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Behind the scenes: Posterzine

Posted by Stine Fantoft Berg on Wednesday, September 9 2015

Marcroy Smith, founder of People of Print, on the freedom and focus of his new Posterzine project

Those inky innovators at People of Print have been at it again. Posterzine reads like a magazine but folds out into an A1 poster that can be hung on the wall, and the first issue features design legend Eike König interviewed by writer Liv Siddall, alongside a selection of Eike’s own work.

We caught up with People of Print’s founding editor Marcroy Smith to find out more about the new project.

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Tell me about the idea behind the Posterzine!
The Posterzine is inspired by one of my favourite people, Felix Dennis. He once made a poster magazine – I think the first one was on Bruce Lee. I think it’s a great format.

It’s the same size as Print Isn’t Dead, and it’s very light so we can add it to shipments without it affecting the shipping costs. And it has a very straightforward, focused form: an introduction to who we’re featuring, an interview, and a poster. I love posters – everyone loves posters!

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You’re currently publishing Print Isn’t Dead magazine, and earlier this year you launched a 336-page coffee table book, People of Print. Why have you decided to start a whole new publishing project now?
It’s just really fun, that’s the main thing. I enjoy creating visually attractive things to put on my wall. And as with all of our projects, Posterzine is a great way to give different writers and designers a platform to showcase their work.

As a stand-alone project I’m very excited about Posterzine – I like the monthly frequency, and I like the fact it focuses on one thing, whereas a magazine needs an overall theme or topic. I love creating Print Isn’t Dead, but a magazine takes ages and it’s expensive. The Posterzine is a great way for us to publish on a more regular basis. It’s affordable and the format is convenient – it’s just one big sheet of paper.

It also allows us to get creative with exploring different printing processes. We’ll be using two Pantone spot colours per issue and we’ll experiment with different inks such as fluorescents and metallics.

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Liv Siddall’s piece on Eike König is so well-written and personal. I love her description of him as ‘the Santa Claus of the visual arts world’. How did the interview come about?
Actually, that’s one of the reasons why the Posterzine is being launched at this particular moment. We featured Eike in issue three of Print Isn’t Dead. We were just about to go to print and were waiting for Eike to send us a couple of sentences to go with his work. Then at the very last minute we received a 3,000-word text – it turned out that Eike had asked Liv to interview him specifically for us. And it was great! But there was just no way that we could fit it in the magazine, so we found ourselves with this amazing content, but nowhere to fit it.

It was the perfect incentive to get started with Posterzine, which had been in the back of my head for a while. Having Eike featured in the first issue is perfect. He’s a really great guy, and Liv captures him very well.

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How do you want people to approach the Posterzine?
Obviously, I’d love for people to put the poster on their wall once they’ve read it. Also, I really like the idea of a collection. In our feature on Oz magazine in issue two, we visited John Delany, who has collected all the issues. They’re all in separate sleeves and in pristine condition.

I would love to create something that people want to collect. We have been experimenting with putting small punch holes in the poster to hang it by, and I’m going to get one of our friends who makes products to create a wall hanger for them. The idea is that you can slot the poster on for each issue. We haven’t got around to it yet, but it’s part of future planning.

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What else can you reveal about what’s to come?
We’ll be publishing on a monthly basis, and for issue two we’ll be featuring the screenprinters Heretic. Since this one is very typographic, I wanted something that could balance it out. I just went to see Heretic’s Chromotopia show and thought that their work would go really well with the Posterzine. Their artwork is just amazing. We’ll be using two fluorescent inks; it should turn our pretty good! Anna, one of our authors, is interviewing them now, and we’ll go to print towards the end of the month.

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How can people get hold of a copy?
At the moment it’s only available from our online shop. It comes free of charge with a purchase of Print Isn’t Dead or the People of Print book. Or alternatively, you can get the Posterzine alone for £5,99 which includes global shipping.

Sounds good? Use the discount code ‘stack’ to get 15% off Posterzine when you buy it from People of Print’s Department Store.

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