Arts, Entertainment & Media

Masters of Zines- London Arts students who stumbled into their careers

Zine. Image:

Zine. Image: Toby Roddham

Zines have been the means by which two London arts students stumbled into their careers by pure chance.

A zine is a small circulation self-published work of original or derived texts and images.

32 year old Goldsmiths University lecturer on photography, Alexander Sturrock, had his photographs purchased by three major UK newspapers, The Guardian, The Independent and the Observer.

His breakthrough came with an image captured during a ‘stop the war’ demonstration that was taking place after the ‘war on Iraq’ had been announced in 2003.

The photograph was of a woman on a billboard who had ‘Stop the war’ printed on her chest.

Alexander didn’t know that the following morning this powerful image would land him his first pay cheque.

The photograph was purchased by The Independent for sixty-pounds.

The Observer paid eighty-pounds and The Guardian one-hundred and twenty pounds.

22 year old University College London graphic design student, Jack Caldwell, launched his first zine in his hometown Chichester, West Sussex.

This was a self published piece of original work created because of his skateboarding enthusiasm

He just started taking photographs of his friends in Chichester on their skateboards.

Caldwell said:

We would go out and take photos of our mates skateboarding, like the lifestyle of skate-boarding back home.
We started making zines which we started putting into our local shops.

He published his first zine titled ‘Do nothing club’ which was distributed in local shops in and around Chichester.

He was uncertain with his future at first but after the publishing of the zine he says he finally discovered his true passion and began working towards a degree in graphic design.

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Publishing and self-publishing is increasingly becoming more and more popular with many artists now resorting to creating their own zines, books etc… instead of having to through sponsorships.

As a result this would mean Arts, Books and publishers will either shrink down or go out of business because they are now becoming surplus to requirements. However the main drawbacks to going independent is the financial side. If nothing you create gets any traction or if your printer breaks you will have to pay for it.

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