image created in Canva

How to Create Stunning Images, even if you Can’t Draw a Straight Line

It’s hard work to create images to go with your blog posts and social media, especially if you’re not an artist or a designer.

Unfortunately, it’s something you need to do.

Study after study shows that articles and posts with images, and social media posts with images, get shared exponentially more than posts without images.

So what’s a non-designer to do? How do you come up with images for your:

  • Articles
  • Blog posts
  • Facebook
  • Google Plus
  • Pinterest
  • Twitter
  • and all those other social media platforms

To Create Images, Here are your Choices

  1. Hire an artist, graphic designer or photographer — not a practical solution for most of us
  2. Buy stock images for a site like iStock
  3. Spend time combing through sites like Flickr or Pixabay for royalty-free images that carry licenses that allow you to use them
  4. Create your own

Of those choices, the last one has recently become much more practical and doable for the non-artistically gifted (which includes me). That’s because of a new web service called Canva.

What is Canva?

Canva is an online service that provides design tools for nondesigners. They make it amazingly simple to create images — all sorts of images — already sized properly for different uses.

Want to change your Facebook cover image? They’ve got a template all sized for it. How about an image to post to Google Plus? A Twitter post, or even an advertisement? They’ve got it.

Or use the custom dimensions feature to create absolutely anything.

Here’s an image I threw together in about a minute and a half, using a photo of my own (a not-very-good photo, I must admit).

image created in Canva

When you first sign up for Canva, they offer a series of tutorials that walk you through pretty much everything you need to know to create images with their service. There’s also the Design School Blog, which includes a wealth of information and ideas about design practices.

Cost is free to join. If you use one of their images, they charge you a whopping $1 when you download it. If you use your own photos and images as background, it’s free.

New! They’ve just introduced infographics, and, have started to roll out Canva for Business. I’ve had a chance to spend a few minutes with it, and it is amazing! Sign up here for early information.