Running a blog is challenging and building a strong social media presence can be very daunting. In this modern “Visual” era of information overload, people are in need of graphics in order to consume data easier and faster. They need to be informed but entertained at the same time. There are online design tools you can use to create beautiful images and banners for all your campaigns.
Melanie Perkins partnered with Cliff Obrecht to launch Fusion Books, an online tool to help teachers and students create their own yearbooks. When they realized that they could use their technology broadly decided to get in business with a new co-founder Cameron Adams. So this is how Canva was born.
Their main slogan…“Empowering the world to design”.. is absolutely true and I will explain why while uncovering the tool features.
How it Works
Before we get to the features let’s see how this works. When you enter their homepage there is an option to create a design choosing from an extended list and categories (when you hover your mouse over these categories the dimensions are displayed on the bottom of every image)…A new tab will be opened to access the application. Inside every category there are some ready-made images.
There is a variety of topics to choose and the quality is just awesome to ensure satisfaction even for the most demanding individual. Most of these images are Free but there are some designs you will need to pay in order to use them. Don’t worry, the usual price is set to $1.
Additionally, you can import images that you own or royalty-free images you downloaded on the web using any of the photo stock sites.
There is a search function to crawl over their database quickly and when you do that some sub-categories are opened to help you with the process. You can find
Grids, frames, shapes, lines, illustrations, icons, photos, charts and more…
The layout tab is the one containing the pre maid images for the category you use.
The text is for adding letters but in a creative way. This feature is what sets Canva apart from other applications as the pre-made texts come as patterns with shapes (like ribbons, triangles, circles) and on different sizes. If you don’t like any of these ready styles you can create anything on your own.
A huge variety of ready images to choose from.
This is where you upload your own images.
At the end of every project there are some options.You can download , share or make the project public.All the designs you will be creating are automatically being saved to the Canva website and whenever you revisit the tool , these projects are waiting for you.
Enough With the Words, We Need Some “Visual” Action
Social Media Banners & Headers
Twitter Post (1024 x 512 px) – Social media, Pinterest graphic, Instagram post, Facebook post, Tumblr graphic, Facebook app. I will proceed with the Twitter post as an example.
US letter (8.5 x 11 in) – Presentation – A4 – Letterhead – Magazine – Resume.I will create a a Resume (816 x 1056 px)
Blogging & E-books
E-book – desktop wallpaper – Kindle cover – Blog title – Blog graphic – Album cover – Infographic. I want the Blog title (560 x 315 px).
Real estate flyer – Poster – Foor & drink menu – Business Card – Flyer – Gift Certificate…The business card is calling me (8.5 x 5 cm)
Social Media & Email Headers
Facebook event cover – YouTube thumbnail – Tumblr Banner – YouTube channel art – Twitter Header – Google+ photo, Facebook cover – Email header – Etsy Banner…I think the YouTube Thumbnail (1280 x 720 px) is appealing.
Postcard – Wedding invitation – Invitation portrait – Card – Photo collage. I choose the latter (25 x 20 cm).
Facebook ad – Wide skyscraper – Medium rectangle – Leaderboard – Large rectangle…I will go with my usual for social media banners, the large rectangle (336 x 280 px).
The Design Stream
On the homepage, there is a feature called design stream where you can get inspiration by viewing other people’s creations with Canva…An entertaining process that can give you a ton of ideas
What Else is in Canva? – Design School
A lot more, Canva is not a design application only.
The Blog section
…inside the Canva design school is a goldmine of inspiration and knowledge. Topics like
- Digital Marketing tools to try
- How to Stay Current on Social Media Marketing
- How to design your own book cover
- How to create custom thumbnails for your videos using Canva
- Canva makes you a graphic designer in no time
will expand your skills and boost your creativity
You can even browse by category
- Flyer design
- Email design
- Designer trends
- Social Media Marketing
- Design Resources
and many many more…
Design Essentials – Tutorials
You can take lessons on design with their tutorial series, it is absolutely free.
- Beginners challenge
- Essential Canva tools
- Less is more
- Choosing the right font
- Font pairing basics
- Tips for titles
- Colour relationships
- Enhancing images
- Photo filters
are some of their topics. Right now there are 30 learning parts, but there are new courses coming up.
It can be used for live instruction and through their topics you can access knowledge that ranges from the fundamentals of graphic or web design to practical everyday business projects.
The Lesson Plans are resources for teachers looking to inspire their students to think and express themselves creatively through visual design
- Visual Poetry
- Presidential Report Card
- Market a product
- Extreme graph makeover
- Time travel adventure
- Math vocabulary wizard
- Food chain – make connections
- Comic book creation
- Character analysis – creating a web
- All about a poster
- Historical infographic
- Author innovation through social media
- Social change through persuasion
- Mathematical modeling with Candy
- Discovering the periodic table
- Puzzle it out
- Put your stamp on history
- Fantastic fables
William Ferriter, Vicki Davis, Terri Eichholz, Steven Anderson, Paul Hamilton, Monica Burns and John Spencer are among the authors of this sub-department.
Photographers & Illustrators
Canva can help professionals and passionate artists to make money and reach a wider audience. The application has been used by more than 1 million people. Users are creating 460K designs every week.
You can contribute your high-quality images, illustrations, and vectors to Canva. All the images are licensed under a $1 one time use license. You earn 35% royalty every time someone uses them.
How This Works
You read the contributor’s guide, submit your online portfolio, you contribute via FTP using your Canva account.
A new slogan appears …“Join us as we Transform the World of Design”…There is a working space if you are interested. The office has been designed with workspaces for every mood with a full-service bar where at 1 pm an amazing chef spoils the personnel with his “Delicious” creations.
Current Positions – Sydney
- Java engineer
- Front end engineer
- Fullstack engineer
- UI / UX designer
- Digital designer
Current Positions – Manila
- Customer Happiness in English
- Customer happiness in Spanish
- Content Marketing specialist
There is a registration form you can complete. I believe they are expanding really fast as a company, I can congratulate them and I hope they succeed in their goals.
This feature is amazing and lets your visitors create images with Canva on your website. When they finish the image will be stored on your site, on the page they created the design.
Unfortunately, there is a high volume of requests for API keys so at this time the function is unavailable.
You can get this app here and create designs on your favorite device.
- Getting started
- Using Canva
- Account settings
- Billing & payments
- Sharing & publishing
- Private, security and policy
- Contributors and partners
- Canva for work
This section brings interesting topics related to the industry concerning the company, the founders’ actions or progress.
A very interesting topic related to the Aussie start-up, the brainchild of Melanie Perkins, Cliff Orbecht and Cameron Adams can be found here. Two famous actors, Owen Wilson, and Woody Harrelson invested in Canva.
Canva for Work
This department aims to simplify the process of creating online designs, beautiful on-brand marketing materials, presentations and social media graphics for every organization.
It is ideal for companies, designing teams or individuals that need a more flexible way to create their artwork faster using extended features with a huge variety of graphics and images.
There are thousands of layouts (documents and designs) to choose while the normal Canva application has way less material. You can create and save templates, logos, fonts and share them with your Team Stream and share photo folders. A ready-made designing environment.
The professional application ensures consistency across your documents.
Among their clients, you can find Huffington Post, Hub Spot or Yelp and even social media teams like Donna Moritz’s.
There is an introductory special that gives you Free access for 30 days.
- It costs $9.95 per month for an annual membership.
- or $12.95 per month on a monthly basis contract.
Resume – Final Take.
Canva is a fast tool, easy to use, accurate and the variety of images and texts makes it a precious ally on my everyday endeavors. I create banners, headers, images for social media and that application saves me a lot of time. There are more apps that I use for my graphics, one of them is the Online Logo Maker that I analyzed in a previous post
Of course, the Logo maker can be used with Canva as both applications can import data.
Other Free Design Tools
- Fotojet – Create Beautiful Collages
- E-book cover creator
- Picture Quote Maker
- Online Logo Maker
I hope you enjoyed another article , here on Web Market Support. I am waiting for your comments and thoughts. Are you using Canva and want to share your experience? Till next time.