The usual music stand is a flat piece of metal on a metal pole. This piece of equipment may sound intrinsic boring, but it has a number of rather nice applications to arts other than music; it is also seen in business use as well. Obviously the business use is pretty basic; if it can be used to hold up sheets of music, then it can hold up other pieces of paper, such as a speech, making it easier for the person to keep their speech organized.
Painters and other artists love them. Although they can obviously use easels to hold their canvasses, the music stand tends to be better for smaller canvasses, holding them up at an easier angle of attack for the artist. There are smaller easels, but they just don’t help the artist; they are either too low or designed for indoor use. Although there are attachments for smaller canvasses on the larger easels, they are generally flimsy, not allowing for the backing a music stand can offer. Not only can they be used outside, but the music stands can also be planted into the ground rather than merely stood on the ground, offering a much more firm platform for painting.
An easel can also hold notes that they artist has made, allowing him to take advantage of scouting the location and thus helping him to use his notes on site. A lot of artists tend to scout out locations, looking for the best times and angles for creating, as well as other issues, such as noting potential crowd control problems, holding permits necessary to the situation, and sometimes being used as a makeshift table for food and other tools of the trade. It can also easily hold most laptops, allowing easy access to them anywhere. An easel, although great for its stated use, simply lacks the adaptability of a good music stand. If you play the cymbal, you may want to have a cymbal stand of course.
It may appear that they are limited to the music room or concert hall. However, with a little imagination it can be used for a variety of purposes in order to help you make sure that you can create whatever art you want to, and to ensure that your process goes as quickly and simply as possible. Of course, you can also keep them where you will be playing your music, but that seems like so much of a waste of a cool item.