Visual media can come in many different forms: photos, animations, GIFs, videos, graphic designs. You might know how to make many of these – photos and videos are simple to take with your phone, and even GIFs can be recorded quickly online.

But not everyone knows how to create other types of content, especially more complex types like graphic designs, which can be used for anything from a promotional poster to a profile picture overlay for social media. In this article, I’m going to walk you through an easy, intuitive way to create your own custom, complex geometric designs, all for free and online. Here’s how to get started:

  1. Create a Blank Canvas in the Kapwing Studio
  2. Add and Arrange Shapes
  3. Add Filters and Other Layers
  4. Export and Download

Step 1: Create a Blank Canvas in the Kapwing Studio

To make a geometric design from scratch, you’ll need a blank background to start with. Head over to Kapwing.com in your browser and select the Start Editing button. This will take you to the Kapwing Studio, where you can add, edit, import, and arrange all the parts of your geometric design. Unless you plan on editing an existing geometric design that you have saved, choose the option that says Start with a Blank Canvas.

Step 2: Add and Arrange Shapes

Now it’s time to start on the main portion of your design project: the shapes. In the Studio, the easiest way to add a shape is to select “Elements” in the upper toolbar and choose among the shapes listed. For me, the triangle, circle, rectangle, and line are the most useful. With any of these shapes, you have a bunch of customization and editing options: you can change their color, dimensions, opacity, outline, position, rotation, and layer order.

One of the most important things to do when you create a geometric design in the Kapwing Studio is to avoid working with only one piece at a time. Instead, you can copy, rotate, and resize whole sections of your design by holding down the Command key (on Mac) or Control key (on a PC) and selecting multiple different shape layers on the canvas. You’ll see all the shape layers highlighted as a group which you can move, resize, and rotate all at once.

For some fancier shape types, you might need to use other image files. One of the most useful tools you can use is the Image search tool in the Studio – just select Images in the upper toolbar, enter a query like “silver hexagon PNG,” and choose the perfect image from the results. I like looking for shapes and designs that are already transparent PNG images, but if you can’t find the right thing with no background, select the Erase tool in the right-hand editing toolbar and remove the background with the Magic Wand tool.

Step 3: Add Filters and Other Layers

Obviously the shapes are the most important components of a great geometric design, but you might want to refine your design even more. With filters and semi-transparent layers, you can add greatly to the aesthetic of your design. In the Studio, there are two main ways to accomplish this: adding semi-transparent layers to the top of some parts or all of your design, or uploading semi-transparent effect layers from the web using the image search tool. Here's an example I made with a semi-transparent blue overlay, plus a simple effect I added by just searching for “snowflakes png”:

Before hitting the red Export button, consider what you’re planning to use your design for: if you want to use it in a fairly large location like a computer wallpaper, make sure your output dimensions are set to a large aspect ratio: something like 2560x1440 tends to work well.

Step 4: Export and Download

Once your design looks just the way you want and you’ve edited your canvas to perfection, it’s time to export it. Click the red Export button in the upper right-hand corner of the Studio window and give Kapwing just a couple seconds to process your image. Once it’s ready, click the Download button on the right side of the screen (or under the image, in mobile browsers) and it will be saved directly to your device.

I hope this article helps you unleash your inner graphic designer and compose a professional-level geometric design to use for anything from a promotional poster to a profile picture overlay for social media. If you’re interested in more design tutorials, product updates, and content ideas, check out our YouTube channel Kapwing App. And while you’re here, take a look at these related articles on digital design:

How to Make an iPhone Mockup Online
How to Design and Create Podcast Cover Art
How to Make Aesthetic Poem Art Online
How to Make Custom App Icons and Widgets