Getting To Know Your Local Zinesters: Lee Noble and Amy Fortunato

Lee Noble + Amy Fortunato

No Kings Record Co. + Studio 

What was your first zine about and when was it made?
Lee: Disregarding early one or two-off pieces made in high school, the first zine I made with the intent to hand out was a small 3×3 photocopied book called “Drawings I Made With My Eyes Closed” in 2005.

Amy: The L.A. Zine Fest is going to the debut of our zine collaboration together. I made a couple things while I was in art school, but nothing worth noting. One of the great things about art school was writing an academic paper…about zines, and then getting to make one to illustrate the point.

Describe your most recent zine.
We’re working on a few right now. One is called “Black Mirror”, it’s a series of symmetrical shapes and drawings printed on a risograph, with a letterpressed cover. We’re super stoked about mixing media and different printing techniques.

Of all the things you’ve ever made, zine-related or otherwise, what’s your one favorite?
Lee: I was very pleased with the finishing on a zine from 2009, a collaboration with my friend Alex Barrett under the name Math Jet. It was a collection of photocopied newspaper collages with a nice letterpressed cover and sewn binding.

Amy: Last year I designed a book entitled /HYPHEN/ that focuses on creative collaboration in the D.I.Y. scene in Los Angeles and documented last year’s L.A. Lottery League. I conducted interviews, curated researched content, and also documented through photography. It was loosely inspired by the language of zines and I’ll have a few black and white copies available which are in a very limited edition at the moment.

Name three of your influences and how they affected your work. 
Lee: I was very impressed with the recent retrospective of Destroy All Monsters artwork at Prism Gallery here in LA. Those artists seem to have a really manic work ethic / tremendous output. Constantly doing things and mixing things. At some point they cross that threshold: quantity = quality. Makes me want to constantly work on projects.
I think the best American artist of all time is Jack Kirby. I’m all about the whole How-To-Draw-Comics-The-Marvel-Way thing.
Artist and musician Shawn Reed runs a record label called Night People that has really great screenprinted collage artwork. All handmade, with great color combinations. Something to be learned there.

Amy: I love the manic attention to detail that Martin Venezky brings to his design/collage work…I like the aesthetics of New Wave, and things that examine the macro/micro always bring me in. I am a sucker for well-executed ideas, and things that are obsessive and instant — like Polaroids!

What do you do when you’re not creating and how does it help or harm what you do artistically?
Lee: I love to look at and learn about the art world. I’m always kind of stealing ideas or being inspired by things. By the time they make it through my whole filter it’s usually something different so I think it’s a good thing to be constantly getting visual information.

Amy: I think our identities, both creative and complete, are comprised of outside influence in some way/shape/form. I really enjoy being surrounded by creative people, to the point that I forget that not everyone is. Creative interaction is an integral part of my process, and I’m also obsessed with looking at books.


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