Have you ever wondered how a stunning digital image can become blurry and pixelated when printed?
Well, if you’ve noticed this problem, know that you’re not the only one experiencing such technical issues. Though you don’t need to blame your computer or printer for that.
Let alone your preferred graphic design tool like Canva.
If you’re a Canva enthusiast, you’ll be raving on and on about how nifty such software is in creating stellar graphic designs. Even if you’re a newbie, you won’t have trouble making one as the controls are user-friendly.
But, if you’re keen enough to notice, you’ll find that the images or elements you’ve downloaded as a JPG/PNG file from Canva become pixelated once printed.
So, how are we going to amend this “glitch?”
Well, there’s a one-trick pony solution to this dilemma, but there’s a way how to create and download high-resolution images in Canva.
Better read the article below for you to find out how exactly to do this the DIY way.
How do you download pictures/elements in high resolution (300 DPI) from Canva?
Creating and downloading high-resolution photos and elements in Canva entails three main steps. First, you’ll need to set the image size and choose the picture or element you’d want to use in your project template. After which, click on the download button and choose PDF print. Once you’re done, convert the pictures in the PDF into JPG or PNG using an online PDF converter before printing them.
Creating and downloading high-resolution (300 DPI) images in Canva: The steps
As mentioned earlier, there are three major steps on how you can ensure a high-quality photo after designing one in Canva.
However, know that each major step entails a more detailed process. So, what are you waiting for? Please continue reading to discover all about it.
Creating the design
Step 1: On the Canva homepage, select the “Create a design” button. Input the image dimensions you want (the higher the better in this case) and tap the “Create new design” option.
Step 2: Choose the image you’d want to use by heading over the “Photos” tab on the left-side menu of your Canva screen. Click and drag the photo.
Step 3: Once you’ve chosen the picture you’d like to use, click and drag it towards the project template.
Step 4: Adjust the image to make it fit the template. You can use the white dots and bars on the corners of the picture or right-click on the photo and choose the “Set image as background” in the dropdown menu.
Once you’re done making the necessary image adjustments, you can now proceed to the next step.
If you’re using elements instead of photos, you can still follow the same steps mentioned above before proceeding to the next phase. Just go to the “Elements” tab instead of heading over to the “Photos” option on the left-sided Canva menu.
Downloading your project into an image
Now that you’ve created your design, it’s time to download it on your device.
But, to ensure you’ll retain the high-resolution quality of the image, you need to make a few tweaks to the process.
Step 1: Click on the “Download” tab on the Canva toolbar above the template.
Step 2: In the “File type,” choose the “PDF Print” tab to ensure that the image you’re downloading has a DPI of 300 (standard resolution for high-quality pictures).
Step 3: Once done, tap the purple “Download” button and wait for the process to be finished.
After the downloading process, you can now view the said image as a PDF file. However, since PDF files aren’t web-friendly, you’ll need to do the next phase to render the photo usable.
Convert and print the photo
Since you cannot directly convert images in Canva, you’ll need to use free third-party online converters to get the file type you wish to have.
Step 1: Head over to the pdfconvertonline.com website.
Step 2: Head over to the “Convert PDF” option and click it. Once there, tap the “Choose file” button that appears on the form that will show on the screen.
Step 3: Tap on the “Open” button on the bottom part of the window that appears.
Step 4: Set the DPI to “300.” You can also change the JPG quality by inputting your desired value.
Step 5: Click on the red “Convert now” button.
Step 6: Scroll the page down until you find the “Output Files” box. Click on the newly converted file to view the image in another window.
Step 7: To save the photo, right-click on it and choose the “Save image As…” option from the dropdown menu that appears.
Once the downloading process is done, you can go ahead and view the photo on your device.
However, if you want to verify the image’s DPI, there are two ways on how you can do this depending on what OS your device is using.
On a PC: Right-click on the photo and select the “Properties” option from the dropdown menu that appears. Click on the “Details” tab to peek at the image resolution and other details.
On a Mac: Right-click on the image and click the “Get Info” option on the dropdown menu. Tap on the “More Info” option on the new window that appears to check the resolution.
You can also do this in Mac by heading over to the “Tools” section of the preview tool. Click on “Show Inspector” to view the image details.
Once there, take a look at the Image DPI to see if the 300 DPI you inputted earlier is followed.
If you’re planning to download the image in PNG format, you can follow the same steps mentioned above. Just tap on the “Free convert PDF to PNG” choice instead.
The how-to of downloading Canva elements in high resolution
Now that you’ve learned how to download high-resolution photos in Canva, can you also do the same process if you’re planning to use elements instead?
The answer: A big and resounding YES!
Follow the first few steps of the process mentioned above when you’re creating your project using photos.
The only difference is when you’re now on the download part.
Do note, though, that for you to download elements without a background, you can only use the PNG file to proceed. If you want to use JPG, the “Transparent background” option won’t appear.
Other than that difference, proceed as you would in downloading and printing a photo.
Other ways of converting PDF to PNG or JPG format
Now, if you find all those processes a hassle, there are other ways for you to save high-resolution pictures in the JPG/PNG formats.
The first option that you have is to use Photo editing software. Be it Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, or InDesign; it doesn’t matter.
Whichever software works best for you, go ahead with that choice. Just make sure that you can open the image in PDF format and, consequently, export it in PNG or JPG format.
If you don’t want to learn a whole new photo editing software just for conversion purposes, take advantage of the customization option in Canva.
Instead of using the usual resolutions you’ve been inputting, double the graphic size of the image itself. To do this, you’ll need to click on the “Resize” button on the upper left side of the Canva toolbar and input the doubled-up dimension.
Once you’re satisfied with the size, hit on the “Resize” button and carry on with creating your design.
However, while this method’s nifty, it has one major drawback. An increase in the photo’s dimensions means an increase in file size.
Most of the time, large image sizes aren’t too friendly for websites and social media. So, you might want to reconsider this option before using it.
While the second method’s the end of the road for most users, such isn’t the case for Mac users.
If you’re luckily a Mac user, there is an option for you to convert your PDF as JPG or PNG directly. Simply open the photo in the previewer tool.
Once you’re in the tool, head over to the “File” menu, click it, and choose the “Export” option in the dropdown menu that appears.
In the “Format” tab, choose either JPG or PNG on the save box to jumpstart the download process.
So, have you now decided on what method to use? You don’t have to torment your brains for it. Choose one that will work best for you, and you’re good to go.
Blurry image prints and the reasons behind them
While we already have mentioned the solutions in improving your Canva images’ print resolution, you’re probably curious now about other reasons that can cause photo blurring.
Aside from the image’s resolution, there are four other reasons behind the pixelating of Canva images when you print them.
Photo size on the design
Sometimes, the size of the image you’re using simply is too small for your template. No matter how you try to resize the photo, you’ll still end up with a stretch-out or a blurry image.
With this, you can try to place the picture on the template in smaller sizes instead of trying to fit it on the template. This will ultimately make the blurriness less obvious.
Yet, Canva doesn’t recommend using low-resolution pictures as backgrounds or large designs. So, if you have other image options, you better use them instead of the current one you have.
If you don’t have a desktop printer at home yet you want to print your project in Canva, you can most certainly avail of the Canva Print order option.
And, what’s nifty with this option is that you can check for your design’s output even before you place the order. That’s where the PDF Proof comes in.
PDF proof, simply put, is the sample of your work that you download right before placing your Canva Print order. Now, if you find that the proof’s blurry, then there’s a high chance that the printed images you’ll receive will be blurry as well.
If it is, then better to make adjustments before proceeding with the order.
Simply put, this refers to the source of the photo where you got the picture itself. Most of the time, the images you find on the internet are of low resolution to make them web-friendly.
And with low resolution, web-sourced images usually have a 72 DPI only compared to the standard of 300 for high-quality pictures.
But, there is ultimately a reason for using low-resolution images on the web. Technically, the lower the image resolution is, the faster the loading time is.
Hence, Canva recommends using pictures that you directly captured with a camera or those from legit photographers.
Dimensions of the image
Lastly, the photo dimensions. And, in this context, the image’s dimensions are measured in pixels or dots per inch. Hence, the term DPI.
So, if you’re planning to print your Canva design, know that the minimum standard DPI to have crisp and clear images is 300 DPI.
If your photos are sourced from the internet, then expect that the printout will be blurry. After all, web-based images only have 72 DPI as mentioned earlier.
So, before you use the picture, check its resolution first. Refer to the “Convert and print photo” section of this article to find out more about how to proceed with checking the image resolution.
The implication of DPI in printed image quality
For the not-so-techy people, DPI is the furthest thing that’ll come to their minds if they get blurry prints. For them, the easiest fix is to stretch the photo or downsize it to create better prints.
However, if you’re knowledgeable about how pixel density affects image quality, then you’ll undoubtedly save yourself more trouble.
Dots per inch, or DPI, measures the resolution of both scanned and printed documents. Simply put, it refers to the number of dots that you can place in a line in a 1-inch square.
The general rule for DPI is this: the higher the dot density, the higher the picture’s resolution is. And, with higher dot density, the greater resolution the photo has. Hence, the better quality of the image in question.
Technically, there are some guidelines you’ll need to keep in mind when accounting for DPI with printing pictures. Please take a look at them here.
- 150 dpi or less (72 dpi is the standard for web pictures)
- Best used for scanning documents and digital storage.
- 200-300 dpi
- 300 dpi is considered the minimum standard for quality pictures
- Best for booklets, flyers, samples, and brochures for better printed image quality
- 600 dpi or higher
- Results in large image file types, hence requiring more storage memory
- It takes longer to scan
- Can only be printed in professional print services as most desktop printers can’t produce photos of such quality
Now that you know more about DPI’s relation with print image quality, you can better use this for choosing the best photos according to your purpose.
With all the information you’ve learned, are you now ready to create stunning, high-resolution designs in Canva? If you do, then better start making one now and apply what you’ve learned!
But, if you want to review the regular way of downloading images and elements in Canva, read the “How to Download Pics and Elements from Canva” article now.
Hey guys! It’s me, Marcel, aka Maschi. I earn a full-time income online and on MaschiTuts I gladly share with you guys how I stay on top of the game! I run several highly profitable blogs & websites and love to speak about these project whenever I get a chance to do so. I do this full-time and wholeheartedly. In fact, the moment I stopped working an 8-to-5 job and finally got into online business as a digital entrepreneur, is problably one of the best decisions I ever took in my life. And I would like to make sure that YOU can get on this path as well! Don’t let anyone tell you that this can’t be done. Sky’s the limit, really…as long as you BELIEVE in it! And it all starts right here..at Maschituts!