Making Comic Characters (avbs.) 

Here are some help ideas in making your own characters to use in 
Microsoft chat using color characters.

Using Editor
First Download and install the character editor.
I have included the link to download the editor ... ... 
The following picture shows you what the editor looks like.

 OKAY, got the editor downloaded and installed... 
Open the Character Editor,                                                                         Windows XP Users!!
Click on file, select new and fill in all the spaces.                                           Mermaid has a HELP
I leave as 256 colors, standard sizing.                                                           Page for you!
Set your transparent color. (I like blue) Click finish. 
Fill out info in editor. The editor will open, ready for your first pose. 

Go find pictures of what you want to make into an avb. 
(Character files are called avb.s) 
You can find pictures on the web or scan them yourself or 
even draw them if you prefer. 
I make a folder on desktop to hold my collection of pic.s
(can always delete later) You can choose which photo to 
use and take to photo program like Adobe, Paint Shop, Irfanview 
or what ever program you prefer to do some of the cropping 
and editing there...then save as bmp. or a jpg.) and import that 
picture into the character editor OR copy and paste it there.  
Gifs will not import but can be copied and pasted and or 
converted into a jpg. 


Choose file , import and bring in your first picture to edit (or paste it). 
If you have a graphics program like paint shop pro you can open the pic 
there to edit then copy and go to editor and paste it in. You may get 
a resize window, just resize it to fit and click ok. 
Start your avb. making it in the editor, the files will be called avs
On first pose import the pic you want to start with, Just choose 
neutral emotion at first unless you already know which emotion you want, 
you can change later. Put the crosshair in middle of face at this point. 
Work on this first pic a while and then close it. It will ask you to 
save changes to avs

Say Yes and save in Microsoft Chat Character Editor. 
(save as microsoft chat script file (avs)
You will find this file in C: Program files, microsoft chat character editor)
Then....You can add another pic now or later...I like to add some now. 
Be sure to save often while your working. Just go to file and click SAVE
(That saves a lot of grief if you freeze or lock up). To add the next picture 
or pose choose character, add pose, then file/import or edit/paste. 
Do some, this time it will ask you if you want to save changes, 
say Yes. You will not have to find the file to save in this time and 
when you open again you will have those two poses etc. 

Begin editing your pose 

Choose the upside-down pencil=eraser  and the magnifying glass!!!   
This is how you clean around the picture leaving only the neutral 
color as background. Then when character is made and used in chat 
it only shows the little mousie or whatever you created.


Emotions and Poses



After you have added all the different poses go back and 
decide which one is laugh and sad and angry etc. or neutral. 
You will want some or all of them in neutral. As you are working 
on your avs. you can preview what it looks like by going to view, 
preview character. This gives you an idea of how it will look in 
chat and shows if you are cleaning around the pic. Clean them up....
Use the eraser upside pencil shown on the tools bar. 
I like to use the setting of#8 in cleaning with the 
magnifying glass icon. Always face characters to the right
Do this by choosing edit, select all, you will see some switch boxes 
for turning right to left or up to down. Make sure the crosshair  
is in middle of face or directly underneath the picture. This positions 
the cartoon word bubble above character. You must create a 
Character icon. Do this by clicking on character icon and importing a pic. 
Any pose you choose. Resize window will open to guide you in shrinking 
it down. If you edit your own pic in a photo proggie..
about 40x 40 pixels is right for the icon.

One pose (picture) can have several emotions! Don't Over Do though. 

My advice is to leave a neutral in each pose unless you only want 
it seen once. (EXAMPLE): Wave, Laugh-lol, 
Point to other, etc.= leave out the neutral.
'NEUTRAL' likes to get in there and rock and roll!!!

By removing neutral in this pose, it shows up for shouting and !!! only. 
If  I put the neutral back in also then it would show repeatedly as poses cycle.

I always make a  test avb-AVB is the file after you created your character. 
The avb is what auto downloads to others and works in the chat rooms. 
If any poses are to low on the screen I add a little pencil dot under 
the character pose. Example:

The test avb lets me see how it looks and if its cleaned and 
positioned the way I want.

When I am satisfied with my results I delete those test files 
but never the avs files. 
Then I add the url and create the final avb for posting on the internet.


If you are posting yourself there is a procedure to follow. 
If you are having someone else post for you  
Send only the .AVS file to them.

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