Celebrating Magical Zines At Auckland Zinefest

tree_people.pngIt’s strange to think that my sister and I made dozens of these zines when we were younger, without realising it. As I walked in the Auckland Art Gallery at the different stands, it felt like being at a market, with all these wonderful zines of stories and beautiful art surrounding everyone. I got a book by Nicola titled “Where are you from?” which immediately caught my eye, because it’s one of those top questions that some people get asked on a weekly basis. The first thing I saw was the lovely clouds that you can see in the photo below. They are so cute and soft looking. I was considering getting it, but then thought about how white never goes well in staying clean, and before you know it, it might turn into a sad grey cloud.

There was a wide variety of different zine stalls from insects, feminism, eclectic portraits, comics, crafts and earrings, stickers, badges, poetry, sexuality, gender, animals, boys in bands, accessories, fashion, self love and many more.¬†Auckland Zinefest is a non-profit community festival that celebrates and promotes DIY and self publishing in Auckland city. It’s a wonderful creative event to discover the work of many different artists and creative cookies. The Zinefest¬†is run by volunteers who have a passion for community arts projects and zines. Zines are a great way for creative expression and sharing your own stories and experiences.

When I saw the clay earrings made by Natalie, I asked her to save it for me while I went to get cash out. I have this strange thing for teeth, hence why I keep my braces teeth mold beside my bedside table. I am also quite a sweet tooth, so somehow they were telling me, I need to belong on your ear lobes. On the bottom left is just some of the mini zines my sister and I made from ten years ago. One of them (the colourful one) is her explanation of periods, which is quite interesting and helpful way of letting someone know that they’re not dying when they experience their period for the first time. However, my all time favourite would have to be Mushy’s Adventure by Tammy, which is the one that is slightly fading.

Cindy Mangomini | Fashion Illustrator

2013-week-50-how-to-live-like-a-french-girl-673x480Cindy is an illustrator and blogger from Maastricht, in the south of the Netherlands. She graduated at the art school Fontys Academy of Visual Arts, specializing in illustrative design. Her work is all handmade, where she likes to mix materials and techniques. Cindy uses a mix of acrylic paint, gouache, water colour, colour pencils, pen and ink and collage technique. She loves using lino cuts which she cuts out of old floor parts and hand print on recycled paper using acrylic paint. She tries to use as much water based paint and recycled materials as possible.

After graduating she started working in fashion. She worked as a visual merchandiser and then carried on opening up her own boutique. When she was a shop owner, she started her Mangomini blog where she posted drawings of what she wore. She is a regular contributor at Hello Giggles and Sparknotes. When she is not drawing things she likes to spend her time eating chocolate, reapplying lip balm, collecting nice pictures and music, drinking wine with friends and over-thinking everything. Some of my favourite blog posts, is the imaginary Pinterest Pages and the Disney Princess style.

Check out Cindy’s¬†work below (all work from her Etsy/Blog). Support her on the social media links down below:

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Etsy | Blog

alexa-chung-style-cindy-mangomini.jpgHow to Dress like Alexa Chung РLeopard Coats, Chuck Taylors, Turtlenecks, fedora hat, Longchamp bag, tartan scarf, minimal jewellery, Book: It, Overalls, Shirts, Denim Shorts.how-to-be-parisian-cindy-mangomini.jpgHow to be Parisian РBallet flats, Chanel No. 5, lace lingerie, striped shirt, classic sunglasses, leather jacket, black heels, eat pastries, cheese, drink coffee and wine.clueless-halloween-costume-insta.jpg

Clueless Halloween Costume – Tartan bag, yellow matching suit, long white socks, black beret, white heels, pearl earrings, fluffy pink pen, big telephone.2014-week-7-how-to-do-british-style-673x480.jpg

How to do British Style – Always carry an umbrella, quirky accessories, brogues or loafers, statement coats, tea dresses and biker jackets.2013-week-52-how-to-survive-the-holidays-breakfast-at-tiffanys-style-673x480.jpg

Breakfast at Tiffany’s Style – Big Black Sunglasses, Kitten heels, pink lipstick, trench coat, sleep mask, Little black dress and a bit hat.2013-week-46-how-to-dress-like-alexa-chung.jpgHow to dress like Alexa Chung – Peter pan collared clothing, Cat ballet flats, leopard boots, winged eyeliner, buttoned up shirts and high waisted shorts.

A Rant On People Who Make Fun Of Arts Degrees

39e8b74daffbaa701daec2aa2d519dd7.jpgCreativity starts the moment you are born into the world. As a child, you start to create things with your hands. When I was young, I remember my parents taking my Sister and I to Ballet, Piano and Drawing lessons. That really started off my love for creativity and self expression. Over the years I would have Flute, Singing, Piano and Music Theory lessons, and they were truly some of the best times. During high school, those were the lessons that I genuinely loved. I remember being asked many times (as one of the few Asians in the country side) for help in Maths class, but Maths was one of my worse subjects a long with Chemistry. The only times I felt I really enjoyed and excelled in class, was through the subjects: Music, Art, History and English.

I know for myself and many creatives (though not all) are happy to make a living doing what we love¬†regardless of how much we earn. Some creative people are less likely to climb a corporate ladder. Our¬†ability to express¬†creativity¬†makes us feel meaning and passion for what we do. I¬†just couldn’t imagine in a million years, working in a tall building at a desk, working 9-5 for a corporate company (touch wood!). The reason why Arts is often misunderstood, is because many people have the question mark over their head of “But, how does that make any money?”¬†or many people don’t see the value of the creative arts, to which I feel a headache that makes me stop myself from interacting from people who have this mindset. It means that they lack the appreciation for creativity, imagination and self expression.

Arts is something that you need to be somewhat passionate about, have ongoing persistence, a creative mind and work hard for (like any other job/degree)¬†if you are to find a good job. Most¬†degrees will not necessarily give you a¬†related job as soon as you graduate. Perhaps if you’re lucky, but otherwise some may need to do an internship, have contacts or build up their portfolio. I really believe that life is not about money, even though in reality we need it to eat, travel and pay rent. There’s an importance in not paying too much value to it though. When I walk in an art gallery, I feel this sense of peace and inspiration. When I previously studied at university, the amount of hard work and passion many musicians have is really admirable.

Many people think it’s the ‘easy’ option, but believe me, I know the amount of hard work it takes.¬†In my experience with music, it’s the hours of practicing, preparation and exams (outside of school) that is not seen. A 5 minute piece of music, can take anything from 3 months, 6 months or even a year to prepare from ongoing¬†practice. It won’t¬†come as a surprise to many musicians who may have a similar story, as I did 21 exams in the space of 7 years out of school time, of flute, piano and music theory exams. The hours for performances, competitions, recordings, scholarships and auditions are also unseen. It is similar with art in the sense that one sees the art or photo in a moment, but the amount of time, preparation and energy is often overlooked.

Perhaps there is also a judgment towards arts, because in a sense it allows us to speak freely and express individually. Every person plays the piano differently Рno one plays it the exact same style. Every artist draws a different way and every actor has their own way of acting. Whereas most subjects that are looked up at, involve a lot of facts. This is also a reflection of society in many ways, the way that we are taught facts in school, but very less of the time are we taught creativity. An example is how I felt literature was not as appreciated in my school. The students that were most praised or placed top students were the ones who had top marks in science and mathematics.

A few¬†examples of Arts degrees are: History, Language, Music, Fine Arts, Literature, Philosophy,¬†Anthropology, Art History, Drama, English, Film Studies, Creative Writing, Religious Studies and Sociology. All of these somewhere sometime needs someone to have the knowledge for that job. Perhaps not all of them may earn as much as a Doctor, Engineer or Scientist, ¬†but as someone who loves the creative arts for what it is, it really doesn’t matter. We’ll always need architects, teachers, writers, film directors, actors, singers, dancers, artists, musicians, museum curators, librarians and so on.¬†¬†Some of the most beautiful things in the world comes from creativity. Creatives make the world a far more colourful place.

wonderful art by yelena bryksenkova 

A Pocketful of Loveliness

Two Young Girls at the Piano by Auguste Renoir 1892

This painting of two girls at the piano was one of the first paintings that was introduced to me as a young girl. It makes me smile, especially at the time when I was learning how to play the piano. I remember there was a Nancy Tichborne Cats book, full of watercolour paintings. She inspired me to start water colour painting, and I still remember fondly the time my old black and white cat, Summer came and laid on the paint by accident and had a wonderful blue patch on his belly for quite some time. There was a book of all the stories by Beatrix Potter, such as Peter Rabbit and Tom Kitten. It was story tellers like¬†her¬†that made me love animals, art and writing even more. Just a few things to discover if you’re feeling curious:

Blog: The Messy Heads

images from @themessyheads

I recently stumbled upon The Messy Heads blog. They are also a quarterly magazine ¬†where “Each magazine focuses on a theme and explores it in depth, inviting you to dive deeper and learn more about yourself.” I love the vintage vibes and the positive¬†articles.

Clothing: Mirador

images from @mirador_

I¬†came¬†across this wonderful nonna organic sweater¬†while I was casually scrolling down the Instagram feed. I think the¬†Gabriella Foreman film photograph printed on is so beautiful with the flowers, and I love the way it looks so comfortable (it’s 100% organic cotton).

Youtuber: simply_kenna

images from @simply_kenna

Kenna is the sweetest person, and even though I don’t know her, I can really sense that when I watch her videos. They are always radiating with creativity, positivity and a sprinkle of chocolate. Not to mention her style and Instagram feed is full of whimsical and fairy like wonder.

Instagram: @dxvghter

This one is specially for the cat lovers, tea drinkers, book readers, succulent lovers and nature wanderers. I really like Instagram feeds that show someones personality, rather than emulating a trend. This one makes me feel peaceful and makes me want to get a cat!

Earrings: Okaymontana

Creations by @okaymontana

Montana is a artist who draws about Menstruation, Sexuality, Mental health & Feminism. I like the awareness she creates and the way it can relate to many people. Not to mention her lovely creation of breast friends earrings that you can buy here.

//all images from the original creator \\

The Key to Paradise

4d9c485b70e858a6db9b09149781dc91A beautiful friend of mine sent me a post card with an image of the Pantheon. It’s glowing light into the building and has perfectly proportioned architecture. It’s incredible, that I felt like¬†it couldn’t be real.¬† The simple reminders in our life that there is so much beauty in this world. There was a little poem inside the post card, that I found really inspiring, and I hope it inspires you too.

The key to Paradise

Find the time to think.

Find the time to pray.

Find the time to laugh.

This is the fount of power.

This is the greatest power on earth.

This is music for the soul.

Find the time to play.

Find the time to love and be loved.

Find the time to give.

This is the secret of eternal youth.

This is the privilege given by God.

The day is too short to be selfish.

Find the time to read.

Find the time to be a friend.

Find the time to work.

This is the fount of wisdom.

And the road to happiness .

And the price of success.

Find the time to be charitable.

This is the key to Paradise.

Madre Teresa of Calcutta

Cherish Every Memory

rainSpending time wandering around places during the day, always makes me feel adventurous. Which is why long walks are simply the best. Whether you are alone or walking with someone. There is always something about taking time back, just to relax and seize the moment. pretty lightsThese circular lights of beauty hanging out. They are like little golden globes of candle light. Some of the things I love about Chippendale, is the wonderful feeling of home, artsy corners, small cafes and park full of dogs. lasersThe room was extremely dark, that the photo does not do justice to show how many pretty green lasers there were. The misty room, made me feel like I was in an action movie, trying to avoid the laser lights, imagining they might burn off my legs.IMAG1946These circular art rotated slowly, making a small windy noise. I am always hesitant to stand too close to art, especially when¬†today I went to sit on a chair in the dark room within the art gallery, while wiping the things off the seat, realising it was flour on the seat and that it was a piece of art.IMAG1939The person on the left in stripes, who makes me laugh about strange things, is quite possibly the funniest and most entertaining person ever. You know when you see a random huge mirror in a studio warehouse. You have to take a photo together.yghThis piece of art work makes me feel like I am in an imaginary cool jazz bar that I will never go to, while drinking something melony and sweet. The thought of today is to …Cherish every moment and every memory.

petal me love


This is truly incredible. What a beautiful way to represent art with flower petals. I really admire the way artists can speak their heart out for us to see. Lim Zhi Wei (or Limzy) is a Malaysian artist who studied fine arts at Nanyang Academy of Fine Art Singapore (NAFA) in 2011, majoring in Western Painting. Her artwork bring out the simple joys and delight to life.  Please click the link below to discover more beauty.

 Love, Limzy


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Photo Source: Beautiful Art work by Lim Zhi Wei (Limzy) / /  <3