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Title: Artforum
Editor(s): M.A. Smith
Type: fanart discussion
Date(s): June 1989-March 1990
Medium: print
Fandom: multimedia
External Links:
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Artforum is a gen multifandom zine of articles, art, and letters focusing on discussion and advice about fanart. There may have just been three issues.


flyer printed in Qapla'

From a 1988 ad:

A quarterly media art zine will include LoCs, zine reviews... zine, artists, and printer listings, an artist's and editor's exchange, illo demos, art portfolios, constructive criticism on almost anything to do with fan art, design, and layout. Send a SASE for flyer and/or submission guidelines. Preview issue will be free on a limited basis... Age statement will be required. [1]

From the editor in issue #1:

So, why do an art-orientated zine? Because it wasn't there! Really. There seemed to be this enormous gap in fandom between artists and fans interested in visual communication. The operative word here is communication. It's that 'communication gap' that Artforum will attempt to fill, little by little.

Issue 1

Artforum 1 was published in June 1989 and contains 30 pages.

cover of issue #1, Kevin Hopkins

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 1

I just returned from Australia and found ARTFORUM ONE in my mail stacks. I imist admit you presented quite an impressive series of pieces on the cover and within. Congratulations on a good-looking, well-put-together first issue!


t found all the articles and letters within highly informative. I agree with Sandy Zier concerning the proper printing of artwork; I find myself using three different places locally depending on the piece: xerox, offset/lithograph (done at same place), and duotone/color screening (same place). Fortunately, my xerox store will test run all art for me so I can take it elsewhere if it doesn't come out satisfactorily.


Susan Garrett raised a handful of good questions. I'd like to comment on one: sending spot illos to several zines/resubmission. Whether the original editor of the piece needs to be informed is one question: but I feel the more pressing thought is that the editor republishing the piece should be told. One artist in the past submitted the same piece to several fanzines and didn't tell the editors. Needless to say, the zine I used their work in hadn't been out two weeks when I received a handful of letters accusing me of pirating artwork, a matter that took two months to clear up and each zine wound up adding an errata about previous publication on the pieces in question. Sometimes the artist is unaware that this should be done, but the aforementioned artist knew full well that a mess was created, and STILL Mntinued to resubmit pieces fron zines still in print (including to one East Coast editor in which pieces were resubmitted to the editor who had originally published them!) and not letting the editor know. I have NOTHING against an artist resubmitting a piece; however, it is only fair that if previously published, it should be so stated by the artist and then credited in the zine.


As for places to do adult material, I have found my printers, Kinkos, willing to run ANYTHING submitted, including the copies of OBSC'ZINE I run for Lori Carleton periodically, without any qualms. In fact, when I first approached the manager about running adult material, he stated that it is company policy that their employees are not to read the material they are printing. I have never encountered a problem with anything I print through the Michigan Ave. branch and they

guarantee their work. [2]

I was quite delighted with the first issue of ARTFORUM. Not only was the subject varied and informative, even the visual format was pleasing to the eye. My sincerest thanks to the editor for stepping in and filling the void that has long been neglected in fandom.


Many thanks for the interview with Marty Siegrist. Her work is beautiful and conveys a sensitivity and emotional impact that is rare in fan art. Drawing on Coquille paper is far from easy and I salute her for the wonderful end results her talent gives us.

Also I was fascinated with Teegar Taylor's Tricks of the Trade. I know all too well the headaches stipple drawing can give an artist. I enjoyed the way she supplied examples of her drawings to illustrate the evolution of her artwork. Stipple ink is a technique one cannot rush, and if it is, it SHOWS. It takes me 15-20 hours to complete a stipple and Ms. Taylor, it only makes me appreciate all the more your talented efforts. [3]

When ARTFORUM ONE arrived, I immediately sat down and read it cover to cover. I'm delighted to know that there are other editors out there who take as much care with the production of their fanzines as I do with mine. From what I saw at a recent convention, though, these publications still seem to be the exception rather than the norm. But then, that's why ARTFORUM was started, right? One suggestion: there were several LOCs from zineds who talked about their publications, but never once mentioned the names of the zines! (Gulp, myself included.)


What else would I like to see in ARTFORUM? More spot art. Maybe more graphics for the continuing features. Like in STATUS REPORT, the newsletter I edit for our local ST club~we have a few standing heads for our LOC column and book review section (thanks to clip art from Dover, Graphic Source, etc.). Are you interested in using this, or are you just interested in using newly created stuff by fannish artists? It's a possible solution for editors who need a little something extra but don't have a graphic designer for a boyfriend who draws on command! [4]

As an Editor, i want the illustrations to do just to illustrate some point in the story/poem, so that the reader has an idea of what is happening, even if what is happening is a nightmare deep in a lunatic's mind. As a reader, I want to know what the writer had in mind, although my vision may not be that of the artist.

The problem is that while it's relatively easy to draw a "talking head", a figure in action considerably more skill, and alas, is sometimes lacking in fanzine art. How often I've read through a hat has only "portrait" art . . very well, but where's the beef? Where's the action?

Artists have been known to counter this by that you can't sell a piece of art that was originally meant for a particular a particular story. Balderdash! If someone asks for an illustration, they want a descriptive moment in that story! Otherwise, they might as well use the same photo we've all seen a thousand times, in the same issue of STARLOG! I realize this is an unusually sticky wicket... but even "pro" artists fall into this trap. Please . . . illustrate the STORY! [5]

I just finished an evening I consider very well spent studying the copy of MTFORUH you sent so pron^tly. Had it arrived with gold leaf trim and parchment pages I couldn't have been more impressed. Now that I've seen what you're planning to do, I would like to offer a few suggestions.

Regarding sexually explicit illos--why not do what TREKLINK does? Have a separate section subscribers have to request for the explicit themes. In this way artists wishing to work In this area and those who appreciate It can both be satisfied without offending those who prefer to avoid the subject.

While the MARTY SIEGRIST Interview was both Interesting and Informative, unless this high standard can be maintained, keep the Interviews to a minimum.

Not only should you continue the LOC column and reviews, but perhaps there should also be a "CAVEAT" column where artists and others who have run Into difficulties with less-than-ethlcal publishers, etc. can warn others to beware of dealing with these persons. [6]

Wow! After reading the first ARTFORUM, I suddenly get the feeling there's a lot more zinedom out there than I ever Imagined. I think I'm going to learn a lot from this publication. Even the LOCs had some things In them I'd never considered.


With that in mind, I respond to one of the LOCs from the first Issue, where It was suggested you not print negative comments. Constructive criticism Is vital to Improvement. Every time I go through a story edit, I learn more about writing. But because a zine editor Is usually a writer and not an artist, and because It's less practical to revise artwork, there's little opportunity for the same learning experience when your art Is published. This opportunity to participate In art critique Is too valuable to ignore—and I have always found that paying close attention to the reaction of another artist gets can teach you as much as having your own work "ripped to shreds." So I hope to see some of that (well, not so much the ripping as good honest reactions) in this zine.

I think I'd like to add something to Lorraine Bartlett's comments about illustrators versus artists. Since I started doing art for fandom (getting my big break in RERUN!), I've pretty much done floating heads, trying to match expression and clothing to the story. Sut there's nothing I'd like better than to turn out some good action illustrations—if only I had a few models on call . . . or maybe some great references. To some extent I've used me and the mirror, but when you're striving for accuracy, there's only so natch fudging you can do—say if you're a iradian fonale person and you want a large male person. So I say, YES, it's the availability of references that make the difference!

My point of view may be a very narrow one. I've been in an incredibly remote area and maybe out in the real world there are more available references. I've never been to a media convention; never seen a fan art auction or tried to sell my work at one. (It becomes obvious why ARTFORUM is going to be such a help!) And up till this point I've done work for only a from zines. So what I'd like to know is where illustrators get their action references? Can they be obtained without a lot of expense? (If I'm not selling my work I sure can't put a lot of money into it!) I'd be pleased even to find some better "portrait" type refs—I'm tired of working from tiny, grainy TV GUIDE refs with indeterminate lighting![7]

Salutations and congratulations on your primer issue. I got such a charge when your zine arrived in my mail. I wanted to read-it-all-at-once! I'm a LITTLE starved for art talk!


It was 3 months AFTER the SW comic folded that I discovered zinedom and specifically SW zinedom in late 86! I was stunned and amazed that all this was going on. I jumped in head first and have been at it ever since (I still feel neoish, it really has only been 2 1/2 years).

With illoing in SW zinedom I've been able to reactivate my sleeping skills further by treating my assignments as 'pro' assignments as much as possible. And SW zinedom has given me the 'spark' to try the pro route again now with much higher observational/technical skills to better be able to translate what I 'see' inside my mind. [8]

There is so much to comment on in the first issue of ARTFORUM that I'm not sure where to begin . . . Perhaps by saying I think it's a marvelous to have such a publication available, and that you've done a wonderful job getting it started.


My favorite part of this issue was the interview with Marty Siegrist. Again, it was facinating to read about a particular process and method. The inclusion of the sample of coquille paper was a nice (and unexpected) touch. But . . . what I liked most was the beautiful drawing Marty provided to accompany the interview. I've enjoyed her work for years (and even published it once!), and recently had the pleasure of writing a poem to go with another striking Riker and Data illo she did.

There wasn't really anything I was dissatisfied with in this issue. I would like to see more reviews, perhaps. Since there were so many ideas and suggestions from other people in their LOCs, I really can't think of anything else to add, except keep up the good work.[9]

Thanks for ARTFORUM ONE-she's a beauty! Congratulations on your new babe who seems to have popped into the world full grown. Your timing sure was good for me. Over the last of years I have been discovering media fandom's world of zines. And just recently, I

tried writing and drawing a few things. I've made all the neophyte'a mistakes—sending originals of work, forgetting to send return postage, using media that are hard to reproduce. It is wonderful to have a publication like yours mere people can exchange basic information like this along with the fascinating technical stuff people are doing. Beginners always need mentors and here you are—a glorious collective Art Mom!

I enjoyed all the different points of view represented in ARTFORUM's pages—from artist to writer to lined to just plain fan. I think there is a large and varied audience for your zine. It should (if all is right with the Galaxy) be a huge success. [10]

Issue 2

Artforum 2 was published in September 1989 and contains 48 pages.

cover of issue #2, Emily Penfield
  • LoCs (2)
  • Doing the Convention Art Show Circuit by Jean Kluge (17)
  • What Have I Done? Art Auction Etiquette by Susan M. Garrett (21)
  • Home-Made Zine Production by Kathy Cox (23)
  • A Closer Look: Interview of Emily Penfield: Artforum Interview with Emily Penfield by M.A. Smith (26)
  • Rerun: a Critique by Berkeley Hunt (35, 41), see that page
  • Shooting Pictures from a TV, an article about how to create telepics by Diane Roe (36)
  • Stills and Candids, Oh My! by Cinda Gillilan (38)
  • Reader Services (42)
  • Glossary (42)
  • Artist Listings (43)
  • Zine Listings (43)
  • Bulletin Board (47)

Issue 3

Artforum 3 was published in March 1990 and contains 45 pages. It is an intricate piece of beautiful artwork in itself, with linocut bits of original signed art, "foiled" squares, and sample paper glued in by hand as examples of media choices.

cover of issue #3, Adrian Morgan
  • LoCs (1)
  • I Know What I Like: An Art Show Shpper's Primer by Susan M. Garrett (13)
  • Getting Started: Preparing for Your First Assignment by Teegar Taylor (16)
  • Tricks and Tips for the Copy Shop by Stan Day (23)
  • a review of Destiny #2, see that page (33)
  • Linocuts: Relief Goes Beyond Potato Stamps by M.A. Smith (35)
  • Anyone Can Draw! by M.A. Smith (38)
  • Reader Services (43)
  • Bulletin Board (45)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 3

Though short-lived, Artforum was a very important zine for me. Not only were its production values high and its contents invaluable, the zine gave me a sense of respect for what I do, a sense of community with my fellow fannish artists, and a standard of excellence to meet In my opinion, that's a lot for some sheets of paper that someone you don't really know mails to you every few months to do. I say about Artforum something I have yet to say about any other zine I've ever contributed to: I feel honored to have been a part of it.[11]

... this [zine] was so classy and informative and inspiring...and they're not doing it anymore. A deft combination of elegance and education.[12]

...stuff about art from people who knew what they were talking about covering everything from technique to editor-artist-writer relations to...oh, never mind. It's dead now. I don't want to talk about it any more. Damn.[13]

Artforum is an art-oriented zine whose raisond'etre'xs to provide a channel of communication between artists and art lovers and to provide answers to questions both groups raise concerning the art medium. In Issue One, I read about zine appearance - i.e. choice of printing zines, mimeo versus straight typing and/or reduced printing. Ms. Bartlett's article on the benefits of mimeo over the other more expensive means of printing your zine was well-thought out, well-written, informative and showed how beautiful a properly prepared mimeoed zine should look. It made me want to take back all my comments on mimeo; it looked really radical. Susan M. Garrett's 'Confessions of a Fanzine Printer" states in a matter of fact manner why she brought her own copier to print her zines herself and to provide a means of printing zines for other zine editors. She discussed the problems inherent in becoming a publisher and why she no longer prints other peoples' zines. She then lists some suggestions on how to choose a printer, copy service or n actual typesetter that all zine-eds should follow. After all, some copy services won't typeset or copy "slash" or stories with an adult subject, have restrictions on the type of art they will print, etc. From the publishing angle and the layout of a zine, we make our way into two interesting articles on the choice of materials to use while drawing: Coquille paper and regular copy paper. The article on Coquille-Paper was really an interview of Marty Siegrist, an artist this writer has not seen since both SPACE 1999 conventions - one in Columbus, the other in Pittsburgh, and how long she has been drawing, how she lays out a particular piece as well as her preference for Coquille Paper. The article on the use of Xerox paper as your art paper was written by Teegar Taylor, who explains how she arrived at this choice of paper. Ms. Taylor also gives the reader a very interesting look at her development as an artist with three samples of her work using stippling and pointillism ranging from an early Vulcan to the later Saavik. With these thought provoking and intriguing articles and the promise of articles in the future on nudity, adult illustration, portraiture vs. illustration, how to matte a piece, how to buy a piece of art, how to submit work to an editor, how to choose to illustrate a story from an editor's guidelines and more, Artf orum promises to be a must by for all fans desiring to learn about the creative process.[14]


  1. ^ from Comlink #39
  2. ^ from an LoC by Bill Hupe in "Art Forum" #2
  3. ^ from an LoC by Chris Soto in "Art Forum" #2
  4. ^ from an LoC by Lorraine Bartlett in "Art Forum" #2
  5. ^ from an LoC by Roberta Rogow in "Art Forum" #2
  6. ^ from an LoC by Jan Booth Frampton in "Art Forum" #2
  7. ^ from an LoC by Dorana Durgin Shiner in "Art Forum" #2
  8. ^ from an LoC by Catherine Churko in "Art Forum" #2
  9. ^ from an LoC by Patti Heyes in "Art Forum" #2
  10. ^ from an LoC by Sue Frank in "Art Forum" #2
  11. ^ In 1993, a zine ed asked her readers in Psst... Hey Kid, Wanna Buy a Fanzine? #4 to list their "Five Favorite Fanzines." This was one fan's comment. For more, see Psst... Hey Kid, Wanna Buy a Fanzine?/Top Five Fanzines Questionnaire.
  12. ^ from Psst... Hey Kid, Wanna Buy a Fanzine? #4
  13. ^ from Psst... Hey Kid, Wanna Buy a Fanzine? #4
  14. ^ from an issue of Where None Have Gone Before