Sophia Zarders & Carly Lake

Our zines and comics are heavily focused on current social justice issues, exploration of identity, empowerment, and also personal expression however that may manifest.

City:Covina
  • Poetry/Literary
  • Political/Social
  • Cultural
  • LGBTQ/Gender
  • Feminist/Riot Grrrl
  • Illustration
  • Comics

Logo/Graphic
  • Please upload up 2-5 additional images.
  • Please upload up 2-5 additional images.
  • Please upload up 2-5 additional images.
  • Please upload up 2-5 additional images.

What are your current zines about?

Social/cultural identity, empowerment, resistance, and environmental issues

What methods do you use to make your zine?

  • Handwritten/drawn
  • Photocopying
  • Digital

What type of binding do you use for your zine(s)?

  • Folded
  • Stapled
  • Saddlestitched

When did you start making zines ... and why?

Sophia: I started making zines after tabling with some artsy fartsy friends at Long Beach Zine Fest in 2015. I had some last minute zines that I didn’t even staple together which barely sold. However, I was thrilled that one cool looking person bothered to give me compensation for some emotional pieces of paper. From then, I’ve made a few comic zines about my personal life (mostly funny), one look book zine with style illustrations, and several issues of my main zine, Flossie/Dickie. Since then, I’ve mastered Adobe InDesign, bought an extra long stapler, and performed works from F/D at local DIY shows.

Carly: I started making zines only at the beginning of this year. I’ve made several picture books before, but felt drawn to the realm of zines as a more experimental medium. I feel a freedom to explore any content I am interested in. I also appreciate that this medium offers an audience that is open to discussions of taboo subjects and socially/politically charged art. Exploring sequential imagery via comics is also something I'm working on.

How do you create your zine content?

Sophia: I always start by thinking about what I want to see as a zine reader. I usually lean toward comics or more visually-minded zines, therefore I create issues that are equal parts visual media and writing. I usually create a theme for an issue of Flossie/Dickie and then ask a peer to include a relevant piece to the topic. Interactive art is always the foremost idea on my mind, so as soon as I develop that I’ll write up some short poems or some illustrations.

Carly: So far with the few zines I have made, it begins with an initial subject and desire to share information with others. Then lots of research ensues which is a part of the process I thoroughly enjoy. This research includes gathering photo reference for drawings. It also includes decifering what is most important to reveal through words and imagery and then how best to reveal it.

What is your favorite part of making zines?

Sophia: My favorite part about making zines is performing sections from them at DIY shows and zine readings. I started doing these performances after talking to a friend who runs DIY music label in Orange County. I couldn’t start a band and wanted to stretch my vocal chords with poetry and performance art. Last year, he started booking me in between bands at some shows at skate shops and record stores. I immediately fell in love with reading at shows and I’ve started doing more controversial pieces in these ~admittedly~ mostly white/cis/male spaces. I love exploring my identity as a queer, Black femme on a small stage and uncomfortably close to sweaty punks. Other than performing, I love chatting with people at zine fests. I feel very at home and welcomed at zine fests and it’s always a relief to see so many artists, creatives, and zinesters that look like me.

What is your biggest challenge in making zines?

Sophia: The biggest challenge in my case is to create a zine that’s interactive with the reader. I’ve recently started experimenting with performance art and Fluxus-inspired pieces in my zine, Flossie/Dickie. Interactive art will always be the most effective and successful form of art in my eyes, but it is definitely difficult to transfer that into a printed zine.

Carly: My challenge is to create zines that provide solutions. As someone who is interested in making zines about social and environmental issues, it is easy to point out the many problems with the system. And a solution does not have to just be a straightforward answer either. I think solutions can be offered in many forms using this medium which is what’s so great, and challenging about it. The challenge is to find a way to make an inspiring connection with other people with some pieces of paper and ink.

What else do you want people know about you or your zines?

Sophia: I like the idea of a reader approaching my zines with an open mind. I want them to know that they can submit art or writing or any creative outlet to my zine, Flossie/Dickie. I want the reader to know that I am open to knew ideas and tough conversations about the zine scene/art world.