Zines can feature poetry, jokes, cartoons, collage, and artwork, essentially anything that can be put down on paper. Here are resources to help you learn more about zines and zinemaking, and ways you can get started on making your own.
Do you draw? Doodle? Write notes to friends? Glue stuff? Cut paper? You can make a zine!
Zines (pronounced zeens, not like lines) are self-published booklets, often circulated in small numbers. Traditionally, zines are cut-and-paste or hand-drawn then copied on a photocopier. Today, you can also find zines that are produced digitally and feature photos, typed text, and digitally produced artwork. Zine makers distribute their zines through music stores, online stores, art galleries, and at festivals and conventions.
What do you put in a zine?
Anything goes! Zines touch on music, politics, television, movies, work, food, whatever. You can get to know people pretty well through their zines because they are highly personal and whatever the creator wants it to be! Zines can feature poetry, jokes, cartoons, collage, and artwork, essentially anything that can be put down on paper. There are many kinds of zines out there! Like, fanzines - the name given to zines that are by fans about their fandom.
What are zines for?
In her book From A to Zine, Julie Bartel writes that zines are all completely individual. The only thing that zines have in common is that the existence is the result of passion rather than a desire for profit, she writes. And she adds that it is the offline nature of zines that makes them interesting:
Zines spring from the desire to create a tangible material object, and the physicality of zines is what differentiates them in essential ways from their electronic counterparts. Zines are about paper and glue, staples, thread, and ink, not about HTML tags, links and pop ups. Creating an artefact which can be passed from one person to the next, which can be sent through the mail (the regular mail), is part of the appeal.
Making a Zine
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📚✏️ Here's another fun craft challenge - try your hand at making a Quaranzine! Zines are easy to make and a great way to reflect on lockdown life, show off your art or writing, or to share info and recipes. There's endless possibilities! Learn all about making zines on the Rangatahi - Teens page on our website. Share your creations by tagging us and using the hashtags #libraryfromhome #cclfromhome, opens a new window
How To: Zines
Ariel explains what a zine is and the power of making a zine to get your voice heard.
How to make a zine from one piece of printer paper
Dillon shows you how to make an eight-page folded zine. This is the quickest and easiest way to get started making zines.
How to Make a Zine | Lollalane
YouTuber Lollalane demonstrates how to make a zine booklet with hand-stitched binding and films her creative process.
How to make a zine
Jordan Clark shows you how to make a folded zine and films her creative process. Her video inspired others in the journal/DIY/penpal community to create their own zines from their craft stashes.
How to make a zine (kpop edition)
Using the folded zine method, DIY vlogger mayzonast uses Jordan Clark’s method to make a zine about her favourite Kpop bands.
The Pitt News is partnering with student ambassadors from the Center for Creativity to bring you some simple crafts you can do at home. Caroline Kulczycky, the creator of the Feminist Math Zine, shares tips for putting together a simple zine.
Caroline Kulczycky, a student ambassador for the Center of Creativity and the creator of the Feminist Math Zine, shares her process for creating a zine. https://t.co/twY2VslBUd
— The Pitt News (@ThePittNews) March 27, 2020
There are zine-making communities throughout New Zealand. They often hold workshops and festivals where zine makers can come together to sell and trade their zines. You can follow and join them on Facebook and Instagram.
Zines in the news
- Behind the Wheel of A Large Automobile and other amazine zines Vicki Anderson, The Press, 27 September 2019
- Auckland Zinefest is amazine The Spinoff, 23 July 2019
- Creativity flows in the capital as Wellington’s Zinefest approaches Dominion Post, 30 October 2018
- Radical, Raw and Real: Asian Diaspora Activism through Zine-making Hainamana, 14 November 2018
- What a zine is and why you could (and should!) make one The Big Idea, 23 February 2018
- An invitation to participate: Zine-making in New Zealand Bryce Galloway, B.180 Christchurch Art Gallery
Zinefest Christchurch 2019
Zinefest Christchurch, the annual celebration of DIY magazine making, was on Sunday 29 September, in Tautoru / TSB Space at Tūranga. September was Zines Month - To celebrate Zinefest, Christchurch City Libraries in conjunction with Funtime Comics and Ōtautahi Zine Library offered a series of workshops and drop-ins for visitors to have a taste of zinemaking.
See our zine pics and photos from Zinefest:
- Start Making! An interview about zines with Alice Bush of Christchurch Zinefest
- Find out about Christchurch Zinefest
- Zinefest Christchurch Facebook
- It’s Pronounced ‘Zeen’ – Christchurch Zinefest 2018 (Part One)
- It’s Pronounced ‘Zeen’ – Christchurch Zinefest 2018 (Part Two)
In short, there are few rules for zines. Some would argue that there are none. Make one yourself or get your friends in on it!
- Can I make a zine about my cat? YES!
- Can I make a zine about that old guy who whistles in front of my house every night? YES!
- Can I make a zine about my obsession with underwater basket weaving? YES!
- Can I make a zine without words? YES!
- Can I make a zine about anything and with any materials I like? YES! Pretty much.
You get the idea. Now, go! Make zines!