All about Canvas
Here are some of the key features of the Canvas app, including the new Canvas
Create digital signage content in the correct screen format Canvas presets your design size, optimizing it for a portrait or landscape screen format. No more black bars and easy-to-read digital signs that your audience will actually read. Our Gallery of Templates has been designed with screen best practices in mind.
Design your custom brand with colors, images, logos, and shapes Canvas’s superpower is ensuring every poster, sign, or notice you create is on-brand. With all the tools to add custom fonts, change colors and upload your brand assets with ease.
Elements of your brand can also be locked down so that Creators and Editors can replace text or images without being able to change the layout or design.
Re-use one design multiple times with Templates
No more design strain.
Saving your Canvases as Templates for teams to reuse makes creating new, on-brand collateral and updating existing notices with the latest information, much easier. Perfect for local teams, or Marketing and HR Managers to create their own content.
Add QR codes to your designs and collect their metrics
You can easily add a link as a QR code with your design, and the scans and metrics for this are collected in your account. A handy option if your company consists of deskless workers.
Get started by logging into your account and choosing the Canvas tab from the left-hand menu.
Choose which type of Canvas you want to create
There are four key options for what you can do within Canvas.
- Create a new Canvas from scratch
- Create and save a new Canvas Template
- Use one of your organization’s existing Templates or a Template from the Gallery
- Edit or reuse an existing Canvas
In the following steps, we’ll walk you through each of the four options for how to create, save and reuse digital signage templates for your screens.
To start designing a new Canvas from scratch select the “New Canvas” button.
Here, you can rename your Canvas and choose from a landscape or portrait design depending on the format of your screen.
There are a variety of design options available for editing and customizing your Canvas template. We’ll explain a little more about how these work below.
Selecting “Text” will prompt a window for you to type in anything you’d like to appear on your Canvas. Canvas has 32 Google fonts already available for you to choose from and there’s also an option to upload your own custom font to ensure your text looks brand.
Using the right-hand tool panel, you can customize how your text appears by changing the alignment/positioning, font type, color, and size. This also provides the ability for you to reduce the opacity of your text.
You can reposition any text by dragging and dropping it anywhere on your template. You can also resize the text field by pressing and holding your mouse click while moving your mouse toward the center of a text field, or expanding from the corners to make it larger.
You can upload photos and images directly into your Canvas using the Media Picker tool. Grab your brand logos or images from sources like Dropbox, or directly from your “Media Library.”
Top tip: Having your logos and any other brand elements saved in your Media Library will make it faster for you to create new Canvases.
You can reposition an image by dragging and dropping it anywhere on your template. You can also increase or decrease the opacity of your image.
Cropping & shaping images
You can also easily crop your images within Canvas, as well as easily set them into a shape.
You can easily add shapes to your design. The current shapes available include Circles, Rectangles, Squares, Triangles, and Pentagons. This is a great way to create an image background or badge, to help different elements stand out within your design.
You can change the color and size of shapes into any format you like and again, change the opacity of your shape.
Click and use the tool to change your background color for the template. You can also refer to websites such as https://htmlcolorcodes.com to quickly reference an HTML color code to ensure your background color remains on-brand.
Upload an image to use as your template background by clicking “Use Image”.
Lower panel features
As well as the right-hand toolbar there is also a lower panel features bar (see image below) that lets you take specific actions such as undoing and redoing an action and duplicating a layer or element.
Undo and redo actions: you can use these arrows to undo or redo any recent actions made to your template.
Duplicate content: select a piece of content (e.g. text, image, etc.) to duplicate the item.
iii) Delete content: select a piece of content (e.g. text, image, etc.) to delete the item.
Ability to cut, copy, and paste: similar to commands on your computer or alternative photo editing tools, you can right-click any item in the template to quickly cut, copy, and paste any item.
Here’s an overview of computer commands you can use in Canvas, respective to your platform (e.g. Windows or macOS):
cut – ctrl + x or cmd + x
copy – ctrl + c or cmd + c
paste – ctrl + v or cmd + v
Locking elements of your Canvas design for future templates.
As part of Canvas templates, we’ve made it possible for you to lock elements of the original design. This allows other team members or locations to reuse templates, without them changing the fundamental design elements of your brand.
To lock an item, simply select it and choose the padlock icon from the right-hand side menu. Template elements can be locked by any Manager or Admin within an account.
When a Creator selects that template to use, they can replace images or edit the text but won’t be able to move or change the positioning of the layer, thereby keeping all of your screen communications on brand.
Adding QR codes and links to your design
If you wish to share a website or an online form, you can attach this as a QR code to your design for very easy access for any smartphone users. The code comes in black or white, and can also be placed with a transparent background.
You should adjust it according to your screen size and how far the screen is from your viewers.
When a QR code is scanned, the statistics are collected in Metrics. Any QR code generated within Studio and it’s apps will appear here, according to which screen was scanned by the viewer.
Resizing your Canvas designs
With the Canvas app, you can also resize your graphics and designs at any time using the “Resize Canvas” button on the right-hand menu.
Once this is selected, you can change the resolution and also the sizing of your Canvas design. You can select from the options available from the drop-down menu or use “Custom” for your own sizing. You can review the brief animation below which shows an example of how you can resize your Canvas design.
Save your template by selecting the “Save” button in the top right-hand corner.
Now navigate to the “My Canvases” section and next to your new Canvas, Select the Option key and choose “Save As Template”. This will save the design as a Template that everyone within your Space will be able to access going forward.
Other users can now find that Template within the “Templates” section of the account. Once saved you’ll see that anytime you go to make further edits on one of your Canvas Templates you’ll see the blue “Template Editor” badge. This is a good reminder that any changes you make to this core Template will be reflected in all accounts within that Space so only do this if you want to make a permanent change.
To make changes to that Template, visit Templates > My Templates and select either “Edit Template” or “Duplicate” to edit or create a new version of the same template.
To create a new Canvas using that Template select “New Canvas”. Any edits to a New Canvas won’t change the core Template. When creating a new Canvas using a Template, ensure you rename your new Canvas by clicking on the header field. Otherwise, it’ll get difficult to tell different variations apart later when adding them to a Channel or Playlist.
Open the Canvas Templates Gallery
Within Canvas navigate to Templates > Gallery. This will open the Gallery of pre-designed templates that can be used to create your own versions.
Reuse a Gallery Template Within the Gallery select the Template you wish to use. You can also use the search bar to look for a specific template for example, all templates for classroom rules:
Once you have selected the template, click the settings panel and choose “New Canvas”. This will take the template and add it to your library under My Canvases. From here, you can make changes to the template such as adding your own logos, changing colors, or replacing items.
To edit an individual Canvas, simply select My Canvases and choose “Edit Canvas”. Here, any changes you make will automatically update the Canvas in any Channel, Playlist, or Screen context it is playing within.
Include tags to your canvases
You can now search your canvases by tag words! Select the template of your choice and create new tag names or add existing ones.
You can also filter your canvases by their associated tags. To do so, select the ‘tag’ option from the drop down list in ‘My Canvases’. Select the tag or tags of your choice. You can clear your tag selections from the right hand side option.
Users can set expiration dates for their canvases to display. This means expired content will not be displayed on your screen. This can be selected within the template on the right hand side under, ‘set availability’. If you wish to set up a canvas with no expiration date, please leave the ‘expire at’ option empty.
Follow our steps below for each method to display your Canvas creation on your digital screen:
Add to a Channel: select any Channel and schedule your Canvas to display across your screens. Click on “Add Content” to reveal the Media Picker, then select the Canvas app instance you’d like to use.
Add to a playlist: drag and drop the Canvas app instance into any playlist.