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Something's not working

Something's not working - Downloading

There are a number of reasons why a design may fail to download. This section will help you diagnose your download problem and get your designs back on track.

  • I’m getting an error message when downloading

    After hours of working on a design, you’re finally ready to hit that download button. Upon clicking download an error message suddenly pops up. You’re unable to download your work!

    Different error messages mean different things. Below we discuss what each message means and what the solution in each case is.

    Publishing hit a snag

    This error message usually happens when there is an ongoing system maintenance or update in Canva. The first thing you can do is to check our status page to see if there is any ongoing issue with Canva.

    If there’s no current known issue on our page, it may be because an element is corrupted or an uploaded image failed to upload correctly. You can try refreshing the page, re-uploading the element/image, or replacing it with another element/image.

    It’s also possible that the design is carrying a large image and is taking the system longer than usual to download. Since Canva is an online design tool, the larger the design and file size the greater the chance for downloading errors. To avoid this, we recommend splitting your design into multiple parts and then merging them after download. For a thorough guide to this, check out our Managing pages in your design article.

    If this doesn’t help, you may contact us by clicking the Report an issue – Downloading article at the bottom of this page.

    This issue affects me

    The publishing elves have failed

    This error message comes up when downloading designs that have too many elements or heavy images. The design could also have reached the maximum page number of 30.

    To resolve this, split your design into two files or download it in batches or per pages in range. You can easily merge your design back together after downloading by using a tool like PDF merge. For a thorough guide to this, check out our Managing pages in your design article.

    This issue affects me
  • My design looks blurry

    Blurry is in the eye of the beholder! The section below helps you get the best results when downloading your designs. Learn some tips and tricks to get sharper images, clear and crisp text and the most professional results in a breeze. There are several factors that can affect the quality of a downloaded design.

    Quality of uploaded media

    Images uploaded for printed projects should be in high resolution to ensure the best quality print. Using low quality images in the design could result in pixelated images or fuzzy text.

    To make sure images in your design is print quality:

    1. Keep your images large when taking photos.
    2. Avoid resizing or enlarging your image as this often results to quality loss.
    3. Upload high-resolution images in 300 dpi.
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    File type

    A design’s resolution is affected by the file format you use. Each file format has it’s own strengths – so be sure to choose one that fits your purpose.

    JPG is useful for storing photographs at small file sizes. It’s usually chosen for Web use because it’s compressed but also produces the lowest resolution designs.

    PNG is a good choice for storing line drawings, text, and iconic graphics at a small file size. It’s also a common choice for use on the Web.

    PDF:Standard is a good choice for viewing text heavy documents as the text does not blur as you increase the zoom on your PDF.

    PDF:For Print is the only the file format which prints at professional print quality, which is 300 Dots Per Inch (DPI). Use this file format when printing.

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    Uploading designs to social media

    Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter compresses images that are uploaded to their sites. This may appear to make the uploaded image appear blurrier than preferred. To achieve the best results when uploading to social media, try these tips and tricks:

    • Download your design using the PNG file type
    • Double the dimensions of your design

    Canva for Work users can resize existing designs using the custom dimensions or magic resize features. Standard Canva users can create designs with custom dimensions from scratch by selecting the Use custom dimensions button on the top right corner of the Canva home page.

    Using the generic document type Social media with dimensions of 800px x 800px when attempting to upload to Instagram, may cause the design to blur once uploaded. The dimensions for the Instagram document type are 1080px x 1080px. Using a smaller document type causes the design to stretch.

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    When using online printing tools

    To print your design in the highest quality, it’s important to ensure the design is downloaded with the right file format. Selecting the PDF: for print file format will download your design at 300 Dots Per Inch (DPI), which is professional print quality.

    Often online printing stores have a preview screen which displays the image prior to downloading. In our experience, preview screens often display the design at a lower quality than they will upon printing.

    If the design still appears blurry after printing, kindly consult the online printing website used.

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    When a filter is applied to an image

    Your design may sometimes appear blurry when a filter is applied to an image in your design. To check if the filter is what’s causing the blurry download, try removing the filter to see if the image becomes clearer without it.

    This issue affects me

    Downloading with a retina screen

    Retina screens have a greater number of pixels than a regular screen. The more pixels in your screen, the smaller the downloaded design will appear. This is because the computer monitor is packing more and more pixels into a smaller space.

    Many retina screens automatically combat the issue of the small downloaded design by automatically zooming in on the downloaded design. This often has the appearance of making the design appear blurry. To avoid this, increase the number of pixels in your designs by at least twice or define the dimensions of your design in physical dimensions – inches or cm.

    Canva for Work users can resize their existing designs using the custom dimensions or magic resize features. Standard Canva users can create designs with custom dimensions from scratch by selecting the Use custom dimensions button on the top right hand corner of the Canva home page.

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  • Part of my design is cut off when downloading

    On some occasions, images in your design gets cut off upon export. Find out how to fix or prevent different kinds of errors below.

    Images get cut upon download

    There are times when images on designs get cut after downloading.

    Here’s what you can do to remedy this:

    1. Click on the image that was cut off and click the Crop option on your toolbar.
    2. Resize the ends of the image to meet the edges of the page by using the anchors found on each corner of the photo.
    3. Crop the image by repositioning the image to show the areas that need to be visible.
    4. Click File then Save.
    5. Click Download.
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    Large designs with a filter applied

    Images may appear to be cut off, leaving a large white space in large designs types where a filter has been applied to the affected image.

    To resolve this issue simply remove the filter applied to the affected image. You can also shrink the size of your design below 4096 pixels x 4096 pixels.

    Canva for Work users can resize existing designs using the custom dimensions or magic resize features. Standard Canva users can create designs with custom dimensions from scratch by selecting the Use custom dimensions button on the top right hand corner of the Canva home page.


    This issue affects me

    Designs with crop marks and bleed

    On rare occasions, downloading a design with crop marks and bleed can cause a white space to appear on the sides of your design. Unfortunately this is a known issue and our engineers are working incredibly hard to ensure this issue is resolved in the not too distant future.

    Meanwhile, you can download the design again without selecting to use crop marks and bleed. To make sure the download has no crop marks and bleed, in the Canva editor click Download then Options. Check that the “Crop marks and bleed” box is not selected.

    This issue affects me

    Multi-page designs with overlapping pages

    Overlapping pages may cause a design to get cut off when downloaded. When there are overlapping pages, the top of each page is covered by the bottom part of the previous page’s design. Multi-page download results in page breaks being applied incorrectly.

    To prevent this, ensure that all the elements in your design are within the editor’s white canvas. Avoid overlapping pages to make sure designs do not get cut off upon download.

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  • Lines, texts or images have moved during downloading

    Different browsers may export different lines or texts differently. If any element in your design appears to have moved or shrunk during export, try viewing and downloading your design in a different browser.

    If this does not resolve the issue, please try the following steps:

    1. Refresh your page by logging out then log back into your Canva account.
    2. Zoom in on the design and view to 100% to see if all elements and text are in place. Re-align if needed.
    3. Make sure there is stable internet connection to make sure that all your design changes (including text alignment) will be saved completely.
    4. Clear browser history, cookies and cache as accumulated cookies can cause trouble sometimes.
    5. Check if the elements in your designs are grouped. Highlight the elements in your design and make sure the Group button is not clicked.
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    The font in use gets an error

    Some types of font are more prone to errors than others. This problem is more common in script fonts and uploaded fonts. Importing text from other documents like MS Word may also cause the text to export incorrectly. This is because some fonts (e.g. Arial, Courier New) in other programs are not supported by Canva.

    Downloading fonts can also fail when an uploaded font is used in a design. There are technical issues with some font formats and the quality of the file. Not all fonts are created equal, and many (especially free ones) have errors that will affect the downloaded quality of the design.

    This issue affects me

    You have downloaded with crop marks and bleed

    We are currently aware of the issue that’s causing elements to move when downloading with crop marks and bleed. To resolve this, download your design without crop marks and bleed. Rest assured our team is working on a more permanent fix for this issue.

    This issue affects me

  • Special characters are not downloading correctly

    Canva fully supports languages that use the basic Latin character set: the twenty-six letters of the Latin alphabet, numbers, and punctuation.

    Our text tool uses a variety of typefaces, some of which support extended characters like accent marks necessary for many languages like Spanish and French. If you are designing in a language that needs accent marks, try using a typeface like Helveticish or Times Neue Roman. Canva also supports Hindi when using the Noto Sans font.

    If you’re designing in a language that makes heavy use of accent marks, it’s important to download a preview of the design and check that all the text looks right. Even if the text looks fine in Canva, the typeface will not export correctly if your chosen typeface does not support the characters. Try selecting a different typeface like those recommended above.

    For now, our text tool is unable to support languages that use Cyrillic, Chinese characters, or other languages that require characters beyond the Latin alphabet. We are also unable to support special characters such as emojis or emoticons.

    Don’t worry though, we hear our international friends loud and clear. We certainly have exciting news to share on this topic soon, so please stay tuned.

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  • Watermarks are still on my design

    Premium elements appear with watermarks – a criss-cross pattern superimposed on top of images to protect the element’s copyright holder.

    To remove the watermarks, you have to purchase and download your design. Your downloaded file will have the watermarks removed, though they’ll still appear when viewed on Canva.

    To remove watermarks on a design you wish to share to social media, first download and pay for the design and then upload it directly to social media.

    This issue affects me
  • Report an issue - Downloading

    • Screenshots are really helpful to help diagnose your issue. Feel free to upload one if required.
      Accepted file types: jpg, jpeg, gif, png, pdf.
    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.