Cloth is a popular graphic design platform that offers a simple user interface and a host of features. Whether it’s a poster, a social media post, or a YouTube thumbnail, you can design just about anything and everything with Canva. It has many handy tools which can make designing easy and convenient.
Before we dive into our list of helpful design tips on Canva, let’s take a look at how to get started with the platform.
Getting started with Canva
The best part about using Canva is that you don’t have to be a professional graphic designer to get started. You can start from scratch on Canva, or you can choose one of the thousands of templates offered by the platform and modify it to suit your needs. To get started, you will need to register or log into the platform using your email, Google or Facebook account.
After that, select one of the options under the Design anything title. Or, click Create a drawing in the upper right corner of the screen and select the format that best suits your design. From creating a logo to a complete presentation, several options are available to you.
After selecting an option, you are taken to a blank canvas where you can edit the template, add elements, change the background, and add text.
Now that you’re familiar with the interface, here are some tips to help you create stunning designs and get the most out of Canva.
1. Create layouts using grids
Using grids can be a great way to map different layouts in proportional sizes. Grids act as a frame in which you can place your images, graphics or colors.
You can find this feature in Elements on the left side of the screen. From there, scroll down to Grids, then click To see All to choose from a range of formats. You can also search for the term “grids” to save time.
Here is an example, where we used a 2×2 grid for an Instagram post. You can add graphics and change colors as shown below.
Once you are done with your design, you can remove the grid if you don’t plan to use it further.
2. Use frames to crop images into shapes
Similar to what grids offer, you can use frames to crop images into shapes. To get started, you can scroll to Frames, or search for “frames” in Elements. After that, select one of them according to your preference.
You can then upload a photo to Canva by clicking To download, or you can choose from one of the images available in the Pictures section. While upgrading to Canva Pro gives you access to more stock photos, there’s still plenty to choose from in the free version.
When you have your image, drag and drop it into the frame you selected. You can enlarge the frame or reposition it as you wish.
3. Organize and group items
There are times when you need to use a lot of elements in your design. So it becomes important to layer them to create a well-designed model. Fortunately, Canva lets you organize them with just a few clicks.
To do this, right click on a particular item and select Send back or Moving forward to layer it above or behind other elements.
Grouping is another way to organize items. After selecting the items you want to group together, select Group in the toolbar above the editor, or use the Ctrl + G (Cmd + G on Mac) keyboard shortcut.
By doing this, you will be able to modify, move or copy several items at the same time. Likewise, you can ungroup the elements once you are done with your design.
4. Lock the position of the elements
Another feature of Canva that is useful for dealing with many elements is the Lock tool. As the name suggests, it allows you to lock the position of elements on your design to avoid making unintentional changes.
To do this, select the item you want to lock and then click the button Lock in the upper right corner of the toolbar above the editor. You can also select multiple items to lock by holding Change on your keyboard, then pressing the Lock icon.
Likewise, you can click the icon again to unlock the selected items.
5. Define the transparency of the elements
You can enhance your design by adjusting the transparency of any element in Canva. This technique can help you achieve the desired opacity of an element and create an eye-catching design.
To do this, select the element and click on Transparency (the Checkerboard icon) in the toolbar. To increase opacity, drag the slider to the left and to decrease it, drag it to the right. You can try this feature on Backgrounds, Items, Text, Photos, and Videos.
6. Add a hyperlink
When creating a digital design in Canva, it can sometimes be useful to add hyperlinks to your design. By doing this, you can allow your audience to visit your website.
You can add clickable links to text, items, images, and videos. To insert a link, you must select the element you want to link and click on the button Hyperlink icon in the editor toolbar.
Then you can just enter your website URL and click Apply. To remove the link, you can follow the same process.
7. Animations, GIFs and videos
Using animations can make a digital design look attractive and engaging. Canva lets you animate just about anything, including text, graphics, photos, and videos.
For example, if you are creating an engaging Facebook post, select the item you want to animate and click Animate on the toolbar. Choose one of the animations that best suits your design.
You can also choose Page animations to liven up the rest of your design elements. When finished, click on the To play on the toolbar to see how it moves. When you are ready, you can download your cartoon in GIF or MP4 format.
8. Choose a trendy style
If you are unsure of how to choose the right combination of colors and fonts for your design, you can try one of Canva’s predefined styles. It offers trendy font combinations and color palettes to make your designs stand out.
To do this, go to the fashions in the left sidebar menu and select one of the styles you like.
You can select All to apply a combination of fonts and color palettes to your design, or you can try them out separately in Colors and Fonts.
9. Find and filter items
One of Canva’s best features is the ability to search and filter for items. In addition to items, you can also use this feature when searching for models, photos, etc.
To do this, type a keyword in the Elements tab and click the Filtered icon. There you can choose your preferred filter. You can filter your search by color, orientation, animation, etc. to achieve the desired results. When you are finished, click Apply filters.
10. Make a copy of your designs
Canva allows you to make a copy of your design and edit it while maintaining the original design.
To do this, go to the File menu and select Make a copy. The copied version of your design will open in a new tab and have “Copy of” appended to its file name. If you want, you can create multiple copies of your design using this method and rename them to keep track of them.
Make your designs stand out with Canva
With these handy tips, you can get the most out of designing on Canva. Your creativity and knowledge of the platform should help you work more efficiently, while improving your visuals.
Since Canva has so many features to offer, there are plenty of other ways to experiment with your designs and get the most out of your experience with this popular platform.
Like its desktop counterpart, the Canva mobile app offers powerful design tools. Try to create these designs on the go!
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