What is Canva?

I must confess I am in love with Canva and been using it for a few months.  I started off using it on my laptop and then I discovered there is an app.  Now I can use it anywhere.

Canva helps you create visually effective images for a wide host of reasons.  I used it a lot to create my blog titles and images for tweets and Instagram.  I also have used it to create a party invitation for my son’s birthday party.  I discovered the site via Wattpad when looking for software to create a novel cover.

Here are some examples of what I have created:

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What is Create with Canva?

This company is currently offering a free beginners course for people that want to get better at using Canva.  They also have a resources page with useful information and recommendations for blog host sites and other courses you can pay for like how to earn from you blog with affiliate marketing.

Free Beginners Course

I found the course via Twitter and enrolled.  There are five lessons and each lesson is delivered daily to your inbox.  The lessons are bitesize YouTube videos and just 5 minutes long.  You can join their Facebook page to have access to the course in full right away.  Here is what I think:

Dashboard tour: 

This is sent out with the ‘welcome’ email and is an introduction to Canva.

Lesson One: Working with templates, text and color

This covers the basis of using the templates on Canva.  How to amend the template and colour theme.  How to edit the text, add more text and resize.  I thought I knew most of this simply from using the site but they did teach me a new trick – spacing!  Everything in this class used the free features in Canva.

Lesson Two: Working with images in Canva and uploading your own images

This was about using the images in Canva and how to add your own.  Again, I thought I had this sussed but they taught me some new tricks.  I make use of the free images in Canva (there is a vast collection), however, I didn’t know that some of the free images are cropped and you can change the cropped area and use some of the hidden parts of the picture!  There were other tricks they taught that I expect I’ll be making use of in the near future.

Lesson Three: Working with free photos, frames and grids

This lesson started by introducing collages – a feature I have never considered using (seriously missing out).  They taught us how to use different photo layouts from scratch and for Instagram.  Finished with how to use and edit backgrounds.

Lesson Four: Working with shapes, lines, illustrations and icons

This started off nice and simple with adding elements to your design.  I haven’t really used this part of Canva and through watching the lesson I saw how useful they can be.  Gillian also covered some useful time saving short cut keys and how to group objects.

Lesson Five: Getting organized in Canva, creating templates and batch producing designs

This was incredibly useful and I haven’t used any of the features covered.  I learnt how to create a brand theme in Canva (rather than saving notes on my phone), how to sort my files in folders on Canva and how to make a batch of designs.

Would I recommend the course?

Yes.  It starts of quite easy so it is suitable for absolute beginners. It also is likely to uncover a trick that you haven’t worked out on your own, enabling you to get even more out of Canva.

When I signed up, I was worried that it was going to be five lessons telling you why you need to buy the premium service but it didn’t. Every feature I was shown how to use was using the free features available to everyone.

I honestly don’t know how Canva do it. If you haven’t got an account on there you need to go create one.

Presenter – Gillian

The course is presented by a lady named Gillian who has a nice clear voice that is easy to understand and not irritating. You don’t see what she looks like as the video is showing what is happening on the screen.

Links

Canva:  https://www.canva.com/

Create with Canva:  http://www.createwithcanva.com/

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