I discovered this interesting comic-creating tool from Patricia Donaghy's JUICY blog. What I like about it is that you can create your own comic strips, share them or insert them in your blogs with just a few clicks and drag-n-drops! In short, you can within one online learning environment create, publish, share, discuss, participate in contests, and even feature in the ToonDoo Hall of Fame, if you are really good! Not bad! Here is one example (Use your mouse to see all! What?):
As Patricia's says, it is a “new way of expression for those who do not have the talent to draw.“ In addition, to creating simple ToonDoos consisting of 1 to 3 screens, you can also create ToonBooks by combining unlimited ToonDoos. I haven't tried the ToonBooks yet, but I found the ToonDoos experience quite positive. This Flash-based comic-creating tool is reasonably user-friendly, and it gives us access to a great library of cool graphics, and some dynamic features (e.g. drag-n-drop graphics).
Though, creating comics online really requires us to have a good Internet access to do things at the speed our creative mind often craves for. Also, I noticed limitations on resizing graphics (only four levels). However, this is also a strength, as it makes it easy for children to resize with four 'apparent' obvious levels of sizing (primary user target!). According to Rajendran (from jambav.com), for the professionals, who wouldn't mind some mouse-jugglery for an extra feature, they have provided a Ctrl-click feature that enables you to resize and rotate graphics smoothly any way you like. In addition, the Ctrl-click feature allows you to change emotions on people's faces, change body postures on character bodies, and much more. Also, ToonDoo provides features that other competitors lack (according to Rajendran), including these two gems:
- TraitR - Your own personal completely customizable character generator.
- ImagineR - Upload your own photographs, goofify them, embed them into cartoons, and even grab images from the web to make a cartoon of them.
Coming to think of it, if I had access to ToonDoo's graphics library in my PowerPoint authoring environment, it would simply be great! Yes, perhaps they should have a plug-in enabling us to create our comics offline in tools like PowerPoint, and then with one click ('Publish' button on the ToonDoos drop-down menu in PowerPoint) we can publish our comics online (or in PowerPoint!) without any hassle. Now that would be really cool! Although, ToonDoo has its minor limitations (at least the free version!), I certainly enjoyed playing around with it. To sum up, ToonDoo is a cool and useful tool that can enable anyone to add some customized cartoonish spice to their learning content :)
If ToonDoo is not what you are looking for, perhaps you should explore some other comic-creating tools. Patricia recommends three (3) other comic/cartoon-creating tools, which we can explore:
If you are planning to add some engaging cartoonish spice to your learning content, one of these four tools mentioned above might just be right for you. Or perhaps you still prefer PowerPoint :)