The second part of your group project asks you to re-imagine an idea or concept from the primary sources we examined and compile your work into a zine. This page provides information and resources for learning more about zines, and some tips and templates for zine making.
Zines are small-format, low-budget, DIY, self-published booklets that anyone can make about anything for any reason. Stephen Duncombe, author of the zine text Notes from the Underground, describes zines as: “noncommercial, nonprofessional, small circulation magazines which their creators produce, publish, and distribute by themselves” (10-11). Generally informative, many zines celebrate niche interests, foreground personal narratives, and/or argue for a particular political or social position.
Zines are an excellent medium for sharing knowledge and personal stories, journaling, advocating for or teaching someone about an issue or topic that you are passionate about, or building community within your circles.
The Collins Library Zine Collection contains approximately 500 zines on a variety of topics, which are housed in the Archives & Special Collections on the 2nd Floor of Collins Library. The zines in our collection vary widely in style and content and cover a wide breadth of topics, including zines on national and local issues, politics, personal narratives, intersectional identities, activism and social justice, mini comics, and much more!
Learn more about zines and our zine collection on our collection guide.
Explore these digital collections to see more examples of what zines are like:
There are many different options for creating your zine(s)! We’ll explore both physical and digital options.
Gather your supplies (for physical projects):
Include some organizational elements: front/back cover, title, table of contents, list of contributors, page numbers*, statement of purpose, etc. Discuss with your group what to include and who will be responsible for each piece.
*Page numbers will help you assemble your zine in the correct order once it is printed.
Play around with the form. Try to communicate your ideas in different ways--a free-write, black-out poetry, images only, a game, a list, a comic, or a tutorial. The options are endless!
Leave a 1/4" margin around your pages so nothing gets cut off when your zine is copied and/or printed.
Light text and images don’t always reproduce well, so bold or high contrast is best!
Relax! There are no mistakes--zines can be unpolished and messy. The point is to get creative and have fun.
For this project, you have several different options for creating your zine. You may use any tool you’d like and are comfortable with including (but not limited to) InDesign, Word, Pages, Canva, or physical paper. If you are creating a physical project, you may need to scan or photograph your pages to submit them to a group zine.
This is an 8-page mini zine made from a single sheet of 8.5’”x11” or 11”x17” paper. This is a great beginner project for first-time zine makers and individual projects.
Video Tutorial: https://youtu.be/XZ9Jw4HnJpw
If you are making a folio or digest-size zine, each of your pages should be half the size of a single sheet of 8.5x11'' paper.
The hardest part about creating a zine is collating and assembling your pages. Use the templates to create a mock-up or printer spread first! The total page count should be divisible by 4 so you don’t end up with any blank pages in the middle.
After you are done arranging your content, you can scan and print multiple copies of your zine. Fold the pages into a booklet, then staple or stitch in the center to bind.