Some of ou may know about it already, some of you don't: Inkscape
is a free, open-source vector gfx tool. Still in beta fase. Obviuesly it's not as great as illustrator or flash by adobe, but it's verry decent - acctualy the best one of the freebies i think. It is quite simple to make anything in it. Has got many great and useful features like 'trace bitmap' ( which btw works really, really well ) and '2d to 3d', and it's well documented with loads of tutorials. I recommend it.
Ps. Because it's open-source, maybe cons devs could include some of t's features in 2.0+ version
. just an idea.
Ps2. Cons should exchange banners with inkscape site i think.