skip to main content

Zinesters in LCF Special Collections #16

Written by Justyna Burzynska
Published date 01 February 2018

Name and location: LP, Amsterdam

How long have you been making zines for?
I made my first “official” zine in 2010, so about 7 years ago. Looking back though, I have been making zine-like booklets from kindergarten on.

What do you like to create zines about?
Whatever comes to mind, really. I have written/collaborated on zines on topics as diverse as my severe dislike of (unproductive) meetings, my favourite things, and perzines about my extended stay(s) in California. A zine about my daily wig wearing is in the works. The fact that zines can be about anything and everything, is what I love most about them: if you can think of it, there’s probably a zine about it. And if not, you can just go ahead and write one.

What is your favourite zine/comic/book?
From the top of my head: some of my favourite zines are “In-between” by Aijung Kim, the entire “Doris” zine series by Cindy Crabb, “Don’t Call Me Cupcake 2: Fear” by Nyx, “& Octopus” by Foggybottom Press, “No Gods, No Mattress 14 – the travel issue” by Enola and “Meta – a zine about Margaret Kilgallen” by Marissa Falco, which are all very diverse in both content and look.

Due to being raised in a strict “comics are not real books” household, I have only come to read/appreciate comics later in life. I highly enjoyed “The Rabbi’s Cat” by Joann Sfar, “Persepolis” by Marjane Satrapi and “Fun House” by Alison Bechdel.

There are so many books dear to my heart, but to keep life simple I have decided that my all-time favourite book is “Minoes” by Annie M.G. Schmidt. This book has been translated into English as “Minnie” and has also been made into a movie starring Carice van Houten of “Game of Thrones” fame. While technically a children’s book, Annie M.G. quite masterfully layered many subversive elements into the story, making for a completely different read for a child than for an adult. It was also the first “real” book that I read on my own, so there might be a bit of nostalgia at play too.

Tell us a bit more about your creative process: It never stops: there is always something happening, at least in my head. I journal daily and apart from that also keep notes, clippings and other materials organised in files to access at a later date. Once I have enough material, I sit down to work on one project and try to finish it as soon as I can, as I have bad experiences with working on various projects at the same time: all the projects got delayed. So now I only work on zines and other projects consecutively.

I usually have a general idea of what a particular zine is going to look like (text dense, more pictures, etcetera) in the planning stages. I run my ideas by my sparring partner (that would be my mum), and adapt my ideas incorporating some of the feedback I get from her. Then I start with the actual work: I either cut and paste the zine by hand, use Scribus or (don’t tell anyone) use Word – whatever gets it done, basically.

What does it feel like to have your zine in the London College of Fashion Library’s Special Collections?
It feels amazing! I am so stoked! Creating and publishing zines does have a bit of a message in a bottle type feel, and it’s always nice to see that my work is being picked up, read and appreciated.

What influenced LP Style?
LP Style started out as a 24 Hour Zine Thing zine. This is a yearly event during International Zine Month where you try to create a zine in 24 hours. I had just read Lauren Conrad’s Style book, and found it extremely bland, so I figured I’d write a parody. But during the brainstorm phase, I realised that I actually had quite a bit to say about my style and the evolution of it. So I chose a different topic for my 24 Hour Zine Thing zine, and expanded the story of LP Style into a “full” zine.

What one piece of advice would you give UAL students about zine making?
It’s a cliché, but: just do it! I’ve heard so many people over the years go: “Oh, I’d love to write a zine!” and leave it at that. Which is a pity, as zine making is probably the easiest and most accessible book art form: despite “zine purists” claiming otherwise, there are no rules on how zines should look or what they should be about.

While perzines often get the most attention, there’s an endless amount of topics you can write a zine about: from hamsters to banana recipes and from instructional manuals to your latest grocery store visit. A zine doesn’t even have to contain words if you don’t want it to. The easiest way to start is by making a 1 page zine (instructions on how to fold are easy to find on the internet) and you’ll have a zine ready within no time. Making a 1 pager is also a fun group activity, afterwards you can print copies and exchange them with each other, so you can both kickstart your zine making AND zine collecting careers.

Check LP out here!