Let’s learn how to design kickass Pinterest graphics using Canva. This alternative graphic design program is free and easy to use. Not everyone has Adobe Photoshop so often what I share here on my blog, it might not be a possible solution for you, and let’s face it, I want you to have kickass Pinterest graphics!

How to Design Kickass Pinterest Graphics Using Canva for FREE! Check out this video tutorial to show you how to make beautiful images for your blog to be shared virally all over Pinterest! And, get some FREE stock photos from my library!

What is Canva?

You may be asking, what is this Canva? Or, maybe you’ve heard of it but didn’t know it’s capabilities. Canva is a free, online design program that lets you create stunning graphics quickly, and easily.

When you don’t have the luxury of affording Photoshop or just don’t see the need, you still want your Pinterest graphics to look great.

What Canva Won’t Do

Canva isn’t going to give you full control over your graphics like Photoshop would. If you’re looking to do more with gradient overlays and precise editing, Canva won’t do that. But, I guess that because you are a blogger or maybe a YouTuber that just wants a pretty Pinterest graphic to market their business, the need for full blown Photoshop isn’t there. And, that’s where this excellent, free program comes into play!

How to Design Kickass Pinterest Graphics Using Canva

I previously wrote a tutorial (with video) on how to design kickass Pinterest graphics using Photoshop, so check that out if you’d so like. But let’s start by writing out some step-by-step instructions and then get into a new video tutorial of how you can create several kickass Pinterest graphics using Canva.

Stock Photos for Your Pinterest Graphics

When you visit Pinterest, you’ll find a lot of really eye-pleasing designs. Most are going to contain photographs (while some do just stick to graphic shapes and colors only). There are a few places to find stock photos that won’t break your bank:

  • Bloguettes – offers a $10 a month library where they upload lots of new images every week
  • Fancy Crave – offers free stock images to use that are under the Creative Commons Public Domain use
  • Unsplash – offers free stock images to use that are under the Creative Commons Zero use
  • PinkPot – she offers complimentary free images for non-commercial use

Or take your own photos. I wrote up a post on how I often take some really simple photos and where I find some cheap props that aren’t ugly!

Steps to Design a Pinterest Graphic Using Canva

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  1. Your Pinterest graphics should all have the same dimensions for consistency for your brand. I recommend sizing them for the width of your blog. So if your blog area is 800 px wide, then make your graphics 800 px wide. You can make the height anything, but longer images look best on Pinterest. In the top right of Canva, choose Custom Dimensions, and then enter the size you have determined for your Pinterest graphics.
  2. Next, upload your image. To do so, click on Uploads in the left sidebar, and then click the green button to choose your image. Your uploads will stay here for future use as well.
  3. Drag your image over to your new canvas by clicking on the image, and sliding it over. You’ll need to resize it to fit the canvas. If you’re using a high-resolution photo, don’t worry about sizing up here, it will be fine.
  4. Click on your image on the canvas and then choose Filter in the pop-up. From here, you can adjust the brightness and contrast of your image. For bright photos, I often want them to be visible but less distracting, so for my example, I reduced the brightness and contrast to -60 for each.
  5. One thing that makes Canva easy to use is the already-made shapes and designs that come with it. You aren’t having to do all of this work like you would with Photoshop. So, let’s add a shape on top of our photo. Choose from the left sidebar the Elements option. Then select Grids and choose the first option and drag it over to your canvas, on top of your image. You can then resize it smaller so it fits the middle of your image and still lets you see the image.
  6. Next, while the shape is selected, the pop-up choose the circle that has the image inside it from your grid shape, here you can change the color. I click the + button to choose a nice pink.
  7. I’ll reduce the transparency (this is opacity in Photoshop) by choosing the drop-down arrow in the top pop-up while my shape is selected. I reduced the transparency to 50.
  8. Now let’s add our blog title text. Make sure you always use that title for naming your images, in your social media posts, and throughout your blog post for SEO ranking help. Click on the text option from the left sidebar. Canva makes it super easy here because they have created pre-made options for you. You just change the text! Choose something that works well for the length of your blog post, and emphasizes the word you want showcased. Drag it over on top of your text click to replace the text. You may need to adjust the point size depending on the length of your words. Feel free to change the colors as well.
  9. If you want to create your own title setup, just click on one of the top options. I did this for the bottom portion of this sample to list my website address.
  10. Then, to just add a little jazz to it, I added another Element from the lines options to set it off a bit.

Video Tutorial How To Design Kickass Pinterest Graphics Using Canva


Holly McCaig

About Holly McCaig

Hey you! I'm Holly McCaig and I'm super excited to help you love and ROCK your Etsy shop. I will help you have an amazing online presence so you can build a strong business and attract more customers to your shop. Let's do this together! Let's connect on Pinterest or Instagram, k?

About Holly McCaig

Hey you! I'm Holly McCaig and I'm super excited to help you love and ROCK your Etsy shop. I will help you have an amazing online presence so you can build a strong business and attract more customers to your shop. Let's do this together! Let's connect on Pinterest or Instagram, k?


  1. Miss Lucy on March 2, 2016 at 10:26 am

    Yayy! Thank you for creating this! I love Canva but my graphics aren’t that great lol. I’m looking for consistency for my brand so this is a start!

    • Holly McCaig on March 2, 2016 at 10:32 am

      Hey Miss Lucy! So glad you got some use out of this. It does take a little time to figure out the aesthetic you want to go for. But, once you do, then you can have three (or even just one) that you use as a template to guide you and keep on point.

  2. Candace on September 28, 2016 at 11:03 am

    Hi thank you for your post. My question is how to link your blog and the graphic together on Pintrest?

    • Holly McCaig on September 28, 2016 at 11:44 am

      Hi Candace! So, if someone pins it from your blog using the extension for Pinterest for their browser, it will automatically link to the post. If you are pinning it from your blog, that’s how you would do it. So, get the extension for your browser. To find it for your browser, Google: Pinterest extension for (and add your browser name – safari, etc.) and that should lead you to where to get it. You can also install a plugin in WordPress called, JQuery Pin It. This helps a popup come up on your Pinterest graphic on your blog post for someone to click and pin directly to Pinterest. It can be found here: https://wordpress.org/plugins/jquery-pin-it-button-for-images/

  3. travelwithtarah on February 7, 2017 at 11:05 pm

    Really helpful post!! Need to work on my Pinterest presence and have been trying to find a good alternative to photoshop and I think I finally found one! Thanks again

  4. Marbled Minds on June 10, 2017 at 4:19 pm

    Thank you so much for this post! It is really helpful seeing something like this especially when I am just starting my blog!

  5. Lisa Fear on July 10, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    Hi! Thanks for writing such an informative article. I know that Canva is the way to go for the best Pinterest posts but I really didn’t know where to start. I would also like to say that your website looks very impressive.
    Sincerely, Lisa Fear

  6. Raquel Furchinetti on July 22, 2017 at 8:59 am

    I just loved the tutorial. I learned new ideas of how to craft a great pin that I didn´t knew before. Thanks Holly 😉

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