How to Create a Brilliant Background

Anna Guerrero
Anna Guerrero

Crafted through a combination of clever image choices and enhancing techniques – brilliant backgrounds help your designs shine!

It’s a great feat to create a wonderful background, but it’s also important to know how to balance them with other elements.

Here we show you how to do just that. If you’re bursting to try these techniques yourself, don’t forget to try the incredibly easy tutorial linked at the bottom of this blog.

01. Choose background images with empty space


In design, empty space in images are referred to as ‘copy space’. It provides a great opportunity for your text (or ‘copy’) to be placed for maximum readability.

Images with ample copy space are a great option for backgrounds, as they allow text to be read clearly while still providing an aspect of visual interest.

02. Add a transparent shape


Bright, detailed backgrounds can be a great feature element for your designs. But be warned, they may become too busy when combined with text.

One way to combat this clash is to layer a transparent shape over your background. This will allow your text to be placed with purpose and retain its clarity.

03. Add a border to create focus


Borders can help focus your content over a detailed background. If your text is still feeling a little lost, make sure there is a strong contrast between your background image and your text color – as seen in the design above.

04 . Add a transparent icon


If you don’t have much text to fill your design, sometimes it can end up feeling a little lost in your composition. Try adding a transparent icon, like the leaf seen above, to fill empty space in a clever and creative way.

05 . Crop a textured image


A clever way to use images as a background is to crop them so that their textures shine. See how the ocean ripples in the image to the right have been cropped to create an original, textured background.

The easiest way to crop images in Canva is to place them in a grid, and stretch them out to create a new focus.

Feeling inspired by these beautiful backgrounds? Create your own using similar techniques in the super easy, interactive tutorial below!