Have you ever wondered how people create great images to use on Social Media and wished you could do the same? Always thought you would need to spend a fortune to get professionally designed images?
Well, welcome to Canva.
This is our favourite design software on many levels and the best part…..you can create fantastic designs absolutely free!
There are many great reasons for using Canva to create your graphic. Here are some of our favourites:
● Browser based on the web so no heavy downloads
● Available in the App Store so can be used on iPhones and IPads
● Free & Paid images on basic version or upgrade to Business version available
● Easy to use - no graphic design skills needed
● Drag and drop design
● Many templates to ensure correct sizing as well as option to customise the size
What can I use Canva for?
Canva has many uses. It is great for any Web or Print projects you may have:
● Social Media posts, Headers, Ads, Profile pictures,
● Blog graphics
● Business cards
● Album Covers
and many other projects limited only by your imagination.
How can I Create an amazing Social Media graphic?
1. Set up your Canva account
Once your account is setup you will be taken through a short demonstration to show you how simple Canva really is. The link to set up your account is https://www.canva.com/
2. Decide on your project
What would you like to achieve?
In this example we will create a Twitter cover picture.
3. Using different layouts - decide on the best one for your project
Do you want a single image or several images in sections? Do you have an idea of what you would like your finished graphic to look like?
Decide on this and then play around with Canvas' layouts to see what will look amazing.
4. Where do I find images to use without infringing on Copyright?
Canva provides you with many image options which are free to use without any Copyright concerns. However, if you can't find a suitable image there are many other places you can go to import one to use.
Top tip: Try to find the best quality image you can. By the time you have played around with the sizing you may find a poor image will become pixelated and blurred. A fantastic website we use regularly for high quality, copyright free images is Pixabay - www.pixabay.com.
A word of warning though, just be careful not to use the images on their top line as these are watermarked Shutterstock and will need to be purchased. Of course, the best place to get images without any Copyright concern is to use your own. These days most of us carry a smartphone with a camera so why not start photographing. Save any great images in a folder for later use.
5. How do I add an Image?
There are several ways to add your image to your graphic.
You can click on the ‘Elements’ option in the left hand bar and search through the options
You can use the ‘Search’ bar to see what options Canva has
You can upload your own image by clicking on the ‘Uploads’ option in the left hand bar and then clicking on the green ‘Upload your own images’ to search your computer for pictures
Canva stores your previously uploaded images in a library which you can access at any time to use over again
6. How do I put text on top of my Image?
Adding text to your Graphic can be very powerful and looks professional. A few things to think about when using text effectively would be:
● Font. Am I trying to look professional, quirky or different? Can the viewer read the text easily? You may know what is written but imagine reading it for the first time - is it easy to read? Cant find the approriate font you want in Canva? - no problem, just head over to Google Fonts and there are over 800 to chooses from!
● Size. Does the text stand out? Is it too small to read or too large and taking over the image! Does it have an impact without ruining the overall graphic?
● Colour. Does the colour of your text stand out against the background? Does it blend nicely while still creating the impact needed?
● Background. Does your text need a background behind it to make it stand out?
Add text by clicking on the text box in the left hand column. You can then add simple text by using the ‘Heading’ option or more advance graphics by scrolling down and choosing your layout. Again beware of any paid options...the free ones will say ‘Free’ and the ‘Paid’ ones will have a ’$’ sign at the bottom of the image.
Drag heading over onto image and amend the Font, Size, Colour, Boldness etc so your text stands out.
7. Name, Download and Save my Image
Now your graphic is complete the good thing is you won't lose it. Canva will store it safely for you to come back to at any time. However, you will probably have created this for a reason so it's time to download it for use. The first thing to do is to name your image. This not only makes it easier to find in your downloads but means the image will be named for future use. Click on the download option at the top right of your screen and choose your file format.
I hope you enjoyed this run through on Canva.
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If you would like to find out more about Creation Social Media please connect with us on:
Facebook - www.facebook.com/creationsocialmedia
Twitter - www.twitter.com/CreationSocialM
Website - www.creationsocialmedia.com
Email - firstname.lastname@example.org