How to blur images and backgrounds in Canva (2023 edition)
How to blur in Canva?
Once in a while, we need to blur images or objects to put specific things into focus.
Maybe you took a photo of someone who didn’t give you their permission and therefore need to blur their faces.
Maybe you want to share some documents with private details and want to blur the sensitive information.
Maybe you just want to boost the look of your images and your overall design skills with some blur.
The good news is all this can be done in an instant in Canva as long as you know how.
This article is a step-by-step guide on how and when to use the blur tool in Canva in different ways for a maximum professional look.
Do I need a Canva Pro Account?
No. While the pro version will make a few things easier, I’ve managed to put together a guide with only free ways to achieve the results you want.
However, the guide also contains a single example of how to blur the background using the pro version, but you certainly don’t need a pro version to get the results below.
How to Blur an Image in Canva
To blur an image in Canva, click your image and select Edit Image in the top toolbar followed by clicking on Adjust.
By doing so you’ll open up the adjustment panel as shown below.
In the panel, you can drag the Blur Slider to the left or the right depending on how much blur effect you want.
If you drag it to the right the image will get blurred, and usually, everything from 4 to 8 will be enough to blur any image.
Below I’ve dragged the Blur Slider 5 points to the right, and it’s definitely enough.
If you do the opposite and drag the Blur Slider to the left, your image will get sharper. But too much sharpness will ruin your image totally.
In the example below, I’ve dragged the Blur Slider 10 points to the left.
I recommend staying with a blur between 4 and 8, and it also just looks awesome, when you apply text as the top layer to the image.
How to Blur the Background of an Image in Canva
You might think, what if I only want the background to be blurry, is that possible? Yes, it is.
Here is how you do it. Start by duplicating (copy and paste) your image on to the original one.
Then click the top image and select Edit Image followed by a single click on BG Remover, which stands for Background Remover.
Obviously, this tool will remove the background leaving you with only, in this case, the people in the front.
To blur only the background, I’ll select the original image, and use the previous method to blur the whole image.
Afterward, I’ll drag the people (with no background) on top of the blurred image until it fits perfectly.
Voila, you just blurred the background of an image. A powerful design-move to know.
The bad news is that to use the inbuilt BG remover function in Canva, you’ll need to have a pro version, but there’s a solution to this if you don’t want to buy the pro version.
Instead, upload your photo to photo to remove.bg, and this software will remove the background for free.
Then download the image and upload it to Canva, and you’ve now successfully removed the background without using the BG remover function in Canva.
How to Blur Specific Parts of an Image
What if you want to control the exact elements of an image to blur? The Blur app in Canva makes that process really simple.
Click your image, select Edit Image, and then scroll down until you see the Blur App to the left.
If you’ve never used it before you might have to scroll almost to the bottom to find it. You can also use the search bar to search for it.
Click on the Blur App, and then Blur, which will make a white circle appear. Left-Click and hold as you hover over the area or object you want to blur.
Voila, you just blurred a part of an image in Canva.
If you are not satisfied with how the blur looks, you can adjust it by dragging the three sliders to the left.
– Intensity Slider: This one determines the amount of blur in the area you selected. In other words, it’s transparency.
– Spread: The spread will tell you how far the blur will reach. If you increase it, the blur will stretch itself out to a larger area.
– Brush Size: This is the size of your brush (the white circle) you use to blur a part of an image.
The Blur App is Weird
Be aware that if you blur an area, and then adjust the intensity, this will not affect the area you already blurred.
Instead, you should adjust the intensity, spread, and brush settings before you blur anything.
A good idea would be to do a test stroke after you set the three parameters, and then hit Control + z (Windows) or Command + z (Mac) when you are satisfied.
Also, the intensity doesn’t work as one would think.
Well, if you increase the intensity, the object obviously gets blurrier, but if you increase it to 100, it becomes more see-through, which isn’t what we want.
How to Blur Text in Canva
We might be in possession of a document with some sensitive information that we want to blur for who knows what purposes.
To blur text in Canva, we make use of the same technique as before.
That means, we upload our document to Canva, click it, and then we select Edit Image.
When that’s done, we now choose the Blur App.
Next, we hit the Blur button, and Left-Click and hold while we hover over the text we want to blur. When done, we hit apply, and we’ve now blurred the text.
Wrapping it all up
If it’s your first time using Canva to blur faces, text, or similar, it can be overwhelming, but the four methods above should be enough to get you started.
Also, remember that if you are on the road, you can quickly create a new design from the free app that Canva offers to smartphones.
Here they also have some advanced options you can use to blur images.
In the next sections, you can read answers to related and frequently asked questions.
Can I use blur my own images on mobile devices?
The answer is yes and no. Yes because you have the blur option on your mobile device, where you can blur a whole image.
No, because you don’t have the blur app that lets you blur a part of a picture when using the free Canva app on your phone.
How many blurry images can I make a day with the free Canva version?
All the images you can make. There’s no limit to how many times a day you use the blur settings on an image or object.
Can I use Canva Images for Commercial use?
You can actually, as long as you edit the image a bit.
That can be by applying a gaussian blur to an entire image, changing the color, inserting figures, etc.
You just need to have done something to it in order to make it your own.
But if you just want to use an image for your social media platforms you can just use the photo without doing any edits (also if you only have a free account).
How do I highlight text in my Canva Design?
This a question I get so often, that I’ve already made an entire article covering the easiest ways to highlight text in Canva.
Can I blur multiple parts of an image?
Of course. You are in control and can choose which part of your image to blur and also how many parts your want to blur with the blur feature.
How do I change the background color of an image?
To do this you’ll first need to have a transparent background, which can be achieved using the BG remover (or remove. bg).
When you’ve removed the background of the image, you now need to edit the background color of your canvas.
By default, you’ll have a white background, but this can be changed by clicking on the background and then selecting the square with colors in the top toolbar.
Pick your color, and you’ve changed the color of the background.
What’s the best way to blur in Canva?
There are no best ways to blur in Canva since it all depends on what you want to blur.
However, a rule of thumb would be not to combine different blurs, since it will just make things look messy.
Will blurring an image affect the image quality?
No, it will not.
The blurry apps and blurry functions will apply a little blur to the areas you want, without affecting the image quality.
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