Project Description

INKTOBER 2023 Day #31: FIRE.

“I’m surprised I have been doing this whole Plunger Monkey Inktober thing – referencing the various intellectual properties that have influenced, inspired, and shaped who I am as an artist and as person – for this long WITHOUT paying homage to the brilliant animated series ‘Avatar’, both ‘The Last Airbender’ and ‘The Legend of Korra’. I don’t think I could say enough good things about the shows. The stories are impactful, both from episode to episode, and the over-arching tales covering all the seasons. The world is so well thought out and beautifully designed. The animation is solid and a joy to watch. The characters are memorable and ‘alive’ and very easy to get attached to. There are some great philosophical elements interwoven with some fantastic martial arts, and there is great thought given to the interplay between the various elements and the Asian philosophies related to them. Creators Brian Konietzko and Michael DiMartino did such a thorough, amazing job with their creation, and their passion for it is plainly visible. Granted, as a martial artist, I’m a sucker for stories exactly like this, but it’s popularity is undeniable. I started watching the show when it first aired with my very young children, and I wonder if I would have even discovered it back then had it not been for them.
For anyone in the dark about the non-blue ‘Avatar’ show, it’s tough to encapsulate in a few words. My recommendation is to seek it out and watch it (and thank me later). For the purposes of explaining this particular image, though, the show takes place in a very Asian inspired ancient world, divided into kingdoms based on the four main elements: earth, air, fire, and water. Some people, called ‘Benders’ have the ability to manipulate or bend the elements to their will, often using them in martial applications (the attention to detail given to the animations for the different martial arts for each element is fantastic). There is one person at a time who has the ability to master all the elements, called the ‘Avatar’, and they are reincarnated into a different kingdom in a cycle. PMD here is doing a little ‘fire bending’, the martial style of which is based on Northern Shaolin Kung Fu. Seriously, just go watch the show if you haven’t, and if you have, you should probably watch it again (…and I probably should, too).”

Are you enjoying these monkey-filled pen and ink illustrations? Would you like to see even more of them, and be able to hold them in your very own hands? Then grab yourself a copy of my Inktober art book INKLINGS: