STORY & CAST
"After a mix-up with their leases, two Lesbians, Jaden and Riley, must learn to share a small, one-bedroom apartment. Friendship, and eventually romance ensues."
My advice is to wait for her to actually take action, before you ask if she'll be redeemed.
I have a lot planned for Blaire as a character, so let us burn that bridge when we come to it 😉
Before my tumblr termination, I got a lot of asks about what readers could expect representation-wise.
"Will there be any intersex characters?
"Will there be any Jewish characters?"
"Will there be any Latino characters?"
"Will there be any disabled a characters?"
"Will there be any mentally ill/disordered characters?"
"Will there be any detransitioned characters?"
"Will there be any happily transitioned homosexual characters?" (no, fuck off)
"Will there be any feminine lesbian characters?" (no, fuck off)
While I understand, and even sympathise with the intention of questions like this, receiving them was very frustrating and disheartening. It felt as though the quantity of representation boxes I could/ would tick off was more important than the quality of my current characters, or the story I've chosen to write.
I feel like this mindset has gotten a little out of control, and tumblr is an absolute breeding ground for valuing the fact there is representation, over the quality of it.
There's a level of entitlement involved in asking this of creators, especially those of us who are single-person teams.
I am not a huge company with the finances to accurately, respectfully and satisfyingly represent every single marginalized group. And honestly, any company that tries to claim that they do do that, is probably just looking to sell you something.
I appreciate, and hold no ill-will towards the readers who have asked me this question, but don't particularly want to be asked again.
Stories are not meant to represent every experience, and that's okay. I strongly encourage anyone yearning for it, to also, BE/create the representation they want to see.
Male characters in Lease Bound only exist as vehicles to further develop the important (See: female) characters.
I have chosen to do this as direct response to the plethora of male creators who waffle out excuses for the lack of female characters in their works.
While they try to save face, saying things like "I just don't understand women", I am honest in saying "I do not want to humanise men. There already exists countless pieces of fiction that serve as propaganda to men's humanity. I am choosing not to add to it."
This is also why I've avoided showing any positive heterosexual relationships in the story. It sets up an unrealistic expectation about what het/bi women can expect from partnering with men.
Lack of Fathers?Some readers have expressed concern about the lack of father characters in Lease Bound... the lesbian webcomic and suggest that it is a racially motivated decision.
So I have made a chart that details every father who's appeared in Lease Bound.
You may notice it is not a high number across the board, regardless of race, and will remain as such.
(see the male character policy section again for why).
With regards to Jaden's emo-hair specifically, she didn't dye it, but just braided in red extensions/fabric to achieve the look.
I was even gonna call it Stephen Galaxy, but then I was informed that’s apparently the nsfw tag for Stephen Universe. So had to rework it x-x
By the time I had this scene drafted (late 2022) ,I’d seen so many examples of children cartoons informing gender identities that I figured I’d just go more generic. So you get to choose which children’s show you think it is. No wrong answers! 😂
MAKING LEASE BOUND
As a one-woman show, I wear a lot of hats. There’s many things to be done before I can even put down the first line of a page.
Story planning - Lease Bound has an ending written, as well as some large plot points standing between now and the finish line, but there is gaps in between. I organize scene ideas into chapters. Once I'm ready to start work on that chapter, I refine all the scenes into a solid script with dialogue + actions/blocking.
Thumbnails - Basically a tiny, grayscale version of the finished page. Written scenes are organized into pages. Sometimes this requires a lot of re-dos to make sure it flows well.
Sketching - The tiny thumbnail is stretched out to it's proper size. I create boarders, and start doing detailed sketches.
Lineart - Sketches are lined over with a finer pen-tool, and then removed. Lots of back and forth to make sure the energy of the sketch isn't lost in crisper lines.
Colouring - I apply flat colours, and then shading + backgrounds. I usually decide on an entire colour pallet before a chapter begins to make sure things stay consistent.
Dialogue - Dialogue is added, and often changed to either fit in the page, or to fit better with the visuals.
Here's a Speedpaint of the page-making process, from sketch to completion
Currently, I use Clip Studio Paint PRO - but I've done a lot of swapping and changing over the years XD
===Chapter 1 + 2 + Prologue===
Cheap pens + printer paper. Then scanned.
Colouring + Line Cleanup:
Cheap lead pencils + lined notebook i had lying around Then scanned.
Lineart + Colouring:
Gimp 2.6 (pages 0-7)
MSPAINT-XP (pages 8-19)
Sketch+ Lineart + Colouring:
8 year old tablet died. No money to fix.
cheap lead pencils + printer paper. Scanned in.
Dark blue craft paper, with felt pen patterns drawn onto it for texture/different levels of darkness.
Gimp 2.6. with mouse, not tablet U_U
cheap lead pencils + printer paper. Scanned in. (pages 0-69)
Gimp 2.8 (pages 69-98)
Gimp 2.8 with mouse (pages 0-31)
Gimp 2.8 with tablet (pages 31-98)
===Chapter 7 + 8===
Sketch+ Lineart + Colouring:
Gimp 2.8 with tablet.
Sketch+ Lineart + Colouring:
Gimp 2.8 with tablet. (pages 0-14)
Clip Studio Paint Pro (pages 15-20)
===Chapter 10 (and on wards)===
Sketch+ Lineart + Colouring:
Clip Studio Paint Pro
On July 24th 2022, Lease Bound's first volume made it's debut in physical form. 50 copies were printed, bought and shipped out.
Both Volume 1 and 2 are now available for order again.
I am working alongside several incredibly generous volunteers, who have offered their time to translate LB pages. It's a slow process as it's entirely free - and is secondary to continuing to get more pages out - but translation options are definitely coming in future!
Oh man I have had MANY thoughts about this. I feel like it would be incredibly fun to do!
I always get stuck in logistics though.
1) I feel like I should pay the people who lend their voices. And much like hiring on women to help produce LB, I don’t really have that income.
I don’t know how effective I’d be as a voice director so I'd be concerned about the amount of guidance I could provide to the voice actors.
I would also like to take care in casting actors that match the race of the characters and not just all white people.
I’m on the fence regarding the accuracy of accents- given Lease Bound is set in Australia and there’s lots of Aussie slang slipped in. But it's definitely a much lesser concern, and I think if it was the only thing holding me back, that it could just come down to a matter of suspension of disbelief.
It's definitely not entirely off the table, I just don't think I have the resources to pull it off right now. That said, if it's something any woman reading this would like to be in charge of, I'd be more than happy to co-operate/help in anyway I can. IE: providing blank pages without speech bubbles, giving advice on moods/tones ect.
Enough of her followers reported my patreon page that I was suspended. To lift the suspension (and allow payments again) I was asked to remove "offending" content. I chose to leave the platform instead.
Long Version Here
I’ve been involved in online radical feminist/gender critical spaces since 2016, and started making Lease Bound in 2017.
I'd also noticed a rise in homophobic trans-rhetoric in many creative circles I was running in. Most notably indie webcomics.
Suddenly, every 'lesbian webcomic' I read was actually about a heterosexual coupling. One lead a man, pretending to be female, and the other a woman pretending to be homosexual.
Worst of all the dishonesty, the sex of the man usually wouldn't be revealed right away, instead being an unwanted surprise once I got invested in the story.
So basically, I wasn’t seeing the representation for lesbians (or women in general) I wanted, so I set out to create what I wanted to see. This is why Jaden and Riley state explicitly that they’re lesbians right in the first chapter, I didn’t want any confusion or vagueness about their sexuality.
The infamous AGPgang from Chapter 3 were similarly dedicated to every piece of """lesbian""" media that pulled a ‘surprise one of these characters is actually a be-dicked individual with she/her pronouns’ on me.
"Surprise! You thought this was just a cute lesbian romance? It is, but also there will be NO tolerance for men who call themselves lesbians. Surprise! Hope you like the taste of your own medicine <3"
And here we are 5 years later!
Didn’t find the answer you were looking for here? Feel free to submit your
question below and I’ll be happy to answer it!