The first avatar creation tool that I used was Bitmoji. I was a bit familiar with this since I've seen my sister and mom both use it in our family group chat. I thought it was stupid.
And now I love it.
I've been responding to texts and messages primarily with Bitmoji these days. My family and my friends seem to enjoy it as well. The amount of different Bitmoji stickers is huge and really fits with how I communicate to my family and close friends. Below is a timelapse of the actual creation of the avatar.
My girlfriend helped me in the process of making the avatar. She says that my Bitmoji really captures the essence of Bryan. I think it's primarily due to the glasses and the body type I chose. The glasses look exactly like the ones I'm wearing now. I also gained a bunch of weight over the summer. You can tell in the video that I was wavering between choosing the fit body versus the chubby one. I ultimately decided on the chubby Bryan, not only because I felt that it showed my current state more accurately but because it also represents a big part of who I am: a happy guy who eats a lot of food.
The second avatar creation tool that I used is called Line Play. It is a game where you can purchase clothes and accessories for your avatar. It also includes a house that can be decorated with furniture and lots of other stuff. The first character creation screen was a gender, I saw that there was a third choice of Animal. I chose this option.
It was interesting to go through all the options of creating an animal version of Bryan. I tried to choose parts from different animals to represent different aspects of myself: a bear face because I'm a big guy and I eat and sleep a lot and dog ears because I'm well behaved yet playful. And of course I needed glasses. I found that being able to choose these features that are from all these different types of animals gave me more freedom to express attributes of myself that I would not be able to if they were human features.
I found that when creating avatars, it's good to exaggerate both physical and non-physical features. It's a bit like a cartoonist emphasizing your slightly larger front teeth by turning you into a rabbit. By using a more hyperbolic representation of one's self, character traits and personalities are more easily definable in an otherwise static avatar.