Scarlett Carlos Clarke and Luisa Le Voguer Couyet are the women behind the latest zine to rock our worlds. ‘HATE’ is a bonafide celebration of those voices which too often go unheard, without the regurgitated glazing of glitter. Exhilarating, honest and rebellious, HATE focuses on an authentic representation of now.
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What was your motivation behind starting HATE?
Scarlett: We were both feeling frustrated and disillusioned with the amount of unpaid work we were getting and having to compromise, and thought we might as well channel some of this energy into our own projects and at least be able to put out ideas which we believed in and believe are important. We wanted to make something real and that didn’t gloss over truths and that we didn’t have to compromise !
Luisa: I wanted a space where I could publish my own writing, where I wouldn’t have to write in the ‘voice’ or style of someone else, for someone else. I found the idea of publishing our own stuff for ourselves really appealing, as we had all the control.
This issue heavily focuses on and explores sex to great detail; why do you think the mainstream media outlets shy away from authentic representations of sex?
Luisa: I think the mainstream media shy away from dealing with a lot of things. That was another reason I felt the need to do Hate, because a lot of the mainstream media don’t or can’t cover things which are seen to be controversial or unsavoury. The ‘mainstream’ exists for a reason; it is partly built upon giving the consumers what they want, but it also serves to advise and advertise. Sex is still a taboo, clearly. Authentic representations of sex would involve a multitude of things which I think the mainstream do not want deal with. I think a general openness towards sex would really benefit the whole of society. There are lots of problems with sex education in schools, and that is an issue, as the internet/mainstream media will then be the only source of information for young people.
Coming from a fellow independent publishers, the freedom to express ourselves creatively has always been our priority mission. Unfortunately, it comes at a cost (literally). What advice would you give to young creatives about the approach to zine making?
Scarlett: When Luisa and I decided we wanted to do this, we both saved some money and that funded the first print run. We set up a separate hate bank account so that money from the sales went straight back into that to fund the next issue. So it should start to pay for itself but there is no profit in zine making, you have to be doing it because you love it and you want to get your voice heard. If you have a clear idea of the direction you want to go and you have something you believe in, you can do it. My advice would be either do it very DIY and talk to people who run zine fairs – and see if there interested in your zine. hate does the ASP fair and there’s loads of people who make DIY zines, literally drawing straight onto paper. Or the other way if you want to get it printed properly is to get a group or a couple of your friends to all do it together and chip in. I think being more than one person you also have more diversity in the content for each issue.
Luisa: I feel like I’m not in any position to give any advice, but I would say just drawing, writing, working on your art and what you feel passionate about as much as you can is important. Hate started from a few drawings that Scarlett put together with some other stuff. The zine scene in the ‘90s was very basic; photocopies layered upon photocopies. With a big enough piece of paper, you can fold it up into 8 pages. I did that once with Ass Zine. Now, with everything being digitalised, that could be another potential way in for young creatives? I wanted to create something in print though, and so that meant us saving up some money to split the printing costs. Not giving up helps. Having a clear idea of what you are trying to say, what you believe in, and then submitting work or talking to people doing similar things is helpful.
What fuels your hate?
Luisa: I suppose what angers me are the things which I feel go against my own personal belief systems. Inequality, oppression, capitalism. Right now I hate the corruption and deception and the cruel ruthlessness of the government in power in the UK. Unequal distribution of power, power in the hands of the wrong people, bad intentions – I hate those things!
Scarlett: Hate is a very passionate word – it was a name that stuck, but people should not expect to open hate and it be full of people hating everything. If anything we are trying to focus on ways in which to channel our negative thoughts, find ways in which we can attempt to solve these taboos/problems by talking honestly and getting them out in the open.
Do you have a favourite interview/feature in this issue?
Scarlett: I love Dan Mitchell’s work, he contributed to the first issue as well I feel like his work has really strong visual imagery and text, its very confrontational and always has a subliminal message.
Luisa: I really enjoyed meeting Kayleigh O’Keefe, otherwise referred to as The Glorious Leader of Gashland – she’s amazing and it was so fun to be in her house. It was also nice working together with Scaz on something at the same time; I was interviewing Kayleigh as she lay naked looking regal in her ‘Gashpalace’, while Scarlett shot her.
Which of the long list of powerful women who have stomped through history do you feel have inspired you, your beliefs, and your work the most?
Luisa: Mary Wollstonecraft who wrote one of the first texts about female oppression; A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, in 1792! I like Germaine Greer, she says what she thinks and doesn’t give a shit. Naomi Woolf. I tattooed SCUM on my heel in tribute to Valerie Solanas. I like women who are extreme and fearless. ‘Deeds Not Words’ is a great slogan, started by the Suffragettes, who I also really admire. There are so many women throughout history the list could be endless. The goddesses of Pagan religions that pre-dated Monotheistic religions. Boudicca! She was amazing, she led an attack against the invading Romans. The women who were persecuted and burnt and labelled as witches. Rosa Luxembourg. Sophie Scholl who was killed by the Nazis for being a member of the White Rose organization. Looking at this selection, I think women who have been involved in politics, involved in a fight for what they believe in, is what I find really important and inspiring. Not giving a shit and just getting on with it. Not being afraid to be angry, to just fight for justice and question the structures around them. (I also love Blondie and The Slits and Karen Carpenter).
What can we expect from the next issue?
Scarlett: In the next issue we want to talk about mental health, something which affects practically everyone in some way.