Written by: Christopher Vaughn Couse

Zine (n.): an abbreviation for ‘magazine’ or ‘fanzine;’ most commonly a small circulation of self-published work, traditionally photocopied, which can cover many subjects, often including politics, social theory, literature, art and design.

Omaha Zine Fest (n.): A first-of-its-kind cultural event in Omaha, bringing together more than 80 local and regional zine makers and distributors to showcase their work. Saturday, March 12, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., 1316 Jones Street in the Old Market. Free, family-friendly and open to the public.

I know quite a few people in Omaha who are into creating and collecting zines, but Omaha Zine Fest is the first chance for everyone to collect under one roof, show their work, and have a collection of conversations about zines and the culture in Omaha.

I am a firm believer that art should be enjoyed by all.

In the past, I’ve made small-run zines that have included poetry and other creative writing, photography, drawings and a mix of all four. (A small collection of those works can be viewed here on my website.)

Being a self-taught artist has helped build my DIY ethics and taught me that you don’t always need a gallery to show your work or a publisher to help produce a collection of comics, poems, recipes, etc.

You just need to be self-motivated and put your
best efforts and work out there.

I’ll be tabling at Omaha Zine Fest with a few of my own zines, prints, buttons and stickers. I am a firm believer that art should be enjoyed by all. I love that Omaha Zine Fest – and producing zines in general – make my art more accessible for anyone who wants to collect it.

A few months back, my fellow tabling zinester friend, Keith, interviewed the women behind Omaha Zine Fest for his blog CRUCIAL CHANGES. (You can read that post here.) They’ve put a lot of work into organizing a phenomenal day, which will include workshops and speakers from the Midwest publishing industry. For a full list and times, check out OZF’s Facebook event page here.

Omaha Zine Fest and The Union for Contemporary Arts have also teamed up to provide two great workshops this week: Zine Binding Techniques on Wednesday, March 9, and Printing Your Own Zines on Thursday, March 10. Both start at 6 p.m. and are free for Co-OP members, $10 (per event) for non-members.

Omaha Zine Fest – a brand new event in the Old Market. What’s not to love about that? Looking forward to connecting with a big crowd – and some of the talented artists and ‘zine-sters’ I know and/or follow on Instagram – on Saturday!