photoshop vs canva

Designing Tools: Photoshop vs Canva


Table of Contents

Adobe Photoshop and Canva both are great graphic design tools for designers. Both of them have their pros and cons that affect their usability from person to person. We are going to have a comparison of Photoshop vs Canva here and you can see for yourself which software meets your needs nicely.

photoshop and canva

Learning Curve


Photoshop is a full-fledged raster software with some of the most prominent features. This software is widely used for graphic designing, digital painting, photo manipulation, and many more things. Overall Photoshop is a complete solution in itself with hundreds of features that are updated on a regular basis.

All of these amazing features make the learning curve a bit steep for Photoshop users. You can have mastery of a subject in Photoshop but understanding each and every mechanic of Photoshop can take a very long time to learn.


Canva is relatively new in the designing market as it was founded in 2013. Being new doesn’t mean it lack tools and accessibility. Canva is a fully-fledged online tool with millions of users. Canva has a very wide array of templates and graphical solutions available for its users.

It mostly works on premade templates and there are literally thousands of them so if you are looking for some quick work done then Canva is definitely for you. As it is mostly based on templates, learning Canva is very easy and you can learn most of it within a week or sooner.



Photoshop is much costlier than Canva. An annual subscription to Photoshop only can cost you $240 whereas a monthly subscription to Photoshop costs $31.49 per month. Photoshop is a much better choice than Canva for those people who have good knowledge of it. Professional designers and creators should definitely go for Photoshop because it provides much more freedom of creation than Canva.


Canva’s base version is free for users with hundreds of thousands of templates to choose from. It also has a Canva Pro version that costs $120 per year. In that matter, Canva Pro is relatively cost-effective than Photoshop with its annual subscription costing half as much as Photoshop. On top of that Canva Pro updates its library with hundreds of designing elements added on a daily basis.

Targeted Audience


This software is mostly targeted towards professional designers who are looking to do some serious works from the scratch. Photoshop is not free to use and If you are serious about it then you should definitely go for it. In the field of designing it is the first choice of people who are looking forward to designing as a full-time career. Photoshop is more versatile and is loved by a much larger audience than Canva.


Canva is a very simple design platform. As Canva is mostly based on pre-made designs and templates, it can be easily used by individuals who are not accustomed to professional designs or by non-designers. Canva is loved by social media workers as they can create capturing designs for social media within a matter of minutes.

Offline vs Online Needs


After installing photoshop you can use it offline. Some features like Adobe Creative Cloud can require an online connection to import some data. But you can use Photoshop offline. There is a catch that your PC should have the required specifications to work effectively on Photoshop otherwise the application will suffer from heavy lags or frequent crashes. There is also a miniature version of Photoshop known as Photoshop Express which is available for mobile devices and is an online-only platform. It doesn’t have many features as Photoshop but is still pretty good for the mobile platform.


Canva also has applications for PC, smartphones, and tablets on top of that you can use Canva on a compatible web browser but all of these require an active internet connection permanently. You cannot take the services of Canva on an offline basis. Being an online platform means that you can use it on a web browser of a low-end PC without worrying about the performance of the software. But it also has a drawback that by losing internet connection you can lose some of the work that you are actively doing.

Storage Options


RAW files of photoshop known as .psd can be saved offline on your computer or online through a Creative Cloud subscription. A regular Creative Cloud subscription offers you up to 100 GB of cloud storage with Enterprise plans that can give you storage options of 1 TB and 2 TB. 100 GB is enough to cloud storage for Photoshop files on top of that you can save your files offline on your computer so there is hardly any need for enterprise plans only to increase your storage.


Canva offers up to 5 GB of cloud storage for free users. On top of that, you can create an unlimited amount of designs without worrying about storage. The Canva Pro account can offer you up to 100 GB of cloud storage whereas the enterprise version of Canva that costs $30 per person per month offers unlimited cloud storage to save your files! The only drawback of Canva is that you cannot download RAW files. Only finished products can be downloaded whereas you have freedom of selection in Photoshop.

Types of Designs


You can make literally anything on Photoshop. It is not limited to a selection of design products. What you can think & got necessary skills for that, you can make that on Photoshop. Photoshop is the most versatile designing software available in the market and there are literally no competitors of Photoshop in designing. The tools provided by Photoshop and the output that you can get are much more accurate than any other software. Some designs that you can create on Photoshop are:-

  • Mockups
  • Infographics
  • Logos
  • Digital Painting
  • Matte Painting
  • Photobashing
  • Web Designing
  • Branding

Above are a few features out of hundreds of features that you can create on Photoshop.


Canva is not as versatile but it still has a good amount of features that you can create. What Canva lacks in features or selection of tools it makes up for it by thousands of templates and stock footage. Canva has also acquired Pixabay and Pexels that are one of the largest stock image and video libraries available on the internet and grant direct access to the users of these platforms. Some of the most popular uses of Canva are:-

  • Invitation Creation
  • Social Media Graphics
  • Youtube Thumbnail
  • Business Cards
  • Stickers
  • Small Animations
  • Brand Kit

Even though all these features can be created on Photoshop but for those who lack designing knowledge or looking for a quick and more affordable method have Canva as their primary choice over Photoshop.

Photoshop vs Canva Verdict

In the battle of Photoshop vs Canva, there is a very close competition between the two. Those who have knowledge of Photoshop and wanted to create new designs can opt for Photoshop. Those who don’t have much knowledge in the field of designing can opt for Canva as it is mostly based on intriguing templates.

Photoshop provides more features than Canva but is more time-consuming than Canva whereas Canva provides fewer designing features than Photoshop but is also available for free with some restrictions and Canva Pro is also much more cost-effective than Photoshop.

Canva can work on a web browser and its application is also available for PC, mobile devices, and tablets but it is an online-only designing platform. Photoshop can be used offline also and is available for PC only. A newer version of Photoshop requires a good configuration of PC to run flawlessly.

We can see that both Designing platforms provide a wide array of options to choose from. One is more cost-efficient whereas the other has more power-packed tools. It all comes down to the choice. If you want to learn something new and want to have a firm grasp of designing as a subject then Photoshop is a great choice for you or if you want to save time and want some basic to intermediate level of designs then Canva is a great choice.

If you are thinking of any other platform then please tell us in the comments section below and we will try our best to give you adequate and accurate information for that software.

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