Larry Lewis on BlenderPosted by in reviews
An intriguing notion sparked by a friend’s unconvincingly played D&D character has transformed into an artist’s quest to address the meaning of gender. From the somewhat obsessive-compulsive mind of CNW’s Larry Lewis, the result is the passionately rendered story of Blender.
At CNW’s May meeting, Larry Lewis rewarded fellow members with free copies of his micro-mini comic “Humility”, plus an engaging and rollicking tale of how Blender came about as the graphic novel exploring sex and gender against the backdrop of a slightly altered Seattle cityscape.
The main action of Blender involves Danny, the man who suddenly changes into a woman and then changes back and forth at random and inopportune intervals.
As “Dani” the pretty gal too hot to wear much costuming, our hero struggles with cultural stereotypes as s/he deals with an ever changing reality and identity.
Larry described how he developed the concept for his epic graphic novel. Taking the grossly played female D&D character as the jumping off point, Larry was later challenged by a female friend who contended that no man could write a truly convincing female character.
That got Larry’s knee jerking for the last twenty years.
Larry started writing and sketching, working the story, interviewing subjects, and discussing the issues with friends as time and circumstance allowed for twenty years.
Last April Larry picked up the project again with the gusto usually associated with a man dealing with a midlife crisis. He started drawing the actual finished artwork for Blender in a pre-bound sketchbook.
Over the years Larry has honed his storytelling techniques and found ways of “island hopping” around writing blocks until the plot hooks reveal themselves to him.
Larry talked about his artistic influences, which included others who seem unafraid of density, such as that of the Nausicaa series and the artwork of Donna Barr and Terry Moore.
Writing deep characters with humor and scientifically grounded plot action, Larry has some honest and supportive readers to offer him feedback as he creates the story.
Tackling the what ifs and especially the medical implications of Danny’s transformation is intriguing stuff, served up with layers of action involving shadowy groups and conspiracy thrills as Blender’s plot thickens.
Created first as a web comic, Blender will eventually be published at 1500 pages, including footnotes on Larry’s fascinating Alternate Seattle.
Those interested in becoming characters or getting their favorite Capitol Hill hotspot featured in Blender may contact the creator to see how they could purchase their own place in the graphic novel.