16 Aug Why I Dig Canva (and So Will You) Posted at 00:53h in Blog, Creative Tools, Digital by Danielle Spinks-Earl Share I cringed at first. I thought it was a gimmicky website that would replace elegant design work with awful DIY wallpaper and slowly wrest demand away from quality graphic designers. I wasn’t keen. So I ignored it. To be honest, it didn’t really grab my attention until veterans like Joan Stewart and Guy Kawasaki start promoting it. When those two get onto something, I listen. I tried it out. I liked it. Now I really dig Canva. Why? Dig, you say? Now you dig it? Yes. I can dig it. This is why. Not just because it’s from my nabe – Surry Hills (Sydney). With Canva, you jump right in and – without any design headaches – you can drag and drop text, images, backgrounds, shapes, and all sorts of great features. With templates for Twitter, Facebook covers, Facebook post updates, posters, presentations, postcards, flyers, business cards, book and ebook covers, and print and web resolutions, you’re all set to create unique and eye-catching graphics to show off your posts. Things I dig about Canva Affordable Stock My once-beloved iStockphoto I have been using since 2004. I started as a contributing photographer, as well as a purchaser for the myriad campaigns I needed to pull together every year. I used to be able to afford the credits and the range of prices was reasonable for my employer’s wallet. Fast forward and I am sorely disappointed that, with Getty, the most basic package is now $36 AU for just 3 credits. Yes, the Getty quality is great, but c’mon. This is where Canva steps up. It has over 1,000,000 images and the quality is… well… it’s okay. You can usually get what you’re after. And most times the image is only $1. That’s what I like – transparent, easy to remember. A credit package is ten bucks and that kept me going for some time. Ten bucks is not much to hand over and you can get ten images out for that. Infographic Elements Putting together graphs, pie charts, schematics and the like, well it’s expected these days. But it’s time-consuming. Canva can help, even just with some ideas. The range has been helpful to me in planning my graphics for magazines, publications and reports. They are crude and a little rudimentary, but it’s a good place to dig about and see what you can get. There’s also plenty of free elements in there, like maps of countries and pencil clip art, that kind of thing. Typefaces I adore typography and Canvas has a large selection of modern fonts to play with. There is also a ‘Design’ school tutorial section which shows people the basics of pairing fonts, developing colour palettes, and that kind of thing. Original Creations I dig Canva because it helps bloggers, web users, everyone who has any website material or social media accounts to maintain to do so without breaching copyright. Believe me, there are people so blissfully ignorant of copyright, you’d fall off your chair. You can use Canva as an option for people who are in the habit of taking images off Google images oblivious to the fact that, just because you can right-click > save something, doesn’t give you the license to do it. It’s nice to have that clarity and creativity. Integrity costs you nothing. Well, with Canva it costs very little anyway. Do you use Canva? What do you think? Danielle Spinks-Earl BA Comm. M Mktg. Freelance writer, designer, marketing communications manager.