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It began so innocently. I happened to read a Facebook friendās status update wherein she made the comment, āWhatās with all of this Bitstrips stuff? It isnāt even funny.ā Since Iām one of those āIāll be the judge of thatā sorts of people, I was intrigued.
I found myself thinking, “Exactly what is a Bitstrip and why isnāt it funny? Is it some sort of food? Is it what you use when you have something small and needed to repair it? Was my life complete without knowing what I was missing?” There should have been a warning sign saying āTurn Back Now!ā
I sort of pondered my friendās put-down, because I generally tend to agree with her comments and assessments. However, the word “funny” just kept percolating. I managed to get busy with work and life in general, so Bitstrips was definitely not at the top of my to-do list. And then, my sister Lisa Bitstipped me. Yes, you heard me right. My very own beloved sister.
Now, I was hooked. Iāll confess, Iāve always wished my life was as carefree and simple as a cartoon ā and voila ā here was my chance. In the blink of an eye, I was on my iPad, creating my own fantasy world. Sure, Lisa had captured the essence of āme,ā but I wanted to do some fine-tuning. I also wanted the opportunity to see if Bitstrips could actually be funny. While I wasnāt rolling on the floor watching Jeanetta and myself dressed as lumberjacks, I did see the potential for humor. And, the cartoon brought back some pretty silly memories from when Jenny and I lived together in LA many years ago, and managed to get lost on our commute to work more times than either of us would care to admit.
What I discovered is a place where you are somewhat limited because the creative folks at Bitstrips only put up a handful of cartoon possibilities each day, but in their defense, there is quite an archive. Since they provide the ability to capture your Facebook friends, you can include their image in your masterpiece. Even using that word in jest makes me glad that DaVinci, Rembrandt, Picasso, etc., did not have computer access back in the day, because Iām convinced our museums would be lacking some real masterpieces!
But back to, itās all about me. In no time flat I was a Bitstrips impresario. I went into the program and changed my eye color, my lips, even my glasses so they felt a bit more authentic (Iām going to have to talk to my sister about why she doesnāt know what color my eyes are ā but Iāll save that for a later date). I think one of the greatest parts about being able to create your cartoon self is being able to make that self so much more attractive (and ageless) than your real self. My Bitstrips self looks perkier than my real self has been in years. And my Bitstrips self is constantly on some adventure (okay, my real self is pretty much constantly on some adventure too, just not necessarily an adventure of my choosing)!
As with most things in my life, I found it impossible to practice moderation. Before long, I was Bitstripping every Tom, Dick and Mary Iāve ever known. Some of them already had Bitstrips characters they had created, but many did not, which made it fun to fashion a cartoon based on the features I find most compelling.
I had them doing any number of funny things and saying whatever I thought made the scene even more hilarious. Since I canāt draw anything but stick figures, this was also a great way for me to feel what it must be like to be talented when it comes to drawing or painting. Bitstrips allows me to change facial expressions and add quips, so even if a cartoon has a theme, Iām able to play with it a bit.
Iāve turned family members into babies. Created scenes where co-workers are zombies, and even expressed real feelings about someone or something in a way that brought just a bit of levity and joy to the situation.
Yes, I may be paying way too much attention to this novel app. Granted, nothing Iāve created has been too funny. But, Iām willing to bet that if your curiosity leads you to this app, there will be a cartoon you in no time too!
Until then, I just want to be sure to wish everyone a great holiday season, and to let you know just how thankful I am for all of you. Now, if I can just get my hairstylist to figure out how to replicate this haircut, Iām all set for my companyās Christmas party.