Making a zine is an amazing way to express yourself. What’s more amazing about the process, is that it is something that you are making yourself— with your own hands. There is no wrong way of making a zine. In fact, there are many different ways in which you can create one. In this one I will show you how to make a mini zine. The steps are really basic and super easy to follow. This is going to be fun! Note *I’m really new to the zine world. With that being said, there is still a lot for me to learn. Fortunately, there are many useful videos that show you how to make zines. I will link you to some of them at the bottom of this blog post (or back cover of the mini zine). * Let’s begin zinening!
What I believe is the first step in making a zine is figuring out what the heck the zine is going to be about. It can be about your dog, your mom, flowers— whatever you want! Once you have figure this out, you can begin writing, drawing, collaging, etc. For example, for this mini-zine, I began by typing out my thoughts, and choosing the pictures.
Putting the pages in order
A zine can be created in many ways. You can write it out by hand, type it up, or scan it. For this specific zine I decided to type it out. Now, the next step is arranging it on the page, so that when you print it out it’s in order.
Since I am super new to making zines, I decided to use a template that I found online. The template was made for Microsoft Word. I myself find it hard to make things look the way I want them to on Microsoft Word.
Therefore, I decided to use Photoshop. I saved the document as a PDF and opened it on Photoshop. Here I had more freedom in making and arranging the pictures and words, the way I wanted them to look, in each box. I copy-paste the words and pictures into Photoshop, and shrunk them to fit into the boxes.
This, however, is an unnecessary step. You can easily just type it out in Microsoft Word; Or you can write it out, scan them, paste them into Microsoft Word, and shrink the scans so that they fit inside the boxes. Like I mentioned earlier, there is no wrong way of making a zine. But if you don’t know how to use Photoshop I wouldn’t recommend doing it this way. I ran into some problems during the printing part. Because the template was made specifically for Microsoft Word, the document didn’t transfer over to Photoshop well with the precise size. I had problems with my margins. I had to go back to the document to shrink the content in each box, so that when printed and folded, the words wouldn’t go over the margins, or wind up getting cut off.
Making the Mini Zine (booklet)
You will need one sheet of 8.5 x 11″ paper, scissors, and anything else you will need to create the content of your zine.
1) Fold your sheet of paper in half.
2) Unfold the paper. Now with your paper split into halves, fold one side of your paper into the middle to meet the crease.
3) Repeat step 3 for the other half of the paper.
4) unfold your paper and you will see that you have four equal sized columns.
5) Fold your paper (vertically) in half.
6) Unfold your paper and you will see that you have 8 equally sized rectangles.
7) This is a very important step: Fold your paper in half and cut halfway in at your crease. This creates an opening in the middle of your paper.
8) Now you have a sheet with 8 sections and a slit in the middle. Open up your paper, fold it in half, then simply push the ends of the paper in and fold like a small book.
9) This is how it should look when you’re done!
You might not get it right away. Your fold might look messy, but don’t let that discourage you. Everything takes practice. To make the contents of the mini zine can be done however you want. You can make it on the computer then print it out and create the booklet. Or you can write/draw the content by hand. THERE IS NO WRONG WAY OF MAKING A ZINE!! I’ll never get tired of saying that.
My Failed Attempts
My 1st failed attempt: When I first printed out my content it looked fine. Everything was in its corresponding box. However, I forgot to do something super important; I forgot to flip the content on the top row upside-down.
If you don’t flip the content upside-down, then when you create the booklet some of the pages will look like this:
Once you flip the top row, your page should look like this:
My 2nd failed attempt: This occurred when I printed the page out and did the fold, I noticed some of the words were over the fold, and it looked messy.
This is why I mentioned earlier that using this specific template on Photoshop isn’t a good idea. So if you do decide to use this template on Photoshop, make sure that the content is really centered in each box; shrink the content if you have to.
After my many failed attempts, I finally got it right!
Links to Check Out
Written by Solansh Moya
Pictures provided by Solansh Moya