There are many amazing things you can do with Google Drawings. Google Drawings sometimes lags behind its more famous siblings. But when Docs, Sheets, and Slides get attention, the Google Drive image editor also has a creative side.
Google Drawings is not Google’s primary productivity tool. So, focus on documents, sheets and presentations. When you click Create on the Google Drive home page, you can find more options besides the ones listed by clicking More at the bottom. Also, we saw the usefulness of Google Forms. Now is the time to appreciate the versatility of Google Drawings.
So, Google Drawings is the latest version of all Google Drive tools. It’s not a full-fledged image editor like MS Paint. Also, it’s a real-time collaboration application. It’s basically an interactive whiteboard. In its most advanced state, it can do much more. Let’s look at some creative uses.
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Table of Contents
Use It for Collaborative Post-It Notes-Google Drawings
Google Drawings can be used as an interactive whiteboard where you can add PostIt notes. So, start your own, then use the URL to share your thoughts with others. The aforementioned post-it virtual memo was created in 5 minutes using shapes, Google fonts, and pin image searches.
Also, quick Google Drawings Board sharing combined with Hangouts Chat is an easy solution when you can’t be in the same place at the same time. Any team member can add comments and other PostIt notes to the virtual office wall.
Create Your Own Graphic Organizers
A graphical organizer is a chart that helps you organize information visually. Also, some of these are called concept maps, entity relationship diagrams, and mind maps.
Moreover, you can use the Graphic Organizer to view your thoughts from a bird’s-eye view. For example, spider diagrams can be used to group ideas, flowcharts can be useful for sequencing processes, and fishbone diagrams can be used to explain cause and effect.
You can use the template library to create shortcuts (such as flowchart templates) or create your own from scratch. Google Drawings has shapes, colors, and fonts to help you quickly create memorable spatial structures. The diagram above is a simple spider diagram that shows the shortcuts you can use to create a graphical organizer.
Design an Infographic-Google Drawings
Creating infographics using Google Drawings is one of our favorite Google Drawings tricks. If you have ideas and data to back up, you’re half way there. There are many amazing things you can do with Google Drawings.
These two key elements of a great infographic can be supported by shapes, images, text, charts, graphs, tables and colors to enhance the visual impact. Also, link your data to external resources via hyperlinks to create more dynamic experiences.
To get started:
Take a look at the data that will go into your infographic. Resize the picture canvas to a long rectangle. Alternatively, go to File > Page Setup and enter the appropriate page size.
Also, use background color or find free textures for backgrounds. If you have selected a texture image, go to Insert > Image to load the texture file. Scales the texture to fit the background. To set the background color, right-click > Background.
Moreover, create graphics by combining and grouping different shapes. You can create shapes from behind the screen and then drag and drop them onto the canvas. Grouped graphics can be colored with one click. Google Drawings includes Snap to Grid and Snap to Guides so you can align objects on the Google Drawings grid and draw more accurately at the same size. Choose View > Snap To > Grid/Guidelines.
Make Custom Graphics for Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides
This is perhaps the most obvious use for Google Drawings. The cheapest tool for inserting custom graphics into Google Drive documents via the web clipboard. Here are a few things you can do:
- Create your own reusable photo library.
- Create your own vector marker images.
- Set up digital signatures for email.
Copying a drawing to another file creates a copy of the original drawing. Changes made to the original or copy are not automatically applied to the other side.
Screen Design With Wireframes
Wireframes are the blueprint for any screen design. Think of a simple shape with no color or wrinkles. It helps designers focus on how content is laid out or how prototypes work. For simplicity, collaboration, and accessibility, Google Drawings stands out from the rest.
Also, Google Drawings makes it easy to create your own set of wireframes. Wireframe kits can be configured with basic starter blocks for any design. Leave items in the margins (space next to the canvas) for quick access in new projects.
Understand Relationships With Database Schemas
Building a database diagram using Google Drawings wasn’t the original idea. The web development team is demonstrating this simple Google Drawings hack.
So, a database schema is a logical grouping of objects such as tables, views, stored procedures, and similar objects. Also, describes the structure of a database and the relationships between the objects within it.
Google Drawings can be used to show relationships between entities. Add to that real-time collaboration and you have a useful diagramming tool.
Annotating an image helps to express the essence of the image. Again, you can choose from a variety of web annotation tools. Google Pictures is an excellent choice.
Easily annotate images in Google Photos.
- Use Print Screen to take screenshots or upload images directly to Google Drawings.
- Also, use the Crop tool (Format > Crop Image) on the toolbar to select the section you want to display.
- Use the Shape and Line tools to select points on the image. Google Drawings has different shapes and arrows to help you style these annotations.
- Insert text comments (using text boxes) and format the font, style, and size. Also try Shape > Leaders.
- Adjust the color by selecting Format > Image Options.
- Choose File > Load As for the finished PNG or JPEG file. Also, you can share annotated images via Google Drive.
Create Hotspots on Images-Google Drawings
Imagine a world map. Clicking on each country will take you to that country’s Wikipedia page. Think of an idea. Break down your idea and connect each piece to external data to clarify all aspects to better explain it.
Also, an image map or image hotspot allows you to convey a lot of information in one picture or pictures. Google Drawings makes it easy to create a neat image map like the one above.
To get started, paste or draw an image on a blank Google Photos canvas.
- Choose Insert > Line > Polyline. Use the polyline tool to outline the hot area.
- Choose Insert > Link (or Ctrl + K) and add an external web page or other Google Drive document to the Hyperlink field.
- Set the shape and line color to transparent so that the polygon boundary area disappears.
- You can share pictures, embed them in your blog, or download them as PDF files.
Make Decision Flow Charts
Decision flow charts are used in a variety of industries including programming, science, engineering, and even business and finance. Also, organizations use flowcharts to make important business decisions that affect the entire company.
The ability to create flowcharts that can be easily modified and updated is essential, and Google Drawings is a good fit. All standard shapes for creating flowcharts can be found by clicking the shape icon at the top of the drawing window. When you select a shape, the flowchart-specific shapes are displayed at the bottom of the window.
Also, when you hover over the shape, a small pop-up window will appear telling you which part of the decision tree the shape is for. This is useful if you are new to creating flowcharts. Creating simple flowcharts, such as programming flowcharts, is incredibly quick and easy. There is also a list of standard charts that you can insert directly into your drawing.
Choose the Insert menu and choose Chart. A list of chart types to choose from opens. Choose a type and browse through a sub-list with many charts to choose from.
Create Interactive Graphics With Links-Google Drawings
Another very creative way to use Google Drawings is to insert a link into your image. This is also called adding hotspots to the image. So, Google Drawings makes this very easy.
For example, if you are a teacher and you want to create an image where students can click on each state and visit the Wikipedia page for that state, the process is very simple. You can use the procedure in the last section to insert photos from the web to transfer maps of the United States to Google Photos.
Also, use the shape icon in the menu to draw a shape around the area of the image you want to convert to a URL. Then, with that shape selected, select the shape color and text color and set both to transparent. Without deselecting the shape, select the link icon from the menu and paste the URL you want to use for that link into the image.
Also, selecting Apply will now activate image areas covered by invisible shapes. You can repeat this process for each area of the image you want to turn into an interactive URL hotspot.
Make Funny Facebook Memes-Google Drawings
Have you ever seen all of these funny images with social media captions? Would you like to try making it yourself? Google Drawings makes downloading images quick and easy, especially from the web.
So, follow the procedure outlined in the first section of this article to transfer the appropriate image from the web to Google Picture Canvas. Then place a callout over the figure. Select the shape icon from the menu, choose Callouts, then select one of the callout boxes you want to use for your meme.
Adjust the border, fill color, and text inside the leader box until you achieve the desired result. Now, you can download this image in PNG or JPG format and share it on Twitter or Facebook and make all your friends and family smile.
Create Organizers and Planners For Your Life
Google Photos is the perfect tool to organize your ideas and plan your strategy. It is the best tool for all of the following reasons.
- Works with other Google services, so you can include email, Google Docs and Google Sheets, and more.
- Share and collaborate on drawings with others to plan drawings.
- All shapes and connectors needed to create organizers and planners are included.
- You can hyperlink to external resources.
- Share your development as a template so others can use it.
Also, it helps you create and organize all kinds of documents using the same shapes, lines, arrows and other images available in Google Drawings. For example, the following Google Drawings Timeline template from Ditch That Notebook allows you to place and organize events by date in a visual timeline.
Also, you’ll find a list of fifteen other free Google Drawing manager templates at the Ditch That Textbook website.
The following designs are few other organizers Google Drawing designs to ease you get begin:
- Main idea and supporting details: Grow supporting signal for your ideas
- 5 Senses diagram: Insert to your journal for trailing sensory logs to the entries
- Mind Map template: Establish ideas through linked rings and lines that expand outward
- Bubble Map template: Like to a mind map with a different coloring structure
- Cause and Effect: Form problem-solving and find the root source.
Make Posters and Flyers-Google Drawings
Google Drawings is one of the best web resources for creating high-quality, professional-looking posters and flyers. If you can’t believe it, check out this job poster created by people at Instruction Tech Talk.
What makes it so effective for this purpose is that Google Drawings has all the features you can use to do this. These include:
- Creative background images available for download from the Internet.
- Unique fonts
- Ability to resize and rotate fonts and images.
- Ability to resize canvas to desired size for poster or flyer.
- Create intricate designs and patterns using the zoom function.
Of course, the ability to export posters or flyers as PDF or SVG files means you are not limited by your printer’s printing capabilities. Just take the file to your local Staples or Office Depot and print your poster or flyer there.
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A Canvas for Your Ideas-Google Drawings
As with any drawing tool, exploring the possibilities available here is half the fun. From explaining multi-step processes to collective brainstorming. The often-forgotten Google Drive drawing service could become your favorite new creative web app.
Also, a tool like Microsoft Visio may be more convenient for working with more complex diagrams, but few tools beat Google Drawings for its best feature: real-time collaboration at a fantastic price for free. So, what are you going to love?
You Can Use Google Drawings for Everything
As you can see, Google Drawings isn’t just for drawing simple drawings. Used for a variety of purposes. Depending on your creativity, you can use Google Drawings in many ways at work and at home.