Canva for technical writers


This past summer I discovered a fun and useful tool for technical writers. Canva is a website (and also an app available for iPhone and iPad) used for graphic design and photo editing.

The large number of templates, free icons, illustrations, photos, text, backgrounds, and layouts for any type of print or online document you need sets Canva apart. While this might seem more useful for an amateur graphic artist, Canva has so many templates that can be incorporated into a technical writing project. Some of the templates that are more relevant to technical writing include:

  • letter
  • presentation
  • resume
  • flyer
  • trifold brochure
  • infographic
  • blog graphic

Click here to see the variety of templates Canva offers.

I have used Canva to make:

  • blog header
  • business card
  • invitation
  • resume
  • cover letter

I have also used Canva to write a reference document that summarizes technical writing concepts and guidelines which you can download here.

While I had a lot of fun experimenting with text and icons when writing this reference document, I wouldn’t recommend using Canva for writing documents that are much longer than a page. It’s not a sophisticated text editor and can run pretty slowly as you’re using it on the internet (I’ve never tried the iTunes app). So it’s certainly no replacement for Microsoft Word. But for shorter projects or documents that contain more graphic elements than text, I highly recommend this tool!

Click here to visit Canva’s website

Click here to download the Chrome web app for easy access to Canva

Click here to see the app for iPhone and iPad


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