A quarterly zine filled with hand drawn interviews and sketches, each issue centered around one thought-provoking question.
Ever since I discovered the zine community, I’ve been crazy about reading and making these handmade, independently published magazines. Zine culture is all about sharing and creating without boundaries—there are no rules of any sort for what content should go in a zine, no predefined formats or restrictions. I love beautiful printed things, and the zine community has been a huge personal inspiration.
At the beginning of 2017, I decided to start a zine series exploring some of the questions that have been bothering me, through the perspective of other people's stories. 4 Questions to Make You Think is the result of that search, with an issue for each season and one filled to the brim with hand drawn interviews and sketches. Every issue is composed of stories and reflections revolving around one central question—for instance, “what makes you happy?”, or “how do you deal with loneliness?”
To help bring this project to life and share it with others, I experimented with running my first Kickstarter campaign. The campaign helped fund the publishing of 4 Questions, and helped me build an existing community of supporters even before the first issue was released. The response was phenomenal—with over 100 backers, 4 Questions surpassed the funding goal and the spring issue was well on its way to the hands of readers by the start of March 2017. 4 Questions was also awarded a “Project We Love" badge from the Kickstarter team.
Through 4 Questions, I learned a lot about having thoughtful conversations, asking questions that draw out stories, and truly listening. In the months before the publication of each zine, I spent hours conducting interviews and illustrating—every issue opened up new formats for storytelling. Past issues included full-page illustrations, comics, lists of logical fallacies, and even song recommendations from different readers to accompany the central question. Interviewees came from diverse backgrounds—from people randomly walking by, to strangers from the Internet, to close friends whose stories I wanted to share.
To open up access to 4 Questions outside of the Kickstarter community, I sold the zines at SF Zine Fest, and designed and coded a website (now defunct) to showcase previews from each issue. Different issues of 4 Questions to Make You Think were also available in independent bookstores throughout San Francisco.
The project also received some nice words from It's Nice That and Kickstarter's blog. Check them out below!
Kickstarter: Make 100 Is Back for 2018