As part of Virginia Archives Month 2023, we encourage everyone to try making their own zine.
Explore the resources and tips below to help you get started!
A zine can be about anything! It can be serious or silly. It can answer a question. It can be a how-to guide. It can be about something you’ve done, or something you hope to do. A zine can also be about nothing at all. This freedom makes zines an ideal form of self-expression, but this can also make it hard to determine where to begin. Take some time to brainstorm before starting your zine.
Use one of these tear-off-topic sheets to get the creative juices flowing. The first sheet of Zine Prompts is related to art, collecting, and memory. The second sheet of Zine Prompts is related to personal experiences or ideas.
Once you have selected a topic for your zine, it's time to gather your supplies! See below for a list of essential and optional zine supplies.
Use the templates below to help you layout and fold your zine.
The tools below can help you create digital zines. Digital zines can be downloaded and printed, or they can be read online.
The DIY spirit of zines and zine culture is built on sharing. This includes the sharing of images and other print materials; however, it’s important to make sure you have permission to reuse material created by others. This is even more important if you hope to share and distribute your zine.
The public domain consists of images and other material that do not fall under any intellectual property or copyright restrictions. Materials can enter the public domain for various reasons, but when no exclusive right is held, then that material is open to use by anyone in the public.
Welcome to Public Domain (Stanford Libraries)
Guide to materials in the public domain.
Creative Commons images are images and material that do fall under copyright by the creator but are permitted for reuse, especially for educational or creative purposes.
Locating Images for Presentations and Coursework (Purdue University)
Guide to locating free-to-reuse images, including Creative Commons images.
The doctrine of fair use allows reuse of copyrighted materials without permission under certain circumstances.
If trying to navigate copyright seems too much of a headache, make your own images! Draw. Cross stitch. Paint. Take pictures on a phone or camera of friends, pets, places, etc. You can then use a photocopier or scanner to place these images into your zine!