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Regional artist brings 'zines for adults' to library

The very honest and funny Twin Ports artist Lydia Noble will return to the Cloquet Library Saturday to lead a workshop on 'zines for adults, 12-2 p.m. If you would like to learn some tips about how to create your own illustrated journal or comic book, this workshop is for you. Noble was at the library in January for the first-ever Teen Fan Con (watch for more details this fall about the 2020 Fan Con). She often writes and draws about her own life and the Twin Ports area. In addition to her online works, Noble has also done freelance work for such places as the Great Lakes Aquarium and Vikre Distillery. She also has a book, "Lake Superior Circle Tour," available for purchase.

Q When did you discover 'zines and what do you love about them?

A I first came to zines in college at UW-Stout while I was earning my bachelor's degree in comics and sequential art. Zines play a big role in the comic universe and my comics professor gave us extensive information and resources to learn more about them. A group of my close artist friends created Stout's first zine club (@hooplahzine) and totally kicked [butt] at getting people involved. It was a great space for artists, designers, and creative-minded people to share and publish art. And drink.

Q What is the story behind your nickname, 'Nibs'?

A There's a lot of things that were passed down to me by my father. I got his weak jawline, his strong love for beer, and his nickname. My dad inherited the title (and the jawline, and the penchant for lagers) from his father, but none of us are sure where the nickname originated from, although we think the bad chin and alcoholism have been in the family for generations.

Q Do you have a daily or weekly art routine? What works best for you?

A I'm very, very bad at routines, so I don't try to put my creativity into a box that I don't operate in in the rest of my life. Most of my work is driven by emotion and mood, and I can go weeks without making so much as a doodle if the inspiration isn't there. Rather than trying to conjure up my imagination, I let my life sort of wash over me, take in and process much as I can, and when my heart is good and ready, out comes art.

Q What do you hope participants in the workshop will learn/experience?

A I think if someone walks away from this workshop with even an iota of something they didn't walk in with, whether that's a newfound passion for a niche form of art distribution or an interesting fact they share with a coworker around the water cooler the next morning, it will have been a success.

Q You mentioned that you like to participate in as many local festivals and markets as possible. What are some of your favorite experiences so far?

A I'm a part of an artist collective called Art on Tap. We're a group of makers, craftspeople, and artists who take part in all types of art and craft shows across the Twin Ports, specializing specifically in events at breweries. During events, we're oftentimes cluttered into a really small footprint and being in such close proximity to each other for so long (some events have been almost 12 hours) was a bit suffocating at first, but over time has come to be a really nurturing and inspiring space. It's always good to be around other creative minds and see one another's work, as well as pick each others' brains about what's working and what isn't, both creatively as artists, but also professionally as people trying to make a living off of our work.

Q You talked once about getting your start by calling and approaching businesses to ask if they needed any design work done. How did you get the courage to do that?

A A lot of the businesses that I've done freelance for are places that I enjoyed spending my time and money at, long before I thought about working with them. Businesses in the Twin Ports are sort of unique in this way, that a lot of business owners are artists themselves in their own respect; they've got something they're passionate about and they want to express that passion by sharing it with others. It's just sort of perceptible in some businesses that they want to work with other people who share a passion, which is why I'm so happy to support those business in the first place. It really just took recognizing that the worst thing that could happen is a "no."

Q How can people learn more about your work and purchase your book?

A Come to the workshop. I'm so excited to meet other members of the community who love art and want to learn more about it. You can find my portfolio, as well as my shop, on my website at http://www.lydianoble.com. Check me out on social media, @lydianibsnoble. I'm also on LinkedIn (hire me, please).

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