Tauranga Zinefest

I remember as a young child on our farm in Waiuku, smelling the ink from the rollers as my parents typed up a small publication on a stencil.

They would then make copies using a Gestetner duplicator. These were regularly distributed around the neighbourhood and enjoyed by many.

Despite our world of digital media, it’s refreshing to find that for anyone who loves to doodle and write poetry, or generally express their visual creativity, there’s an opportunity to get a little ‘ziney’.

It’s like a magazine but without the ‘maga’.

“A zine is a loose term for anyone and everyone to create and publish their work,” says Tauranga Zinefest organiser Hannah Wynn.

“A zine is a small self-published magazine. It can be illustrations, poetry, and photography. Just any outlet where a creative, writer, designer can send the message that they want to get out there.”

A lot of people coming together for a day to make zines is called a zinefest.

Zinefests have been held in Auckland, Wellington and Hamilton, and this is the third year it’s being held in Tauranga. From 10am to 3pm on Saturday, May 25, Tauranga Art Gallery will be full of people making and looking at zines.

“We have at least 70 different zines to look through, with about 20-30 exhibitors set up for the day,” says Hannah.

“People can come along and buy the zines, make their own, or talk to the exhibitors. There will also be art prints and badges that can be purchased as well as the zines.”

A large table will be set up for people to start making their own zine, with all the materials provided. And a workshop delivered by Craig McClure that will help with ideas and learning how to make them.

With high profile exhibitors coming like Craig, Ross Murray, Dylan Horrocks and others at the Zinefest, and the current Anti-Heroes exhibition, the link between zines and comics is an enjoyable one.

“Often people do a zine series with one each year,” says Hannah. “We have everything from a young child doing some illustration and photocopying them to high-end publications being sold.”

Hannah has been buying zines, and now owns about 200.

“It’s a simple entry way for artists to conveying a message to the masses without spending oodles of money.”

“You can get tiny zines wrapped up in matchboxes or A3 size. Some stack the sheets and put them in an envelope, some fold them and put a staple through it. There’s no rhyme or reason with how you want to create a zine.”

Photo by Richard Voss.