Unlock Unlimited AI Image Generation in Canva for Free

Author: Making the Photo: AI EditionTime: 2023-12-29 10:45:00

Table of Contents

Introduction to Canva's Built-In Text-to-Image AI Generator

Canva recently introduced an exciting new AI-powered text-to-image generator tool built right into its popular graphic design platform. This innovative feature allows users to simply type a text prompt and have Canva's AI generate a unique corresponding image. As AI image generation gains mainstream traction, Canva's offering provides an easy way for creators to leverage this cutting-edge technology.

In this article, we'll explore what Canva's new AI tool is, provide an overview of the broader landscape of AI image generators, and then dive into specifics on how to use Canva's text-to-image feature to create your own AI art.

What is an AI Text-to-Image Generator?

An AI text-to-image generator is a type of machine learning model that's trained on massive datasets of images and text descriptions in order to generate completely new photographic images based on text input prompts from users. The AI has learned associations between textual concepts and visual elements, allowing it to render images matching supplied text descriptions. So in simple terms, you type text explaining what you want to see, like "a red flower in a blue vase on a window sill" and the AI will generate a novel image depicting that description. The technology is still evolving but results can be remarkablyrealistic and detailed.

Overview of Popular AI Image Generators

Canva is joining other established players in the AI image generation space. Two of the most well-known examples are DALL-E 2 from OpenAI and Midjourney. DALL-E 2 stunned many with its ability to create photorealistic images for an incredible variety of text prompts. Midjourney produces more stylized, artistic interpretations but with impressive fluidity and imagination. Stable Diffusion is another increasingly popular open source image AI. Canva's offering brings the convenience of baked-in AI image generation to its widely used graphic design platform. But understanding the capabilities of tools like DALL-E 2 and Midjourney helps set expectations for what Canva's AI can currently produce.

Step-by-Step Guide to Using Canva's Text-to-Image Tool

Getting started with Canva's text-to-image generator is simple. In just a few clicks, you can access the tool, craft a text prompt, generate AI images, and incorporate them into your designs. Here, we'll walk through the full process step-by-step.

Accessing the Text-to-Image Generator in Canva

To find Canva's new text-to-image tool, first open up Canva and start a new blank canvas or template. Then locate and click the "More" icon (3 vertical dots) in the left sidebar. This will open up a menu - click the purple "Text to Image" icon. A sidebar will slide out with a text field labeled "Describe the image you want to create". This is where you'll type prompts for the AI image generator.

Crafting Effective Prompts for the AI

The text prompts you supply are critical for getting great results from Canva's AI image generator. The more detailed and descriptive the better. Start with the main subject or focal point - for example, "a turtle". Then add descriptive details like color, age, pose, background, etc. Such as "A green sea turtle swimming under the blue ocean surface". Some tips for creating effective prompts:

  • Use specific details like exact colors (#0099ff vs "blue")
  • Describe surroundings, background, landscapes
  • Add modifiers like ages, poses, actions
  • List multiple elements you want included
  • Keep prompts under 280 characters
It may take some trial and error to get prompts tuned for the style of image you're envisioning. But nailing down an engaging, descriptive prompt is key to getting captivating AI generated images in Canva. ### Generating and Saving AI Images in Canva Once you've entered a text prompt, click the "Generate image" button and Canva's AI will start creating! The tool outputs two image options at a time. Click on any images you want to save to add them to your design canvas. Selected images get saved to Your Uploads so you can reuse them later. If you don't click on a generated image, it gets discarded and lost forever. So make sure to select any winners you'll want in the future. You can then edit or stylize the added images like any photo or graphic in Canva. When you're happy with the AI generated pictures, export your design containing the images out of Canva as you normally would.

Comparing Canva's AI Tool to Other Image Generators

How does Canva's baked-in text-to-image generator compare to leading standalone AI image tools like DALL-E 2, Midjourney, and Stable Diffusion? Here we highlight some key similarities and differences.

Midjourney vs Canva Image Generation

Midjourney allows more control over image sizes and aspect ratios compared to Canva's fixed square layouts. Midjourney also enables more fine-grained prompting and styling options. However, Canva's integration directly into a polished design program is more convenient for easily adding AI art to creations. Stylistically, Midjourney's paintings tend to look more artistic and abstract compared to Canva's more photorealistic renditions.

DALL-E 2 vs Canva Image Generation

DALL-E 2 generates remarkably life-like, photographic images tailored to prompts. Canva's results appear more basic and less refined than DALL-E 2's intricate artwork. However, DALL-E 2 lacks Canva's built-in image editing and project creation workflows fueled by AI art. Also notable is that DALL-E 2 provides four image options at a time compared to Canva's two. This gives creators more AI raw material to choose from per prompt.

Stable Diffusion vs Canva Image Generation

Of the other major image AI systems, Canva's output looks most akin to Stable Diffusion renditions. Both produce polished digital images rather than the painterly aesthetic of Midjourney. Canva's integration directly into an easy-to-use graphic design app again differentiates itself.

Limitations of Canva's AI Text-to-Image Generator

While Canva delivering built-in AI image generation is a trailblazing innovation, the first iteration does come with some limitations:

  • A daily cap of around 24 images - less than competitors
  • Restrictions on generating content deemed inappropriate
  • Constrained level of user control compared to advanced platforms like Midjourney

However, for most everyday design needs, Canva's text-to-image automation delivers ample, free access to leading-edge AI art capabilities.

Conclusion and Next Steps for Using Canva's AI Tool

Canva's new text-to-image generator brings the power of AI art creation to the masses within a user-friendly graphic design environment. While pros and cons exist compared to specialized AI platforms, Canva strikes an optimal balance of capabilities for mainstream creators.

We've only scratched the surface of possibilities with Canva's text-to-image tool in this article. As you explore prompts and fine-tune images for your projects, the AI abilities should continue advancing rapidly. Integrating Canva's output into video edits, 3D environments, animations and more can spawn even more creativity. We can't wait to see what you build!


Q: Is Canva's text-to-image generator actually free to use?
A: Yes, Canva's built-in AI image generator is completely free to use, even on Canva's free account tier. You can generate up to 24 images per day without any payment.

Q: What file formats do the AI images use?
A: The images generated by Canva's text-to-image tool are saved as JPG or PNG files that you can download and use anywhere.

Q: Can I recreate images I've already generated?
A: Unfortunately you cannot regenerate the exact same images again. However, you can download previously generated images to reuse or modify the prompt to try generating similar variations.

* This blog post is a summary of this video.