Author Archives: BA

Bitstrips for Schools wins Best in E-Learning @The Digi Awards!

We’re proud to announce that the Digi Awards (formerly known as the Canada New Media Awards) has named Bitstrips for Schools Best in E-Learning!

We’re excited and honoured to have received this prestigious award, and want to thank all the teachers and students out there for helping to make the site what it is!

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Announcing the Kinect Comic Challenge!

We’re excited to introduce a new contest on Bitstrips – the Kinect Comic Challenge!  Winning free video games by making comics – does life get any better?

In case you’ve been living under a rock, Kinect for Xbox 360 is a revolutionary new system in which YOU are the controller.  Your body movements are captured by a hi-tech sensor and translated into moves in the game!  So, we want you to explore the possibilities of this wild concept than by inventing your own crazy games and illustrating them as comics.  You can make as many entries as you like – the only limit is your imagination.

The winning comics will be selected by our panel of expert judges – these guys write about games and gadgets on some of the biggest blogs on the web: Jason Chen from Gizmodo, Ben Kuchera from Ars Technica, and Brian Crecente from Kotaku.  We couldn’t ask for a more qualified panel, so we’re thrilled to have them all on board!

So what are you waiting for – go to the contest page, and get your game on!

Fresh front page fun – build your own themes, news and challenges!

Ever since we launched the ‘Theme of the Day’ section over a year ago, Bitstrippers have been getting together to make great comics on common topics.  Themes and challenges are a great way to find undiscovered talent and share jokes with new friends.  So – we want more!

Which is why we’ve updated the Community Comics section on the front page, to enable anyone to create their own Theme of the Day, Remix Challenge, etc.  We’ve also added a new section – ‘In the News‘ – which is your chance to show your unique take on the top story of the day.

It’s easy to create a theme, news topic or challenge – just go to the latest theme page (or challenge, etc), and at the top you’ll see a ‘make a theme’ button.  Click that to open up the Blurb Builder and create your theme blurb.  If it’s well-designed, readable, and hasn’t been done before, we’ll add it to the list.

We’re looking forward to seeing your submissions for themes, news and challenges – so go make some!

New Feature: Flexible Characters!

The original Bitstrips Character Engine featured a combination of gestures, stances and actions which combined together added up to 210 possible poses (multiplied by the 5 character rotations, that’s 1050 different views of any character!).  But, after 2 years and 2 million Bitstrips, we’d understand if you prolific Bitstrippers might start to feel a bit constrained by this finite set of poses.

Which is why we’re excited to announce the advent of the Bitstrips Character Engine V2 – which has magically turned every character into a flexible puppet that can be manipulated into any pose imaginable.  Welcome to infinite posing.

To manually pose a character, just double-click on it – the yellow highlight around the character and faded background lets you know you’re in ‘Pose Mode’, where you can click on any body part and move it independently. You can also stack arms above or below the body or head, to fine-tune your pose – start by clicking the arm you want to move, and then use the ‘Move Behind’ or ‘Move In-Front’ buttons on the lower toolbar.

When you’re finished posing, double-click anywhere else in the panel to exit Pose Mode.  You can still use any of the pre-set poses from the character control panel at any time, for fast and easy posing.

We’ve already seen some amazing results from pose-happy Bitstrippers – like these:

‘Body Language – Without Words’ by OtterDisaster

‘Kung Fu’ by Xinpheld

‘Dance Craze’ by BoomMike

So, if you haven’t already – open up the comic builder and get posin’!

Bitstrips for Schools!

We’re very pleased to announce our new educational site, Bitstrips for Schools!

Soon after we launched Bitstrips.com, we found that teachers everywhere were using Bitstrips as a teaching tool, engaging their students with the exciting power of comic creation.  So, we decided to build a new version of Bitstrips, tailored specifically for teachers.  Bitstrips for Schools has all the awesome tools from Bitstrips, transplanted into a safe and secure environment, with additional administrative features that put the teacher in control.  Teachers can create a virtual classroom, where their students can become cartoon characters and then complete activities by making comics.  It’s an amazing way to promote literacy while having fun.

And, to start things off with a bang, we’ve licensed the service to the Ministry of Education for our home province of Ontario.  This means that all 5000 publicly funded schools now have access to Bitstrips – that’s over 2,000,000 students!  We can’t wait to see what they come up with.

So, go check out Bitstrips for Schools – learning with comics has never been so much fun!

New Merch and Shop Now open!

Today the rest of our custom products are available, courtesy of Kodak.  Coffee mugs, coasters, playing cards, and photo-quality prints can now be made from any Bitstrip.  To create your own product, just use the same ‘merch’ button that you’d use to make a shirt, but select a different product when the product list opens.

Antother new feature today – our main shop is now open!  Inside you’ll find unique Bitstrips gear, plus special series of products created by some top Bitstrippers.  We’ll be adding more products and more Bitstrippers to the shop as time goes on.   Happy shopping!

Custom Merchandise is here!

We’ve just launched a great new feature on Bitstrips – now you can turn any shared comic or character into a high-resolution, high-quality, one-of-a-kind product!  We’re starting with custom clothes provided by Spreadshirt – try clicking the ‘merch’ button on any shared comic or character page, and you’ll discover their nifty shirt designer.  Choose your style, color, size, and even customize the layout of your shirt to create a unique gift – for yourself or for friends and family.  These shirts are very reasonably priced, great quality, and will be delivered to your door within a matter of days.

Of special note is the character shirt option – click the merch button on a character profile page, and you’ll be taken to a special builder, where you can pose your character and add a word balloon – outside the confines of the comic strip!  This makes for a great shirt design starring your favorite characters, or even your avatar!

And that’s just the beginning… very soon we’ll expand the service by including some great customizable products from Kodak – coffee mugs, coasters, playing cards and photo-prints.  The possibilities are endless… and just in time for the holidays!

Just think – you can save yourself the hassle of holiday shopping while supporting your favorite website by creating custom gifts for your whole family right here on Bitstrips!