Hackernoon logoDoes Canva Hurt or Help Graphic Designers? Hacker Noon on Design by@linh

Does Canva Hurt or Help Graphic Designers? Hacker Noon on Design

Linh Dao Smooke Hacker Noon profile picture

@linhLinh Dao Smooke

Hacker Noon Mama-in-Chief. But also like a real mom (to Norah).

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Do time-saving apps like Canva help or hinder the careers of freelancers and digital creatives? Tell us what you think!

At Hacker Noon, we are all about collaboration and open sharing of ideas, and love to share this process with you via our Slogging (blogging for Slack) app that lets anyone turn a Slack thread into a beautiful Hacker Noon article.

This Slogging thread by Linh, Amy, Kien, Natasha, Akasha Rose and Shaina occurred in Hacker Noon's official #podcast channel and has been edited for readability.

LinhJun 25, 2021, 4:03 PM

Kien this is your turf but I think it’s time we update the default thumbnails for YouTube (again) I feel like our current one looks, for lack of a better word, too visually boring with all similar design. Here’s side by side comparison of ours and another tech channel. How do we engineer this kind of exciting, useful, user-friendly thumbnail and not have you necessarily needing to design it every time? Is it as simple as taking a better zoom screenshot where everybody smiles or shows some kind of emotion with a big text bubble a la Hacker Noon? I’d also encourage you to look through some other successful YouTube tech channels to see what they did well.

AmyJun 25, 2021, 4:47 PM

Yeah, I love those thumbnails. Maybe we need to take screenshots from the video.

KienJun 25, 2021, 4:58 PM

Unfortunately, that kind of thumbnail you’re referencing takes more time than you think, with the cutting people out of the background and everything. what do we think of that?

KienJun 25, 2021, 4:59 PM

Since each thumbnail is kind of different, there will be no such thing as templates and every time I (or whoever in charge of this) will have to jump in and use a bit of creativity to design the thumbs 😂

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:00 PM

I don’t think it needs to look exactly like that! Lemme find some other screenshots I like.

KienJun 25, 2021, 5:00 PM

Closest we did was these thumbnails.

AmyJun 25, 2021, 5:01 PM

Oh, I like that better.

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:02 PM

Yeah, this one looks better! A little too green maybe but can mix and match with brand colors guideline? How long do those take to create?

KienJun 25, 2021, 5:02 PM

Can always bring that back, we lil twist 😂

KienJun 25, 2021, 5:02 PM

Um i remembered Natasha did most of the cropping people out? so maybe not that… long? 😂

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:02 PM

How long does it take though? Ideally I want something replicable..ish

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:03 PM

Look how simple this one is

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:03 PM

(She does have good stills from an expensive camera though 😂)

KienJun 25, 2021, 5:03 PM

LOL but we don't have the aesthetics to follow that kind of simple 😂

😂 1
KienJun 25, 2021, 5:03 PM


NatashaJun 25, 2021, 5:04 PM

Hey team Canva has a background remover

:brain: 2
NatashaJun 25, 2021, 5:06 PM

It's a premium feature 🤗

Just click on "effects" while your uploaded image is selected - it's the first option:

🔥 1
KienJun 25, 2021, 5:06 PM

Cool! problem solved

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:07 PM

Genius!!!! We do that on top of 5 custom colors and BOOM

💯 2
KienJun 25, 2021, 5:07 PM

Hmm hope they have that outline feature, too!

KienJun 25, 2021, 5:07 PM

Let me go see

KienJun 25, 2021, 5:13 PM

OHHHH SHEEET, THEY DO! we can play with shadow effects and make it the outline effect (which will come in handy for whoever is designing these!)

💚 1
KienJun 25, 2021, 5:16 PM

People say Canva are stealing jobs from graphic designers I'm saying IT SAVES US SO MUCH TIME lol 😂

😂 2
:fireball: 2
LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:17 PM

Yup!!! Time to actually design lolllll!

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:20 PM

Hang and I just had a similar convo convincing a dev (who shall not be named) that he should just pay for a tool instead of spending time coding. The long view is it saves you time! Use tools to our advantage so we can use our brains for actually demanding high skilled tasks!

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:25 PM

Btw Kien what if you hit "slog" on this thread and title it “Does Canva hurt of help graphic designers? A designer’s take” or something like that.

KienJun 25, 2021, 5:27 PM

I was thinking of that, but I'm also scratching my head with the startups video 😭

LinhJun 25, 2021, 5:30 PM

Slogging is so simple though just hit create draft!!!

LinhJun 28, 2021, 8:31 PM

Akasha Rose what if you add your 2 cents here (or not) about other types of freelancing work vs. tools?

Akasha RoseJun 28, 2021, 11:52 PM

When I do Youtube strategy for startups I always recommend Canva. I've used the remove background feature since it launched and it is great. I didn't know about the outline feature though, that's cool!

Akasha RoseJun 28, 2021, 11:58 PM

In the future, most creative jobs will be done via AI. A lot of people in digital lost their jobs in the early 2000s when these jobs went offshore. And then came the rise of Fiverr etc that means that even providing services as a freelancer was undercut.
So tools like Canva are just a progression of this, and then there will be AI. We will put our video through an AI interface and say what mood we want and it will suggest an SEO and clickbait optimised title and even produce the thumbnail. So even Canva will be disrupted in about 5 years, no more.
The system is veering towards ultimate efficiency. This isn't a bad thing, as long as we implement a global UBI. Universal Basic Income. The issue at the moment is that all the wealth we generate (via mining, energy, resources, banks) goes to big companies and the wealth of 50% of the world is concentrated in the hands of 1%.
Redistribute that 50% of wealth (e.g. via DeFi) and have AI do the work, and human culture will experience a golden age of creativity and prosperity that isn't tied to physical labour or the time dollar.

ShainaJul 3, 2021, 9:26 AM

Yaayy! hello everyone, Linh as Kien is busy with startup.so, for the time being, I just took Hackernoon latest podcast thumbnail and did something in different style like you said about zoom screenshot, big bubble text and all💕.
But the thing is there's no permanent template for this, we have to design it every time, but the plus point here is by using Canva "background remover" feature it can be done in less than 15 minutes, all we need to do is take screenshot of zoom, remove bg, add some elements (like bubble text), put hackernoon logo and taaa daaa its ready...:carlton:
Here's something I created from latest Hackernoon podcast thumbnail, just a rough idea😄

ShainaJul 3, 2021, 10:19 AM

Kien you can take a look and I think I should have added "white outline" (or green maybe) in that also👀

LinhJul 3, 2021, 1:01 PM

Awwww that’s so cute!!!!

💕 1
LinhJul 3, 2021, 1:01 PM

Let’s not do green on white though haha

ShainaJul 3, 2021, 2:24 PM

Yeah sure!😄

KienJul 5, 2021, 2:28 PM

Thanks Shaina, i’ll get to this tonight!

💕 1
KienJul 5, 2021, 3:26 PM

What do we think about this one? def will take more time than the current template

😍 6
AmyJul 5, 2021, 3:28 PM


NatashaJul 5, 2021, 3:28 PM


NatashaJul 5, 2021, 3:29 PM

Also double YAY Alex Cobb and Amy the intro snippet ft. richard-kubina sounds great!!! Linh your intro... OMG everybody great job :star-struck:

💚 1
LinhJul 5, 2021, 3:34 PM

Kien looks awesome 😎 is this something Shaina perhaps can do in like less than 24 hours 3 times a week?

KienJul 5, 2021, 3:39 PM

def doable in less than 24 hours, but i will need to give her (or anyone in the future in charge of that) a tutorial vid - which wont happen until after wednesday

KienJul 5, 2021, 3:40 PM

So for this week’s Topic, I can do it Amy yall can just send me the thumbnail image! Tomorrow’s when we’re posting right?

AmyJul 5, 2021, 3:40 PM


AmyJul 5, 2021, 5:59 PM

More thumbnail inspo that might be less design heavy?

LinhJul 5, 2021, 6:15 PM

Looks like they have clean background that’s why it works

AmyJul 5, 2021, 6:16 PM

TRUE no one needs nic cage

😂 1
LinhJul 5, 2021, 6:16 PM

Haha also my background is always chaotic =)))

NatashaJul 5, 2021, 8:40 PM

I feel like Nic Cage might one day come on the podcast if you keep that up for long enough

AmyJul 5, 2021, 8:52 PM

OMG stop LOL can you IMAGINE

Linh Dao Smooke Hacker Noon profile picture
by Linh Dao Smooke @linh. Hacker Noon Mama-in-Chief. But also like a real mom (to Norah). My Digital Home


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