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What is Canva and why it’s one of the coolest graphic design tools EVER!


Update: this post was written around 2016/17. Much has changed on Canva since then, and I plan to write about it soon. So many cool, useful changes! I still love Canva and use it more than ever now. But this is just.a heads up if you’ve arrived here in 2020 that the information below might be outdated 😘

Hey guys, how are you doing?

As always, I will start the post by going straight to the point, for those who want a simple answer!

Canva is a very popular website and app that offers resources to create graphic and digital design pieces such as social media posts, flyers, business cards, invitations and more. It has a VERY easy and pleasant interface, useful tools for the development of elaborate or simple layouts, and templates (models) of very beautiful graphic pieces in the most used formats in everyday life.

Canva is free, but it has a paid version (Canva for Work) that can be very worthwhile in some cases. It can be accessed from both your computer or your phone, although, depending on the need, it is much better to use it on the computer.

I admit that when I first heard about Canva, I was afraid, thinking that the design profession would end now that such a tool was offered so easy to use, and with templates of such good taste. But the truth is that the designer’s vision remains the great differentiator. Nowadays it is a great ally in my work! 💖💫

Now let’s elaborate on the subject !

Is Canva a replacement for Photoshop? Which one is better?

Yes, Canva replaces Photoshop in creating everyday designs. It has features that are good enough to create countless types of layouts without having to learn PS. In addition, Canva is highly recommended for entrepreneurs, bloggers, freelancers and amateurs who want a practical and simple alternative to develop graphic arts in good taste. It’s easy to start and finish a beautiful design in Canva with a few clicks.

This does NOT in any way mean that Photoshop loses its value. Photoshop is still the best graphics editing software out there, it has fantastic tools that are much, much more advanced than Canva and achieves unparalleled results. It’s not that with Photoshop you can do the same things you do on Canva, only better. Photoshop actually has way more advanced options 🤩💫

It is not possible to register any design created in Canva, for example, something inconceivable for professional creations for major brands or projects. In Canva, you can’t edit images (just some very basic controls), nor create gifs among the million possibilities Photoshop offers. For a professional graphic designer in the 2020s, mastering Photoshop is still essential, and knowing how to work with Canva alone is not enough to have a competitive advantage in the profession.

I don’t even think that Canva’s intention is to replace PS entirely. It is just a simplified alternative, specifically focused on making layouts, specially for business owners who are not full time designers.

To sum up, each one is better in one sense, and knowing how to handle both with ease is ideal for any designer.

How to use Canva?

The interface is all intuitive, like almost everything these days. Create an account, select the type of design you want, choose a template and edit the content with your texts, images, graphic elements, etc. On the left side, the site offers several options of resources to use. Some are free, others paid.

My tip for those who don’t want to pay for premium images is to search for images on google and upload them to your account, when Canva doesn’t offer the option you want for free.

Is it worth it having a premium Canva account (Canva for Work)?

I hate to give this vague answer, but each case is different. Before hiring my professional plan, I read many posts and professional designer reviews. I confess that opinions were divided. About half of them love Canva for Work and highly recommend it. Another half say they have not seen so much advantage.

I think it’s worth it. For entrepreneurs, bloggers etc who, as I mentioned above, can have Canva as their main ally in marketing and design, I would super bet on the premium option for sure.

Guys, I really hope this was helpful somehow! 🥰💖✨

Don’t even think twice before creating your account to start making awesome designs on Canva.



Lu Amaral

Aesthete: One having or affecting sensitivity to the beautiful especially in art - That's me! 💕 Graphic, digital and web design are my livelihood and my favorite hobby. That's how lucky I am.

Quick question: What's your favourite aesthetic?
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