given moment.
Melanie is likely awake at 1am, scanning her booked calendar for space, but responding fast to my messages. Alexia will be up in Greece soon, urging quicker responses out of me to bring sections of the mag to close, pushing some new idea, or clarifying if a recent message was real or a joke. Justin’s tech-heavy responses will arrive in bulk, which I will later—to his amusement—try to decode before I agree to anything. By 6:30am Matt Peters will be hunting for the right cat video and/or Spanglish pun to serve as an answer to my litany of requests thrown at him; he will soon divert to terse, cogent responses and quick action. Fellow early riser Maria will at first be cursing (me and) a similar laundry list of queries that arrived overnight. But—during a mid-morning break—will soon launch a multi-pronged rebuttal. Matt Prindible will be up later than me, pinning late-night critiques and insights to our editorial board. Gema will soon be up in Madrid, ready to take our English or Spanish digital chatter and synthesize it into smooth, highly readable design.
Makeshift has always been a passion project about a niche topic, run in a unique way, told in a unique voice. So these late night kerfuffles, or the 11pm (or 6am) email comes in from Kabul, Lagos, Bangkok, Erbil, Shenzhen, Istanbul, Monrovia—or somewhere else currently in workday hours—have always been fun. We’ve always been stoked to scribble back with notes on how to stay on course, resolve a problem, or make the story fit our style.
Our central goal with the Quarterly, from Day One was to showcase people-driven daily creativity. From all corners of the world, we wanted to put the characters, not the writers, first, and highlight their technological, entrepreneurial, or otherwise ingenious work… And I am pleased to say we kept this up til the end.
Which is to say that—as a team, and for a variety of reasons—we have decided it is time to move on from the core operations of our quarterly magazine. When we started, we didn’t even know for sure if we would make it past Issue 1. But we did. And 15 issues later, we are still proud to look back on each of those issues, and the globally connected work that went into them.
Our passionate Makeshift crew isn’t breaking up, and our mission won’t entirely end with this transition. Some digital content, including video, will continue to live on, and even grow again one day soon. We will open up some of our older back issues over the coming weeks and months, so please stay tuned to our Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram and help get some of these great stories out from beyond the paywall. We will also continue to run and/or participate in workshops and events, so keep the invites coming. Back Issues will still be available for sale at our store at 50% off, so please grab them while you can. And tell a friend to do the same!
There are way too many people to thank individually. I would like to single out Marquise Stillwell and everyone at Openbox, Dawn Danby and the team at Autodesk, GE, ASME, SDDCO, and Nicolas Butta, who all provided substantial financial, logistical, and partnership support that moved Makeshift forward.
An extra special mention to Steve Daniels, without whom Makeshift could never have existed, and an extra special thanks to everyone who worked or volunteered with us over the years. That means you, contributors, partners, advisors, board members, and others whose insights helped shape Makeshift’s vision in ways we could never quantify.
To all our printers, distributors, retailers, subscribers, and readers: thank you so much for all the support, the love notes you slipped us, and for spreading the word however you did it.
For current subscribers, we will refund you according to how deep you are in your current subscription. Please follow the instructions on this sheet, and we will do our best to get that to you in a timely fashion. If you have any problems in getting this form filled out, or receiving your refund, please email Melanie.
Keep creating awesome stuff. And please support all the amazing independent media that’s out there—they need you!