• Diana Tan

How Canva Saved My Life

First year university has definitely introduced me to a lot of important skills, and one of them is design skill. At first I thought that it took professional photoshop skills to make impactful graphic designs, but really, with canva, anyone can make an eye-catching design! From making creative graphics for school clubs to designing a birthday card for roommates, Canva is truly a lifesaver. I promise you, this is NOT sponsored - so stay until the end for my honest thoughts on Canva!


I have always had a passion for graphic design, but I did not know how to get started with practicing my skills. Luckily in first year university, I developed my design skills through being involved in extracurriculars. In one of the organizations (the On Canada Project), I was in charge of creating Instagram posts to present updates about the current pandemic. I had no idea how I was going to make my designs, until I discovered Canva. Once I became familiar with the tool, I realized that Canva is such a lifesaver that I can already rely on to make a creative, informative design.


Here are some of my past work with Canva:



Now, you might be wondering, how did I make those designs? Well, the first step is choosing a template. For any designs, choosing the right template saves you tons of time from building one from scratch. Thankfully, Canva offers thousands of templates to choose from! To find one that suits your design purpose, simply use the search bar. For example, if you wish to make a poster regarding climate change, type in “climate” or other relevant keywords to find environmental-themed templates. After deciding on the template, you can go ahead and make your design a one of a kind!


To make your design stand out, the “elements” bar on the left side of the screen is all you need to look into! It offers a wide range of design resources including graphics, photos, audios and video clips. Similar to choosing a template, you can also use the search bar to narrow down your options and find the perfect graphics to decorate your work. You can also upload your own cliparts or pictures, change font size, and add customized charts… Canva really has everything you need!


Now, you might be wondering if it is worth getting the Canva Pro. The main difference between the free version and the Canva Pro is that the latter one offers a greater selection of templates and graphics without the watermark. However, at a fee of $149.99 CAD/year, getting the Pro may not be worth it if you are only using Canva for occasional designs. If you are planning on designing posters for an organization or club, then I suggest signing up for the Enterprise plan for $40.00 CAD/year, which gives you the same features as Pro on top of exclusive features just for your organization!


After all, it is important to have basic design techniques, and Canva is here to help! With its built-in templates and various graphics, Canva really saves your time and simplifies the steps in making a pretty-looking graphic. If you are looking for a design tool to create your next poster, don’t hesitate to check out Canva.


Diana Tian

BMOS and Ivey AEO @ Western University

Campus Ambassador @ LEAP Canada


About the Author

Diana has been with LEAP since 2021 as a Campus Ambassador. Passionate about helping incoming students adjust to post-secondary education, Diana shares her personal experience and tips through writing. Diana will continue to assist new students with their academic journey at LEAP Canada.



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