The Design Tool I Always Recommend to My Clients

I'm not a designer. I have some artistic ability in the vein of making wedding cakes and sometimes greeting cards but I've never really been one to draw or paint pictures. So, when it comes to needing graphics for social media, blog posts, clients or events I run - guess where I turn? To an amazing tool called Canva.

Canva is a free tool that lets you create all sorts of graphics, posters, images, invites, business cards.... anything! It's browser-based so it's as easy as visiting the website and signing in with your Facebook or Google account. Once there, you can select from lots of pre-formatted items (think Twitter Post, Etsy Cover Photo, YouTube Channel Art... all those things that need specific sizing!) or you can set the dimensions and create your own image.

Once you've set your canvas, you can choose from a ton of beautifully-created layouts. There are lots of free options but there are also many that you can pay a small fee to use.

Choose from existing layouts on the left, or just start fresh with text and other elements.

Choose from existing layouts on the left, or just start fresh with text and other elements.

Or you can start fresh by selecting a background and then add text and illustrations. There are lots of different fonts and you can easily resize your elements to work well together. There are guidelines that appear to help you centre each element, or to line them up with another nearby item.

You can upload images too and use those in the designs - so you can have the right branding on everything your business creates. Once you are done, you can download the image as a jpeg, png or pdf version and use it anywhere.

They have tons of tutorials to get you going and there's a work plan that gives you some additional features too. I can't really say enough great things about this tool - it opens up the options when you're a soloprenuer and you can't afford to hire a designer. Or it fills the gap when all you need to do is add your existing logo to an image for a quick Facebook post about an upcoming sale.

So it does not replace the talent a designer brings to the table but it gives you a choice of when to bring them into the picture. Maybe you'll even find one that is willing to set up some templates in your Canva account and then you can work from those. I use Canva in conjunction with paint.net to achieve the image creation and editing that I do on a day-to-day basis. 

I definitely recommend you give Canva a go.