As some of you know, I’ve struggled for some time to find cohesion in all the things that I do / make. It was reassuring to have a stall at the Auckland Zinefest with my books, zines, DIY Kits, AND Blue Mushroom Books, and feel like they all fitted together somehow. Yay!
I also got some wonderful feedback. One customer had bought my #blog zine last year and had been inspired to start her own blog. My Where Do Ideas Come From? zine sold out, including one purchase from a primary school teacher who is going to share it with her class. And I met a couple who fell in love with Ramble On, got excited about zine-making, then had a wonderful conversation with me about creativity, self-expression, and mental health.
I didn’t buy much myself this time – two mini zines from Jamie Sands, and a zombie mushroom pin from IZS Comics.
So, onwards and upwards. There’ll be more news soon about what I’m planning as I continue to carve my own path, so do keep an eye on my blog.
Setting up at Hamilton Zinefest
The first zinefest I ever attended was the 2016 Hamilton Zinefest, so it was great to be back at this year’s event. I managed to sleep in, then got ready in a rush, and somehow arrived half an hour early. Yeah, don’t ask. It was definitely a coffee day.
I’m all set up!
What I love most about zinefests, and zines in general, is the creative freedom you get. There’s so little monetary investment that there’s less pressure to make something commercially viable, or mainstream, or even necessarily ‘good’. The room was filled with truly diverse expressions of creativity, and a huge range of people.
What really struck me this year was how incredibly nice everyone was. There was no judgement or comparison. The local school zines were as valued as a professional illustrator’s posters which were as valued as the lady next to me who’d just started drawing (Mini V – you can follow her on Instagram). This is what a real celebration of creativity looks like. More of this please, Universe!
The room begins to fill…
I also loved that, compared to other markets, there was very little emphasis on sales. What we were all there for was to share our work, to invite others to share with us, and to make connections through our zines and conversation. Kudos to the zinefest committee who made this such a successful, seamless day – I am already looking forward to the next one!
ALL the links:
Books + art at Youthline gallery
Four of the artists from ‘I am an Artist’: Zee, Anna, Jane & Megan (photo: L. Simpson)
Zee & Jane (photo: M. Murphy)
photo: B. Southcombe
Zee’s speech (photo: P. Southcombe)
The exhibition and book launch was a wonderful event! There were so many positive people in one place, it was hard not to feel happy, loved, and important.
Here are a few photos from the night for those of you who couldn’t make it.
Artworks can be viewed here and the book can be bought on the website shop or Felt.