ATLA Drawing Inspriation

I wanted to share some drawings I did earlier this year that were inspired by Avatar: The Last Airbender. I was excited to rewatch this series, and Legend of Korra when they became available on Netflix. (Here is a post I wrote earlier this year about the show.)

In these drawings, I wanted to highlight some under represented cultures. It was also fun imagining what the Avatar universe fashion would be like in modern times.

Enjoy!

Fire Nation
Air Nomads
Earth Kingdom
Water Tribe

Avatar: The Last Airbender is on NETFLIX!!!!

The Netflix gods have finally deemed the US worthy of having access to this piece of amazing culture!!!

I am on my way to binge the show and here’s some of what I’m most excited to relive (not in any particular order):

1. The breaking down of sexism and featuring strong female characters. All the women in The Last Airbender are freaking amazing and no one can tell them otherwise. Just look at how Katara proved that to the Northern Water Tribe bending teacher. She proved that she belonged there, not because she was a girl, but because she was already an excellent water bender and desired to learn more. Toph is, of course, another one of my favorites. She’s stubborn, but just as dynamic. And I have to shout out Azula. She’s scary but she makes a great villain for both Aang and Zuko.

2. I love seeing how The Last Airbender incorporates eastern religions and beliefs. It’s a fun and interesting way of getting exposed to them and learning about how other people across the world tap into their spirituality. One of my favorite episodes is the Chakrah episodes, in which Aang has to learn to align his chakras in order to control how he goes in and out of the Avatar state. I also love seeing how each bending principle is derived from moves of different martial arts. Needless to say, I love when a show does its research.

3. Zuko’s transformation. He easily as the BEST character arc in the show. He went from believing his destiny to be capturing the Avatar so that he can gain back his honor and be welcomed back by his father (and, albeit, a super angsty teenager) to realizing his true destiny involving the Avatar (befriending him and helping him defeat his own father, Fire Lord Ozai).

4. Uncle Iroh, his infinite wisdom and his pursuit in tea and all his leisures! I freaking love Uncle Iroh. He has so much patience with Zuko and truly loves him, even at his angsty-est. Sometimes I wish I could have an Uncle Iroh in my life. Not to mention, he’s another great comic relief character.

5. Watching this show as an adult has me appreciate Aang’s kid perspective. I love how he’s always looking to have fun and doesn’t mind talking back to adults if need be. It’s really refreshing to watch, even though he does have this big task at hand. It’s like a reminder to not take life so seriously all the time and find the fun in life every once in awhile.

If you’re finding yourself bored during this quarantine, I highly recommend this show. Even if it is technically a kid’s show, there’s a lot to learn. The story and the world it takes place in is really well thought out and planned. I guarantee you’ll be satisfied at the end. And for fellow fans who are also rewatching, what parts are you looking forward to?

Have You Seen Your Yoni?

I love a good dating show, even though I tend to judge them a little (a lot) before I inevitably get into them (and love them). Bonus if they make me think… and boy, was I surprised when Too Hot to Handle, Netflix’s latest reality TV dating show, got my brain working.

The premise of Too Hot to Handle is a group of extremely hot and horny 20-somethings all find themselves on a secluded resort just for them and they can’t do any kind of sexual act or even kiss. They must try to use as much self control as they can in order to walk away with the grand prize of $100,000.

The underlying point of the show is to force the contestants to make a connection that goes beyond just looks. They also go through a few self development workshops in order for them to grow as individuals.

It’s easy to sit back and judge these people for only being focused on looks and who they’re going to bed with. Some of them even admit to not being smart and brag about how many people they’ve slept with.

Trust me when I say, I was surprise to find myself going, “Awwwww” towards the end when the contestants made either a personal breakthrough or a genuine connection with someone else.

But I have to admit, I do admire them for owning their sexuality.

That’s something I’ve struggled with even before my first time. It was hard to think of myself as sexy. And as far as I was concerned, anything that went on down there wasn’t my business, it was God’s. (Something I picked up subconsciously from 9 years of Catholic school and eventually shed in my 20s).

On the show, one of the self development workshops the women participated in was called Yoni Puja. They were going to be looking at their own yoni (vagina in Sanskrit) with a mirror in order to develop a connection with it and appreciate it.

As proclaimed sexual women, I was surprised when many of those women said they hadn’t seen their own vagina before. Many of them realized how special their vagina was and would think twice in the future about who they would let “in” to it. They also learned that all vaginas look different and that’s normal.

Now, prior to seeing this show, I’ve taken a mirror to my own yoni a couple times to get to know it and take ownership of it. (Not from a Yoni Puja workshop but directed by Emily Nagoski, author of Come As You Are, which I highly recommend for all women and men.)

My takeaway from that was similar to the women of the show – my vagina is unique and that’s normal. This is my own to explore and find out what feels good. And yes, I am a sexual person and I’m allowed to be one.

It might seem like those women got more of a restricted lesson (don’t have sex with just anybody) and I received a more freeing lesson (you are sex).

But maybe we received the same lesson: women are amazing and we deserve to own who we are and what makes us who we are. Taking stock of our power is a way of self respect and we need that in order us to recognize we deserve respect from others.

So yeah, as you can see, I really liked the show and found myself rooting for the contestants and their growth. And for my fellow ladies out there, maybe try taking a mirror to your own yoni. Maybe it’ll make you feel some type of way, maybe it won’t. But we could all do with a good feeling of empowerment once in awhile.