For my final project, I chose to focus on gardening specifically urban gardening and even more specifically urban gardening for a small indoor space (like a dorm). I believe in order to begin to make a change in the environment people need to simply care. I think a good way to encourage caring for the environment is gardening on a small scale. Seeing your plants grow gives you a real since of pride. You care for a thing and it is able to thrive.
I decided to have my subject take the form of a zine, a small self published booklet. I decided this was a good form for my final project because I’m not really social media savvy or have much of a social media presence. I thought I could do more with a physical form.
I began the process of making my zine by just brainstorming gardening topics I’d want to research and read about myself.
Before diving into research I started work on a template for my zine on PowerPoint in order to know how many topics to include.
I titled my zine “Greenworld Greenthumb”. My first zine covers the topics of “Plants to Purify the Air“, “How to Propagate Succulents“, and “Tips to Care for Your Succulents“. My second zine covers the topics of “Where to Find Plants in NYC” (I used my own research for this, visiting places all over Manhattan), “Making Your Plants Decorative” (I used my own experience and pots for this), and “Tips for Transporting Plants“. Besides the information present in my zines, a big focus for me were the images. I tried to include as many photos as I could fit and tried to use as many of my own images as possible. The first zine was mostly found images, which I credited in the zine or were creative commons, but I also included my own illustrations, plants, and polaroids. My second zine, because it was mostly my own exploration and experiences, had a majority of my own images.
I printed them in a little less than a half page size in order to be small and convenient. I printed them in black and white because it’s what I had available to me. One thing I included in my second zine that was not on my first is a QR code leading to my progress post. Once printed I distributed them in two ways. I put the first edition of my zine out at my dorm’s resource center (Rubin Hall) where residents could pick them up as they entered. They second way I distributed my zines (the second edition and a few left over first editions) was handing them out in Washington Square Park.
I’ve learned a lot about plants in really diving into this project, and I came out with a couple new plants. I thought the zine making process was enjoyable and I could see continuing the process. I’ll definitely continue to garden in my window and care for my plants.