I’m neither a graphic designer nor an artist, and to be completely honest, I can’t even draw a circle that comes close to round. I tried my hand at Adobe Photoshop a couple of times, but the platform was honestly frightening – faced with dozens of buttons, panels, settings, and tools to choose from. On the other hand, other platforms didn’t offer the same imaginative freedom that was available with Photoshop, or charged high prices for less than what Photoshop would ever have to offer. Which is why I’m obsessed with Canva.
There are a lot of reasons why Canva is now my go-to platform for use when creating content, but here are just four of them:
1. No experience? No problem!
The true beauty of Canva is that it empowers everyone to be a designer. The onboarding user experience was intuitive and in touch with non-designers like myself. As I said, I don’t have much experience in graphic design or photo editing, and Photoshop always seemed too confusing to me, but Canva’s easy-to-use platform allowed me to hit the ground running. On Canva, you can create a completely new project from scratch, or you can choose from one of a million different templates to start your project.
2. Everything you need is right there
Whatever it is you’re looking to design, I can ensure that Canva probably has a template. In fact, I designed the resume I used to get this very job with the Impact Signal team on Canva. My user journey has come full circle! Now I use Canva to create presentations, video campaigns, and creatives for ads. Canva is great for me in my jobs as I can upload a brand kit full of specific logos, fonts, and headers, and have them there to use with a quick drag-and-drop motion. Not only that, but much like Google Drive, you can access your Canva designs from any device connected to the Internet, allowing you to design on the go if need be.
On my own time, I’ve even created some birthday cards for my friends. Canva allows you to personalise every single one of their templates to add your own spin on it, while not making it too much extra work. From stock imagery to royalty-free music, literally everything you might need is on Canva already or can easily be uploaded. On Canva, you can make your dreams come to life in a matter of mere seconds.
3. It’s essentially free!
As a student, I don’t have a lot of extra money laying around, so being able to create beautiful and personalised designs for free is a huge plus. Getting an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription for Photoshop could cost you upwards of $28 per month, but with a basic Canva free plan, I can get started with lots of design templates to build from. With an upgrade to Canva Premium, there is even more content, including photos and templates, additional editing tools, and more cloud storage. Still, having a free platform for anyone to use furthers accessibility and inclusion in the user experience world, which is a vital cornerstone in our day and age.
4. Most importantly, it’s user friendly
When I log onto the Canva home page, I’m greeted with bright colours and fun designs to choose from and a great starting point asking “What will you design?” When I launch Adobe Photoshop, I’m quickly overwhelmed by loads of icons on panels and sidebars. While Adobe Photoshop is great for the number of tools it offers, I’m just not in the market to use all of them and it adds a further layer of training to use.
Canva knows their audience; they know that not everyone was built with a knack for graphic design, but Canva still gives us all the chance to be designers. Even my best friend, who is notoriously confused when it comes to technology, uses Canva for all her work. The simplicity of Canva is what keeps users coming back every time. Canva’s choice of words is familiar to those who aren’t well versed in photography or editing, and the simplicity of the tools and content available create a design platform for one and for all. Not only that, but should you choose to want to learn more about or simply brush up on editing and graphic design, Canva offers free courses on that too – they even offer courses on everything from making Zoom backgrounds to marketing!
At the end of the day, Canva may not be for you if you’re a professional photographer, but if you have little to no experience but do have some time to experiment with templates, Canva is perfect for you. I’m not sponsored by Canva, but I love their platform and how their user design and experience keep me coming back over and over again. I have never thought once about looking for another platform to use after finding Canva, which should be a top priority for any business nowadays.