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Photos we don’t accept

We’ve set a higher bar in terms of NSFW content than most sites as Canva works with many schools. Here are examples of what not to include in your portfolio.

Nudity and sexual content

Avoid images which show:

  • genitalia, pubic hair, unclothed buttocks, female nipples, and explicit sexual positions
  • implied nudity with a seductive context
note: Implied nudity with a medical context is fine. Conceptual images representing private parts may be accepted.

Violence and gore

Images with subjects that Canva considers violent and upsetting include:

  • Gore (i.e. too much blood, open wounds, internal organs, etc.)
  • Suicide or suicidal attempts (i.e. noose around the neck, blade against the wrist, etc.)
  • Any weapon pointed at an individual in the photo or to the viewer
  • Consumption of illegal drugs


Images of famous people and characters are considered editorial. This also includes crowd scenes that appear to have been shot in public or people who are clearly NOT models who are there for a photo shoot.

Visible brands

Images that show any brands or logos — whether as text, icon or the actual product.

Composites and collages

Avoid submitting images arranged in grids or those which appear in a scrapbook layout. We want users to have the flexibility to use them in their designs.

Digital text

Avoid adding digital text to your images which limits usability and confuses the user. Don’t make the text as the primary (or near the primary) subject of your image.

Rasterized illustrations

Rasterized illustrations are not editable in Canva. This limits its usability as we need illustrations to have interactive abilities.

No specific subject or uninteresting subject

These are images which do not have identifiable subjects or purpose. We also do not accept random shots.

Technical quality issues

These are photos that are not artistically blurred, contain too much noise, or have very dark or dull colors. This also includes photos that are over-edited, heavily filtered, or show too much contrast. Images shot at odd angles are also not accepted.

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