Sunny’s Zine Workshop!
Before we start this video, I would like to acknowledge that this content was filmed and created on the stolen lands of the Woiwurrung (Wurundjeri) and Boonwurrung peoples of the Kulin Nation and pay my respects to Elders past, present and emerging. Always was, and always will be, Aboriginal land.
안녕 (Hello) friends, thanks for tuning in to (in)visible’s online zine workshop! My name is Sunny and I use they/them pronouns. Today I’m going to be showing you my process of going from this… a lovely, folded, printed out zine…. To this! This zine was originally made by me and my friend Arden, and recently edited by me! Hopefully you can follow along and end up with a wonderful little zine of love by the end of this video. This video is also sped up so feel free to pause whenever you need to, take breaks, put on some nice tunes, light some candles, collect your thoughts, and set up your space. Also, there’s no pressure to fill out every part of this zine; you can skip whole sections or come back to it at a later date; there is no rush and this zine is for you to fill out in a way that works best for you.
So, let’s get into it!
Firstly, you’ll need a printed version of the zine and a pair of scissors. You should also have some colour pencils or markers on hand, and optionally some stickers, stamps, decorative tape, or anything else you’d like to use. You can download a pdf of the zine from a link in the description of this video, make sure when you print you choose the “fit to page” option. It can be printed from any basic A4 printer. Once you’ve got the zine printed out, fold it in half lengthways and widthways. There are guides on the page for you to follow to get straight, even folds. Once you’ve made those folds, have the page print side down and fold the two shorter edges into the centre crease that you’ve made.
Now fold it back in half widthways and using your scissors, cut from the middle of the folded edge towards the opposite edge, but stop at the halfway point; the guide will help you. Be careful not to cut past this point! After you’ve done all of that, you’re ready to fold. Fold the page lengthways again and holding each end, push the sides into the centre so that your page makes a little diamond shape. Now, push the paper flat against the table and fold, making sure you flip the pages into the correct order. Feel free to flip through and smooth out each page and ta-da, you’re done!
On the first page, there is a big heart with the words “zine of love” in the centre of the page. At the top is the (in)visible logo, and at the bottom are the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags, with the words “We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation, on whose unceded land this zine was created” in italics.
I’m going to begin colouring in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags.
Firstly, as a sign of respect, please colour in these flags in the correct colours. Whilst colouring in this section, I was reflecting on my position as someone who is not from this land and just how much I have benefited from it. I encourage other settlers/migrants to reflect on this and maybe translate it into action after watching this video – such as “paying the rent” if you have the financial means (which I have linked some more information about in the description of this video for those who want to know more) or otherwise uplifting First Nations voices wherever you can.
I hope you can let your creativity loose and colour to your heart’s content. The template is there as a guide so you aren’t starting from a blank piece of paper, which can be daunting for a lot of people. If you want though, feel free to ignore the guide, colour outside of the lines, do your own patterns, and more! Take your time and let go of ideas of perfection; just enjoy the process.
Now… onto the next page!
On the second page, there is a heading saying “crossword”. Below this, there is a crossword for each word of the acronym “QTIPOC”. Below this, it says “I love being QTIPOC because…” with three lines to fill in your answer, and at the very bottom of the page it says, “I am a Queer/Trans/Intersex Person of Colour”. (Hint hint, if you get stuck with the crossword, have a look at this bit!)
For the “I love being QTIPOC because…” section, you can write whatever feels right for you. I wrote “because of the incredible QTIPOC community!”. Shout out to my beautiful QTIPOC friends, many of whom I consider to be family, love you so much <3
This page has the words “You are loved” in all caps with a blocky detail stretching out each letter to the bottom right side of the page.
Whilst colouring in this section, I was reflecting on the people that I love and care about and sending them love, as well as reflecting on people that care about me. I found this to be so lovely and soothing in a way. But it’s also okay if it’s hard to believe that you are loved, you don’t feel loved, if you wish you were loved, or if you find it hard to love yourself… I see you, I relate so hard, and I’m sending you lots of love.
This page has a round mirror in the centre of the page with the words “Mirror, mirror in my hand… Who is the cutest QTIPOC in all the land?” written all the way around the mirror. At the bottom of the page there is a hand holding the mirror with the words “I AM!” written on the hand.
This page is all about you! The idea is to draw yourself in the mirror. I know that for many people, drawing people, faces, or even yourself can be daunting and uncomfortable. But I want to remind you that it doesn’t have to be perfect, it doesn’t have to be realistic, it doesn’t even have to look like you! It can be anything from your gaming character to how you see yourself in your mind’s eye. All that matters is that you identify with what you’ve drawn, because the cutest QTIPOC in all the land is, in fact, you! For example, I drew myself with pink hair; I don’t have pink hair in real life, but I’d like to one day! Don’t forget clothing and accessories, whatever you want to draw. You can also colour the little nails on the hand however you want too; I went with rainbow. You can also draw yourself wherever you would like to be. I did a simple blue background, but you can draw yourself floating in space, on a waterslide, you name it! Where do you want to be right now?
On this page, there is a drawing of a unicorn with swirls emanating from its head and body. There is a speech bubble coming from the unicorn’s mouth saying “My name is ______” at the bottom of the page. At the top-left corner of the page there is a heading that says “My support system:” with four dot points and lines for you to fill in.
This page is all about your support system! Who’s there for you during rough times, who supports you emotionally, physically, financially? For some it’s family, chosen or otherwise. For others it’s their GP, their psychologist, their housemates, their work or uni mates… the list goes on! You’re not confined to people either; you can name pets, plants, your plushie (of which I have several) and more! And no pressure to fill out all four lines, it’s more than okay to list one or two names. My main support system consists of: my lovely partner Nora; my wonderful flatmates Kate, Rosa and greyhound Olive; the flower buds, Claire, Lucy, Chris and Rory who are some of my closest friends; and my brother, who has recently been a big support for me in processing and validating family trauma. I hope that when you’re going through a rough time, you can look back through this list you’ve made and think “maybe I’ll give this person a call?” or “maybe I’ll give Gwen, my plushie, a cuddle” and remember that you have a whole system of support you can lean on and people who are here for you. Also, don’t forget to name your unicorn! After a lot of thought, I named mine Bethany :)
We’re nearing the end of the zine my friends!
This last double-page spread is all about self care. At the top of the page there is a heading that says “Self Care” with a few hearts on either side of the heading. In the middle of the page there is a tablet with a webpage open. The title on the webpage says “My fave self-care practices are…” and five lines for you to write in your answers. To the left of the heading there is a smartphone with the words “Write/draw your favourite things :)” on it. All around the tablet and phone are sticky notes and polaroid frames for you to draw your favourite things. On the bottom right of the tablet there is an iPod with a blank screen, and above this are two pens. At the top-right of the page there is a warm beverage with steam drifting all around the edges of the page. How relaxing!
There is so much to say about self-care! I think it’s important to recognise that self-care is not a solo activity for many people; some people need support workers or aides to care for them, while others desire and need social interaction to take care of their mental health. For others working long hours or who have caring responsibilities, it can be a huge struggle to separate time to dedicate to self care.
Because of capitalism, society tends to view self-care as something we might need to do to boost productivity at work, which tends to go hand in hand with consumerism, where self-care is used as justification to buy fancy things for ourselves. But self-care is about so much more than that. Especially for us QTIPOC, as explained brilliantly by Audre Lorde, taking care of ourselves is a revolutionary act of self-preservation, not self-indulgence. What activities or coping mechanisms help you feel better when you’re going through a rough time? Do you book a session with your therapist? Do you order yourself some takeout so you’ve had a proper meal? What works best for you? My list consists of dancing, having a shower, playing Minecraft, singing, chatting to friends, and listening to music. In the iPod I decided that it should be playing Juice by Lizzo, because dancing to that song brings me so much joy.
I also start drawing some of my favourite things in the post-it notes and polaroids. Olive is my housemate’s 6 year old greyhound and she is just the best girl ever, something I remind her of every day as I’m patting her. Sleep is also one of my favourite things, I’m such a nap person. Drawing, and creating in general is something I love to do and helps me express myself and share joy with others. I also drew my Minecraft character digging up a grass block! If you want to play Minecraft with me and my good friend Claire from (in)visible, jump onto (in)visible’s facebook page to find out more! On the right, I drew some cake, and in the last post-it note I made a little self-care to-do list to call my wonderful friend Christie and to cook dinner that evening. After colouring in the final few details, I’m done!
Onto the final page, the page of resources! This page has the layout of a website, with the (in)visible logo at the top. The site is from “elgooG”, with “QTIPOC Resources” in the search bar. The search results include (in)visible, OMG I’m QTIPOC, drummond street services, QTPOC Mental Health, and Switchboard Victoria.
This list is for you to peruse and look up at your own pace. If you want to learn more about being QTIPOC, if you want to attend some events for young QTIPOC, or if you want to find community, follow the relevant links and take your time! We’re here to help if you need support; please reach out.
Well that’s the end of the zine! I added “Impressive” and “Well Done” stamps on the cover, as well as a flower sticker. I hope you enjoyed the video and have made your own little zines of love! Tag (in)visible (@invisible.thedrum) in your posts; we would love to see them. Thanks for watching and take care of yourselves!