Use of Xerography in zines

1937 – process called Xerography invented by Chester Carson. 1950 – Xerox Corporation maes photocopy machine commerically available.

Photocopying was very heavily used in the early period of zines and are still used now but as there are different technology, most effects can be achieved on the computer before printing. Below are pages from a book “Whatcha mean what’s a zine?” and shows the different effect you could achieve using the photocopier e.g. draging the image whilst photocopying, enlarging sections of the image etc.


I found some examples in the some zines in the library which are actual issues of the zine and not photocopies. This shows the designer has used different effects of printing in that in the first photo below, that have printed the monotone green image and then another stage having blue printed text ink on top. This method has been achieved on the second and third image below where a monotone colour image is printed first and then text is printed on top at a later stage. This would have saved money considering zines were of a small distribution and scale – by printing in less inks would save money.



“Errata (16mm, 2005) is an experimental film in which I used a photocopier to generate frames of animation. Each frame of the film is a photocopy of the previous frame. Both black & white and color photocopies were used to make this film, approximately 4,600 copies total.”

This video was interesting in that it was an animation of the faults of photocopying and was a flickbook effect which expressed the ink as a fluid motion.

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