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ZFH Interviews #3: Alex Gleason

6 Sep alex-gleason-sombrero

For your Friday evening enjoyment, an interview with Alex Gleason, author of “Toddler Timothy’s Delicious Candy Apples,” a deceptively sweet title.

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ZFH: What will be on your table at this year’s Zine Fest?
AG: Toddler Timothy’s Delicious Candy Apples: a Halloween storybook about a trick-or-treater who meets a terrible fate.

ZFH: Why did you create Toddler Timothy’s Delicious Candy Apples?

AG: To instill fear in the hearts and minds of children.
2 - Photo of Book

ZFH: What is the concept behind Toddler Timothy’s Delicious Candy Apples?

AG: It’s about tainted Halloween candy. After some research, I learned that no kid has ever gotten poisoned candy from a stranger’s house on Halloween. Yet, my mother used to inspect every piece of candy in my basket before letting me eat it. I’m poking fun at people’s irrational fears.

ZFH: How did you become interested in zines?

AG: I wanted to make a book to pass out to trick-or-treaters. Later I was told that my creation was a “zine”, and discovered that there are other people in Houston making their own books too.

ZFH: What other creative ventures do you have besides making zines?

AG: I make websites and write code.

ZFH: What is something that you’re looking forward to about the 2014 Zine Fest Houston?

AG: Seeing some cool artwork and meeting other people who make books.

ZFH: What is something you think people should know about DIY in Houston?

AG: H-Town is one of the few places that does this. Represent.

ZFH: Why do you like zines?

AG: They’re pure expression–no profit. Zines make the world a better place.

ZFH: Do you find an intersection between your coding work and your illustration work in terms of content or aesthetic layout? If so, what?

AG: Writing a program is kind of like building a machine, and it can break like one. If you’re smart, you’ll make it out of replaceable parts, so if one piece breaks you can deal with it. I’ve learned to write programs this way.

Adapting this to my digital illustrations gives me a lot of control. I separate my drawings into components, which can be moved, resized, and rotated freely without messing up anything behind them. For example, I’ll draw an entire backdrop, even the parts I know will be covered, so I can freely move my subjects over them. I’ll draw a detailed bald head before layering the hair on. But that’s just the start; I take it to the extreme, down to finger nails sometimes. It really helps to fine tune everything, make changes in the future, and allows me to re-use pieces of my drawings in other drawings.

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So! Look forward to a disturbing cautionary tale sure to scar your children! In the best way possible. Yay! Till next time!

ZFH 2014 INTERVIEWS #1: Austin Bedell

2 Sep turducken_party
As we hurtle inexorably toward Zine Fest Houston 2014, we are happy to again present our annual *~TABLER INTERVIEWS~* 
 
Here to start us off: Austin Bedell, illustrator and author of ongoing comic Skweegie Island!
 
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ZFH: How did you become interested in zines?
 
AB: There was this long period in which I made nothing, simply because I had no idea who might possibly publish my work. Like, why write or draw a comic book if no one’s going to print it?
 
Boom. Do it myself. Simple.
 
Now the big question is, why print a bunch of comic books that no one is going to read? Maybe I’ll bullshit an answer to that one someday…
 
ZFH: What made you decide to participate in the 2014 Zine Fest Houston?
 
AB: That printing museum is oh, so nice and air-conditioned! And all the folks are so getalongable.
 
ZFH: What new projects are you working on this year?
 
AB: Last year I mentioned some nonsense about a comic book I was sort of working on, though not 100% invested in, but I TOTALLY FINISHED IT AND IT WILL BE HERE THIS YEAR AND IT IS GREAT, so…
 
I have no shame in telling you that I’m working on something else now!
 
ZFH: What will be on your table at this year’s Zine Fest?
 
AB: That one thing I just mentioned. And older things. And maybe something I tape together between now and the Fest.
 
ZFH: How long have you been creating zines?
 
AB: Since 2009. So what’s that, like, 15 years or something?
 
ZFH: What do you think the zine/self publishing scene in Houston will be like in 20 years?
 
AB: 1000x more naked, but also with guns.
 
ZFH: Your drawings and comics of video games, Garfield, and other bastions of popular culture have a decidedly surreal slant to them. What would you say has informed that vision?
 
AB: Drugs! Drugs! Oh, a million times drugs!
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And that’s the word from Skweegie Island. Be sure to check out Austin’s stuff at ZFH this year! We’ll be releasing our tabling map soon enough…

ZINE FEST HOUSTON 2014 REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN!!!

30 Jul

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IS THIS HOW EXCITED YOU ARE RIGHT NOW!? YOU SHOULD BE, BECAUSE…

zfh 2014 registration website

That’s right! After the long wait, we are officially opening registration for the 2014 Zine Fest Houston, Under the Zine!

Go here for details on how to register and to download a form!

<3 <3 <3 <3 <3

Summertime news!

10 Jun

Announcement one: IT’S SUMMER! Everybody hide! If the rains don’t wash you away, you’ll be shriveled up by the sun! Be vigilant. The sun is watching each of us, individually, at all times…. :)

IN OTHER NEWS, we are VERY excited about the upcoming Fresh Arts Cultured Cocktail event (AND BINGO BINGO BINGO) this Thursday, June 12th from 5-7pm at Boheme! We’d love for you to join us, we’ve got a great evening planned with fabulous door prizes for those smiled upon by the bingo gods! Will it be you…!?

BINGA
In other news, we’ll be having a volunteer meet n greet on July 2nd, 7:30pm at Lowbrow (1601 Main St.) Are you interested in being a part of ZFH? Do you have ideas for events you’d like to plan or help coordinate? Let’s all get together and share each others’ company and ideas! Be a part of the best ever ZFH!

meet n greet

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ZFH 2014 Compilation Cover by Sebastian Gomez de la Torre!

30 Apr

ZFH 2014 Compilation Cover by Sebastian Gomez de la Torre!

Whetting your appetite for the compilation, here’s a peek at the official cover! It’s a candy-colored undersea world and it is sooo luscious! We are really excited about this comp!!! We’ll see you Saturday at Menil Community Arts Festival! <3

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Zine Fest Houston 2014 contributors!!

24 Apr

Zine Fest Houston 2014 contributors!!

Here they are, so lovely to seeee~ the ZFH 2014 Compilation contributors!! All of their work is fantastic and we can’t wait to debut the compilation at Houston Indie Book Fest on May 3rd!

Catching up with Makenzie Maupin~!

12 Oct

Well everyone, it’s our last zinester feature before Zine Fest Houston takes off in a blinding blaze of glory tomorrow at the Museum of Printing History. We sit down this evening with community member, crafter, and traveler Makenzie Maupin! I want that recipe zine at the end, yum!

Why do you create zines?

Making zines has always been my way of coping. Whether I’m stuck in the middle of nowhere for a terrible summer or stuck behind a desk or stuck on a long family vacation, I’ve always made zines to help me pass the time and to help me feel like I’m doing something productive, creative, and meaningful when the rest of my life is the opposite.
 

What is your favorite part of zine fest?
I love catching up with friends, meeting new people, and being inspired by all the neat zines people are putting out. I find working with other creative people helps my own creativity and keeps me motivated to keep creating.
 

What are your favorite places in Houston?
Where to begin? There’s so many great places to eat and so many things to see. I love walking to Southside for an iced latte. I recently had brunch at Radical Eats and I basically can die happy now. I love Art Asylum and I can spend hours there picking over all the stuff. I love visiting the HAUS Co-ops, mainly because all my friends live there and it feels like a second home. Speaking of favorite places in Houston, be sure to look at my restaurant review zine and favorite places in Houston zine (if I finish it in time…)!
 

What other creative ventures do you have besides making zines?
Not as many as I would like but I love knitting, crochet, and embroidery. My mom and grandma taught me how to do all kinds of needle craft and sewing and all that kind of stuff.  I love making linocuts. I am also always wanting to learn more programming skills. I’m not very good at it but it’s fascinating work. I’d love to learn woodworking or welding but my best friend says no way, because I hate detailed work and measuring things. 
 

What new projects are you working on this year?

I haven’t been making that many zines lately, but wanted to participate in Zine Fest as a way to help me be more motivated to do creative work. It’s challenging to the the 9-5 (well…8-4) thing and then come home and try to be involved in meaningful activities outside of work when all I want to do is cuddle and watch netflix! The good news is that making zines allows me to be creative and productive AND stay in bed and cuddle all at the same time! 
 
What will be at your table this year?
 
Look for a small zine of my favorite recipes. They’re all super easy. Many fancy enough for entertaining such as a gorgeous Potato, Kale, and Ricotta Torte and a Zuchinni Galette. There’s also some old standbys like “‘use it before it goes bad’ hash” (a hash made with sweet potatos that will help you use all your almost gone bad veggies) and ” ‘Whatever you can find’ Curry” which is a basic, basic, basic curry recipe using whatever you have on hand.
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