See this collage board I made? I bet you've noticed these on your social media quite a lot over the past few years. They're fun, right? I bet you also thought they were tricky to make or that you had to be a graphic designer to put them together. FALSE! You can do it, too! All you need is an app or software that has a background remover tool, like Canva, Adobe Spark or even Microsoft Word (yeah, even word). Ready?
Today I'm going to teach you how to make a collage board in Canva because I believe it to be the easiest and most effective tool out there. I used to use even more advanced Adobe tools, like Photoshop, to make them. Turns out that is highly unnecessary now that the background remover tool has become so widespread. Basically, you're learning at the right time in history and saving quite a bit of time!
So first things first- you need to have a Canva Pro plan in order to have access to the background remover tool. The free version of Canva is super, You can also test out the pro version and see how you like it before you commit to it for the year. That way you can try making some boards today, without a subscription! Whoop! Fair warning though-- if you're a blogger or creative of any kind, you will probably end up wanting full access. It's $119.40 for a year (~$10/month). A tiny fraction of Creative Cloud, but alas, still an expense.
Okay so once you have the Canva Pro Plan started as either or a trial or paid membership, you can move through the following steps:
First you will want to "save as" all your images ahead of time that you will be using for your collage. I like to save mine into a folder on my desktop for quick access and easy deletion when I'm done. Remember- if you are going to note or link to any of the items in your collage, you'll also want to have a document where you copy paste key info and links. I like using Google Docs or having a blog post draft open.
Open Canva. Go to the top righthand corner of the window and click on the teal 'Create a design' button.
A search tool will drop down. Type in the file based on where you will be publishing your board, ex. Pinterest Pin or Instagram Post. Hint- if you will want to publish your board in multiple places, just start with one and you can resize the file for multiple places later.
Select the file type you want to create (I'm using a Pinterest Pin for this tutorial).
You'll see a blank page open up with tools on the left. Most often collage boards have a white background. Your images will look best over white, so I recommend keeping it this way.
On the far left vertical tool bar select 'Uploads'. Then select the teal 'Upload media' button.
Import your images from wherever you saved them (your computer, Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.)
Allow your images to load. Double click an image to add it to the document.
Be sure the image is selected. Go to the top horizontal tool bar and select 'Effects'. Then select 'Background Remover'.
Once the background has been removed, resize and move your image to wherever you want it to appear on your board. I like to remove the background of all my images before I worry about final placement.
If you want to layer images over each other, just right click (or two finger tap the mouse pad if you have a single click mouse) and select to 'Send Backward' or 'Send forward' to create the order you want.
Once you have your images set up you can add a title or number to your board if you wish by using the 'Text' tool in the lefthand vertical tool bar. Remember- if you have branding, try to use your branded fonts, colors, logo, etc. where necessary.
All done? It's time to export! Select the download icon in the top righthand corner of the window. Select the file type you wish to use. I often use PNG for the quality. If you are only posting to Instagram, you can use a JPG because you don't need as high resolution as you would for Pinterest or a blog. You can even select a PDF if you need that! Now select the teal 'Download' button.
Yay! You did it! Go get your collage board file wherever you saved it and put it to use! If it's your first collage board, tag me so that I can see your handy work and offer a bit of praise-- @hammer_kate
It's super useful to learn a new trick, but I hope that you get more out of my tutorials than just learning to do a thing. I want it to remind you that you are able. I want it to give you confidence and determination in what you offer the world (and what you do for yourself).
Pin it and save it for later!!
Note: The link to Canva is an affiliate link. If you decide to buy the Pro version and you use my link I may receive a small commission. If you use the free version I will not-- either way, I encourage you to use the version that works best for your needs!