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How to Make Your Own Popular Culture

August 12, 2014 | Christine | Comments (2) Facebook Twitter More...

Big Book of Pop Culture by Hal Niedzviecki cover imageWritten by Hal Niedzviecki, founder of Broken Pencil magazine, The Big Book of Pop Culture: a How-to Guide for Young Artists is a great book for anyone interested in current pop culture trends and wants to try making their own mark.

The first part of the book, “Everything You Need to Know Before You Make Your Own Pop Culture,” talks about how popular culture works and why you should make your own. It covers all sorts of creative ideas and thoughts, including everything from do-it-yourself (publishing your own book or making a music video) and culture jamming (disrupting media culture, like highway billboards, to promote a completely different message), to things like plunder (taking familiar riffs and pop culture images to create something entirely new) and underground (an artistic subculture that exists outside of mainstream popular culture). There are also come great reading lists provided in this section, along with interesting interviews with TV critics, authors, and zines about current pop culture trends.

The second half of the book, “From Acting to Zines: The A – Z’s of Making Your Own Pop Culture,” offers advice about the hands-on side of popular culture.  Starting with the do’s and don’ts of writing
and publishing you own zines, this part continues with everything you need to know about subjects like: how to create your own original movies; how to create your own pirate radio station online; and even how to set up your own indie TV station. There are lots of great pointers included in this section, like how to ensure you’re not breaking copyright laws, how to keep things interesting for viewers and readers alike, and how to make yourself heard using equipment combinations that won’t break the bank.

I think that The Big Book of Pop Culture would be a great reference for anyone who wants to create their own piece of independent art, music, or writing. I really enjoyed leafing through this book, and found the information to be relevant and useful for anyone who wants to share their own independent artistic expressions. Everything is very clearly written, and the inclusion of interviews and book lists in each chapter provide some great resources that can be found either online or even through your local public library branch.

So, what do you think of The Big Book of Pop Culture? Let me know.