Canva is a new online photo editor. Not only does it allow you to edit photos, you can also make graphics for just about any need you might possibly have. Canva is free, although there is a huge library of stock photos, textures, etc. that cost $1 each to use.
- Free (extra graphics are $1/each)
- Filters are awesome and possibilities are unlimited
- Easier than Photoshop
- Very engaged with users; great tutorials for newbs
- No grids, rulers, or other alignment tools
- Cumbersome interface; some elements hard to find
- Can’t use your own fonts
- Seems buggy
Canva allows you to choose from a few zillion different sized templates (or enter your own dimensions), so you’re covered whether you’re making a graphic for your blog or a flier for Jackie Boy’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles themed birthday party. They make it easy to layer text, backgrounds, and photos to make a complete design. One big negative, from my perspective, is the font library. Although the font choices are relatively good, you can’t use any of the fonts that you might have downloaded and put on your computer (like the fabulous script fonts you immediately downloaded after you read this post, amirite?). I also have to say the service seems to be a bit buggy (although, to be fair, they are still technically in beta). I started writing this blog post a few days ago but had to quit because the website elements weren’t loading properly for me.
Now the good: for “casual” graphic-makers, this does the trick beautifully. The photo filters, albeit difficult to locate if you don’t know where to look, are great. Canva gives you several “premade” filters to use, or you can create your own simply by sliding around the settings. This is obviously a lot simpler to use than Photoshop or Photoshop Elements, however, don’t expect to be a “Canva-pro” in a matter of minutes.
The Verdict: Although I found it a bit cumbersome to use and will never part ways with Photoshop, Canva is a pretty bomb tool for those who aren’t interested in investing time or money in Photoshop or another paid graphics program. Check out the video below for a walk-through!