The Art of the 'Zine
South of the Moon Rune
The word "Fanzine" is used to describe a magazine which is published specifically for enthusiasts (or "fans") of a specific field of interest. The publications may be professionally written and distributed ... but the vast majority of them have been produced by avid amateurs who usually possess a very high degree of knowledge in their various subjects ... but little money to disseminate the information. There have been literally tens of thousands of these things published. In the areas of paperbacks, pulps and science fiction, I've listed 2,500 of them HERE, though that's actually a small fraction of the total number of zines out there on those subjects.
In truth, fanzines are what we would today call "blogs" on the internet; much like ... well ... the website you're viewing right now.
Recently, I've been fortunate enough to acquire part of Bob Gaines' zine collection. (Bob has been a HUGE help in bringing you the BookScans website, especially in the area of "Twin Covers.") Bob has asked me more than once if I could help bring viewers some examples of INTERIOR ARTWORK from these amateur offerings. And so, I've scanned a few pictures from a random handful of the zines now at my disposal.
Most of these were published in the 1960's and 70's. My use of the pictures on this page is completely unauthorized. (If anyone out there has any objections, please contact me.) Some of the artwork in these publications is particularly well done. Many of the illustrations and cartoons obviously took a long time to accomplish. Good or bad, I think this is generally a representative cross-section of interior zine art.
CLICK AN IMAGE TO SEE THE FULL VIEW
The Essence #4 was published in 1971 by Jay Zaremba of Canoga Park, CA. It dealt with amateur Sci Fi art.
Twiltone #2 was published in 1979 by Taral Wayne, Willowdale, Ontario. Commentary on science and science fiction.
Tightbeam #21, 1979, Lynne Holdom, Pompton Lakes, NJ. Sci Fi - Fantasy.
Starling #15, 1970, Hank & Lesleigh Luttrell, Columbia, MO. Sci Fi review.
South of the Moon #13, 1976, Andrew Sigel, Evanston, IL (originally published by Larry Nielson). This is a fanzine about fanzines, "indexing all known fannish amateur press associations."
Rune #28, 1973, Ken Fletcher & Caryl Bucklin. The newsletter of the Minnesota Science Fiction Society, Inc.
Quetzalcoatl (FirstClass #5), 1979, David M. Vereschagin, Edmonton, Alberta. Personal experiences at fan gatherings and with members of various APA (Amateur Press Association) chapters.
Oxytocic #10, 1974, Michael T. Shoemaker, Alexandria, VA. Two-tone mimeograph (can you see the guy hanging from the balloon?). Sci Fi reviews and comments. (For you more modern viewers, a mimeograph was a copy machine that used a typed mat sheet attached to a steel drum that spun around and around, printing legal or letter-sized sheets, one at time. It had a distinctive look, usually printing in either dark blue or purple. It also had a very distinctive odor.)
Maneki-Neko #2, 1967, John & Bjo Trimble, Tarzana, CA. Japanese Science Fiction.
The Lowdown #2, 1969, Richard Labonte, Ottawa, Ontario. In association with "St. Louiscon," St. Louis, MO. Lists all the nominees for the year's ten Hugo Award categories. VERY detailed.
Kratophany #9, 1976, Eli Cohen, Regina, Saskatchewan. I'm not really sure what this is about. It seems to address topics including amateur publishing, Taoism and immigration issues in Canada and the U.S.
Gegenschein Review #26, 1976, E. Bruce Lindsay, Faulconbridge, NSW, Australia. Sci Fi reviews in Journalism, Art, Medicine, Music and lots more. Harlan Ellison and Forrest Ackerman are listed as contributors.