Avatar The Last Airbender is an American show as it is released by Nickelodeon but maintains a Japanese style of animation. The plot of Avatar is a typical fantasy action plot, one involving super powers and one main character that holds the secrets to having almost god-like power but needs to go through a journey to unlock them.
This show has a very powerful cast of artists. This includes Bryan Konietzko, a 29 year old powerhouse of creativity through artistic design. He was featured along with Michael DiMartino in an Animation Insider interview in 2005. He first worked for the Film Roman organization as a character designer where he got into the grove of animation productions and how they are run. From there he moved on to become a character designer for more influential shows. This includes Family Guy and King of the Hill which helped him to coordinate his style. Konietzko also has experience story boarding with the series Invader Zim and has studied at animation schools. For Avatar, he is the director of art and the character designer; also he is the co executive producer.
Michael DiMartino is another one of the influential members of the Avatar creators and designers. He’s 31, and has used many of those years learning about animation production (he spent 12 working at Film Roman). He is the other co executive producer and the story editor for Avatar. He has worked with Konietzko on shows like King of the Hill and Family Guy as the director. He has also created his own animation called, Atomic Love; and it has featured in many film festivals.
In the interview with Animator Insider, both men discussed what went into Avatar The Last Airbender. Before even starting to work on Avatar, the team knew that they wanted it to be Asian based rather than European based and they wanted to give it some elements of Asian mythology. They started out by creating the mythology for this show, such as how things worked by using their supernatural powers. They make it clear that it isn’t called “magic” in the show, but it is along those lines as they are using elements and supernatural powers. One of the most fascinating parts of the creating of the show is that different types of martial arts are used. There are four different elemental powers in the show: water, fire, earth, and wind; all of them have their own distinctive fighting styles.