Zine-Making Workshop Facilitators

by zinelibraryzac
  (This is part of a workshop handout for new facilitators. We do all kinds of zine workshops for all kinds of youth and community groups, on a sliding scale for fees. Contact us at zinelibrary at robertsstreet dot org if you're interested in becoming a facilitator.)   ZINE FACILITATOR WORKSHOP OUTLINE  


Newcomer's YMCA, 2007

Eyelevel Gallery, 2006

GEM (Girls Empowerment Mentorship) Program,

St.Pat's High School Grade 10 Art, 2005


1. Definitions and Background
2. Zine Workshop Anchor Archive Style
3. A Radical History of Zines and Self-Publishing
4. List of Resources

1. Definitions and Background

Zines are self-published magazines made outside of mainstream press and media, by all kinds of people about all kinds of things.   The best way to understand what zines are is to look at a bunch of them, and you can do that at the Anchor Archive!

Zine workshops can take any form, but are a basic introduction to zines and zine making skills and ideas. They are an ideal introduction to creative process because they are simple and inexpensive, don’t require special equipment or special skills, and can incorporate a broad range of language arts and visual arts content depending on individual interests.  Zine workshops are particularly relevant to youth but can be adapted to any age group or ability level.  Typically participants each contribute a page to a collaborative zine, and everyone receives their own copy.

Radical is a word that means making economic, political, or social changes of a sweeping or extreme nature. Botanically, it means growing from a root of a plant or from the base of a stem, and even politically, it suggests going back to the root of something, looking to the source and working for overarching changes to the system, battling systemic problems like capitalism, racism, or patriarchy.

Popular Education is an educational technique designed to raise the consciousness of its participants and allow them to become more aware of how an individual's personal experiences are connected to larger societal problems. Participants are empowered to act to effect change on the problems that affect them. (definition from wikipedia)

Pedagogy is the art or science (however you see it) of teaching or being a teacher.

2. Zine Workshop Anchor Archive style

Basic supplies
- scrap paper
- scissors
- glue sticks
- pencils (sharpener)
- pens (black, felt-tip are good)
- magazines and books to cut up
- typewriter
- lettering – stamps, letraset, stencils

Suggested outline for a typical zine workshop
- go around of names
- introduce and define zines and show examples (15 min)
- how is a zine different than a magazine?
- zine history
- talk about how to make a zine and introduce today’s activity(ies) (5 min)
- show different ways people make zines – comics, drawings, stories, poems, interviews, reviews, collage, etc
- leave margins around the edges
- remember it’s being copied so use contrasty or b&w pictures
- stop talking and give everyone time to look at zines from the pile of examples
- bring out all the craft supplies, spread them out, and start making pages

Fun ideas for collaborative and independent zine activities
All together:
- Exquisit Corpse game
- collaborative add-on collage
- Hello my name is
- “How to” compilation
- Broken telephone stories
Working alone:
- one page special folding mini zine
- mini comics
- zine out of one page, any size
- accordian books
- scrolls
Finishing touches:
- pamphlet stitch

3. A Radical History of Zines and Self-publishing

Early radical self-publishing:
- Printing press invented in 1450 by Johann Gutenburg, giving people the ability to quickly and uniformly disseminate knowledge and information.
-1600s in the reformation Martin Luther used the printing press to publish inflammatory literature about the church for public distribution.
- American Revolution, broadsides and pamphlets were published to present political views, spreading ideas that led to American Independence.
- late 19th/early 20th century, newspapers and fliers were an essential part of political discussion and activism. The Abolitionist movement, Labour movement, and Suffragist movement, as well as anarchists, socialists, and communists published their ideas.
- Art movements like Dada used collage and decoupage techniques to transform and juxtapose common images and give them other meanings, sometime political ones.

Early 1900’s “fanzines”
- ‘Fanzine’ first used in the 1930s, to describe small science fiction magazines that would publish stories from anyone, usually fans of science fiction. They also printed letters commenting on and critiquing stories, with addresses so people could contact one another. This established dialogue between writers, and divisions between readers and writers were blurred.
- Comics became very popular, with both small and large publishers, and comic books also printed letters and pictures from fans.
- Beat poets in the 1930s to 50s published chapbooks, allowed them share their work without relying on publishers. Many ended up famous, and chapbooks were reprinted, like Walt Whitman’s “Leaves of Grass.”

1960s Underground Press
- many people started newspapers and magazines to present politics and lifestyles that were outside of the mainstream.
- Offset printing made the production of papers affordable to many groups, and the Underground Press Syndicate in 1967 linked alternative papers in many American cities.
- Struggles for human rights and freedom from oppression used publishing as a tool to spread information and opinions, with manifestoes, fliers, and newsletters. (Civil Rights movement, gay and lesbian movement, Feminism, Student activists, and more)

1970s Punk fanzines
- In the 1970s, many papers combined politics with music, literature, and lifestyle.
- Punk subculture was either ignored or exploited by media, and hundreds of punk fanzines began chronicling the music scene in their area, doing it themselves.
- Fanzines were made small scale and cheap, and sold through stores or by mail order.
- Many dealt with local music scenes in specific parts of the UK or USA. 

Zine Explosion…
- Xerox machines were invented in 1959, and began to be accessible in the 1980s, making it possible to reproduce anything quickly and cheaply. More and more people started self-publishing.
- Factsheet 5 started in the late 1980s to chronicle zines that existed at the time, reviewing them and giving addresses so people could get in touch with each other. This helped establish networks of people all over the world.
- Zines topics moving away from simply fiction or music, and including other topics ranging as much as people’s interests and opinions do.
- Riot grrrls in the early 1990s shared experiences and viewpoints, and zines became a forum for discussion and analysis of politics and identidy, as well as sharing personal stories and creating community. This was so important in zine culture.
- Many artists use zines and art books as a way of making multiple works, trading and sharing at a low cost. 

Zines and The Internet
- the Internet has allowed more people to present their work without getting published; thousands of e-zines exist as online publications, and although access to a computer and internet is necessary, their simplicity makes them almost more accessible than paper zines.
- There are also a huge number of resources for paper zines that exist on the Internet, and making contact with people all over the world has become easier. 
- Differences between e-zines and paper zines: paper zines are physical, tangible, immediate, art-based, book arts influenced, portable, archival, easier to share
- no ezines are not displacing zines. If anything, there are more amazing zines being made with personal touches and real TLC because they are bothering to make paper copies and not just stick the text online.

4. List of Resources
(this is just a start, there are honestly so so many)

“Zine Making.” 2003, second edition 2007, by Sarah Evans, Halifax
“I’ve Never Meta-Zine I Didn’t Like.” 2004, by Lauren Eggert-Crow
“Zines as a Pedagogical Tool.” 2005, by Julia H-V, Arlington VA
“DIY Comix.” 2004, by Shawn Grafton, Portland OR
“Stolen Sharpie Revolution.” 2003, by Alex Wrekk, Portland
“How to make a zine 101.” by Andee Grrr, Pensacola FL
“Zinester’s Etiquette Zine.” 2001, by Hayley Alaska, Los Angeles CA
“Let’s DIY: Tips and Tricks on organizing zine workshops.” 2006, by Grrrl Zines a Go-Go, San Diego CA
“The Pedagogy of Me.” 2005, by Holly Platz, Toronto ON

“Hey Kidz! Buy this Book: A radical primer on corporate and governmental propaganda and activism for short people.” 2004, Anne Elizabeth Moore & Megan Kelso, Soft Skull Press
“A Girl’s Guide to Taking Over the World: Writings from the Girl Zine Underground.” 1997, edited by Karen Green and Tristan Taormino, St. Press
“Zines! Volume 1 & 2.” 1996 & 1997, by V.Vale, RESearch.
“The Teenage Liberation Handbook: How to quit school and get a real life and education.” 1991, Grace Llewellyn, Lowry House.

All kinds of zines scanned and ready to print off as PDFs. http://www.zinelibrary.net/
Canadian zine review magazine. http://www.brokenpencil.com/
More articles and resources than you can believe. http://www.zinebook.com/
Companion website to Zine World review zine. http://www.undergroundpress.org/
An encyclopedia of zines and zinesters that you can add to and edit http://zinewiki.com/