When it comes to social media, branding, creating special posts there are many tools out there that you can use. I was actually interested in how the tools compare with respect to ease of use or capabilities. Let’s have a look at Pinterest posts. In order to make it comparable, I picked the same photos and the same message. I decided to compare two free to use tools – Canva and Adobe Spark as well as Corel PaintShop Pro 2018. Both of the free tools also offer upgrade options that we will get to a little later.
The aim is to create a post about preparation of a perfect cup of cappuccino.
Canva – first of the three images from the left
- Select a post type, Pinterest in this case
- You can select one of the available layouts and substitute pictures and text with your own. However, you can also create an entire post from scratch
- I filled the canvas with beans image, subsequently added the two other images by dragging them from my uploads onto a canvas and resized them easily
- Now I was ready to add text to the post. Text can be added as heading, subheading or body text. You can also use one of the available preset brand fonts
- Once completed you can download your creation. Direct sharing is only available for Twitter and Facebook
Adobe Spark – middle of the three images
- Identify a template you would like to use or create a post from scratch
- You can select one of available layouts, which is what I did
- Upload images into the selected template
- Resizing of the images is limited and I have found no way to add an image on top of a background image
- Adding text is very easy, as is altering of font face, size and color. Once you are done with text, it can be re-positioned on a page
- One strange thing about editing text is that instead of a box on the image, you get a big screen with a line on which you type the text you wish to have. This text gets resized easily, it is just a bit awkward when you are creating your post
- Once you are done your post is ready to share. Image can be downloaded, a link can be shared on Twitter, Facebook or by email
Corel PaintShop Pro – the third of the images
- Select File>New and select a Pinterest template under Social, select a background color
- Select and open the images you want to use in your post
- Copy each of the images as new layer to the background layer
- I selected on the images as a background image
- Resize the images to your liking, if needed you can adjust the appearance of images or crop them as you wish
- Images can be rotated, framed and positioned anywhere you want on the page
- Subsequently I added text and then saved the file as .PSP file for any future changes and as .JPG for upload to Pinterest
What is the verdict now that the posts are created?
- Ease of use – Canva and Corel PainShop Pro – 5/5, AdobeSpark – 4/5
- Ability to resize/re-position images – Canva and Corel PainShop Pro – unlimited, AdobeSpark – limited
- Text choices – Corel PainShop Pro – unlimited, Canva and AdobeSpark – limited
- Templates – Canva and AdobeSpark offer a number of templates, only one free canvas in Corel PainShop Pro
- Availability of stock images – only available in Canvas, some are free and the rest is priced at $1.00
- Importing images – all tools allow import of images from a computer, AdobeSpark also allows import of images from Lightroom, Creative Cloud, Google or Dropbox
- Sharing posts – all of the creations have to be downloaded before they can be shared on Pinterest.
What functionality do you get for free?
Canva allows you to share your creations with up to 10 people, you can organize your designs into 2 folders, upload up to 1Gb of images and access over 8000 templates.
AdobeSpark allows you to create graphics, sync creations across the devices, it also allows you to resize the image for other social media posts or standard sizes
In order to add your personal branding: logos, text and colors in AdobeSpark you need to upgrade to Premium for $9.99 a month. AdobeSpark is also available as part of Creative Cloud.
Canva on the other hand will require you to upgrade before you can resize your posts, save your brand colors, logos and fonts. You also get unlimited folders, access to 300 000 free stock images/illustrations and templates. Pricing is $12.99 per month per user and you can have a team of up to 30 people.
Corel PaintShop Pro 2018 is not free, although you can get a 30 day free trial for testing. Pricing is $54.99 for a downloaded version. It offers you full ability to edit your images, be creative with them and easily resize the posts you created. You can add your own logos, select your own colors and fonts.
What should you use?
The tool you decide on depends on your needs. If you want to do things yourself the best is to try the free tools first to create some test posts. However, you may want to consult a graphic designer or a photographer who does graphic design as well, if you have a particular job in mind.