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2 Free Tools In Canva Worth Checking Out
From graphic design and video editing to its AI text-to-image generator, Canva just keeps on getting better.
When I first started presenting and speaking on Free Digital Tools, Canva was always high on my list of free digital tools to check out. This was years ago and Canva was largely unknown. Today, it’s practically a household name.
And for great reason. It’s freaking amazing!
Even if you’re a professional graphic designer and an Adobe whiz, Canva has tools that are sure you make your life easier.
And they just keep on updating their toolkit. In the last few months alone, they’ve added a ton of new features to their already vibrant platform.
And while quite a few are reserved for premium members, plenty of them are available to everyone for free.
So now let’s check out two free tools waiting for you in Canva.
Tool type: Part of Canva (available on web, mobile and desktop)
If you’re an Adobe pro, this might not be all that exciting for you. (Though I’m pretty sure creating animation has never been this easy.)
For everyone else, head to Canva and work up your design.
Once you’re happy with how it looks, click on any element and select “Animate” from the top menu.
From there, you can select from a pre-built list of “Basic” and “Exaggerate” options.
You can also add “Page Animations” instead of individual “Element Animations.” These will shake up your graphic and give it a little extra life.
While fun, all of this is pretty standard, and has been around for a bit.
The option that I’m excited about is new. You can now create your own animation(s).
When you do so, you can take any element — including text — and make it do… whatever you want!
Here’s a simple GIF of it in action:
Once you’ve created your path, you can smooth or steady it out, adjust the speed and even “orient element to path.”
If you have a full-time video team working with you, this might not be too groundbreaking. For everyone else, I hope you can imagine the fun things you can do with this powerful, FREE tool!
FREE or FREEmium: FREE!
While Canva has a paid plan, this tool is currently available on their free version.
Canva Magic Design
Tool type: Also… part of Canva (which is also still available on web, mobile and desktop)
Canva, like everyone else these days, is all in on AI tools. I’ve messed around with a bunch of them. Just like all the other AI tools available out there, they can be a bit hit or miss.
Canva has recently launched:
a text-to-image AI tool,
an AI writing tool,
a Magic Eraser and Magic Replacer,
a beat sync tool for their video editor,
a presentation creator that will build decks for you
and a whole lot more.
You can read more about all these tools here. (I’ll also likely be doing another set of tools from this above list in a future email.)
But the free tool we’re talking about today is called Magic Design. Here’s how Canva describes it:
Struggling to visualize your ideal design, or find the perfect template? With Magic Design, you'll now be able to simply upload an image, select a style, and watch it come to life across a curated selection of your very own personalized and fully customizable templates to either download or edit further.
In other words, you can drop in any photo or graphic…
…and they’ll instantly design you a slew of graphics.
You can then tweak the style, colors, fonts and more until you find something you like.
Are the results good?
Sometimes! Definitely not always.
As with all things created by AI, I am less excited about the work getting done by the tools, than the tools helping us find inspiration. Because while some folks thrive starting with a blank sheet of paper, for many, starting is the hardest part. Now you don’t have to start from scratch. Pick a design that looks decent and re-work it until it’s ready to go.
While this feature is currently far from perfect, I still think there is still a lot to be excited about here.
FREE or FREEmium: FREE!
Same deal as above. While Canva has a paid plan that adds a ton of additional functionality, this tool is currently available on their free version.
I do want to clarify that I pay for Canva. It’s about $10 a month and for me, it is well worth the cost. Free Canva is an extremely powerful tool. Paid Canva, exponentially more so!
It can do all kinds of things in the world of graphic design and video editing. And it really does get better all the time.
Hit reply to this email and let me know what are some of your favorite tools in this powerful platform (whether you’re a paid or a free member).
Also, real quick, can you please take a moment and help us grow this little project? Help spread the word about Free Digital Tools with 2 or 3 people you think would appreciate it today.
See you in a fortnight,
PS - Since I wrote you last, I started a second podcast! Along with Step Up Your Social, I’m now also hosting Hello Merge Tag, which explores social media, politics and where they intersect. Listen to all episodes as they drop at HelloMergeTag.com or wherever you stream podcasts.