Working with Google Drawings

Have you been looking for a way to create your own images and then be able to access them from anywhere in the world? If so, Google Drawings is your solution.

Google Drawings in a program in Google Drive, an online resource that allows users to create, edit, share, collaborate, and save work by using the various programs which it provides. Google Drive has almost all of the same capabilities as Microsoft Office. The best part about Google Drive programs, though, is that they can easily be shared between as few as two people, allowing people in different places to collaborate on the same program and work at the same time. As one of these programs, Google Drawings holds all of these features.

Before I was very familiar with Google Drawings, I was nervous that it would take me a long time to learn how to use. Technology tends to overwhelm me when I am unfamiliar with it; therefore, I appreciated the user-friendly formatting of Google Drive when I first began using it.

If you are familiar with using Microsoft Office programs, using Google Drawings will be a breeze. When I first started using it, I immediately felt as if I were using a combination between Microsoft Word and PowerPoint because it gives the user a blank page with which all of the features are to be used. I learned about all of the features of Google Drawings through Lynda.com, an on-demand software training website that is available for all people with memberships to the site.

In the Lynda.com tutorials, there is a training for Google Drive software called Google Drive Essential Training. In the Google Drive Essential Training, Chapter 8, called Working with Drawings, is dedicated to learning about Google Drawings software. This training consists of four short videos totaling only 12 minutes and 37 seconds: an amazingly short amount of time to become an expert!

Screen shot 2013-10-17 at 9.35.16 PMThe first video, Introduction to Google Drawings, is appropriately named because it is just that, an introduction! This video gives a quick overview of the various features of Google Drawings, such as inserting images and shapes, adding text, and creating flow charts. The later videos go into depth about how to perform these features.

The next video is called Creating and editing a drawing. This video goes into detail aboutScreen shot 2013-10-17 at 9.35.48 PM how to add all of the different features onto the blank page in order to design a cool Drawing. In Google Drawings, the user can add a wide variety of lines and shapes, as well as arrows and other figures. These figures can help to add dimension to a Drawing because they can be used as a means of design in addition to images. This video also gives instructions on how to insert images into the Drawing. Images can either be uploaded from the user’s computer, taken as a snapshot with a webcam, inserted from a website by using a URL address, or even uploaded directly from a saved Screen shot 2013-10-18 at 2.09.05 PMfolder in the user’s Google Drive. All of the shapes, figures, and images can be resized and repositioned in order to customize the layout of the page. Text can also be inserted into the Drawing through a Text Box. The colors of the shapes, figures, and text can also be changed. These capabilities are helpful for users because it allows Google Drawings to be used for any occasion. A user can create an image for anything, ranging from flyers to professional presentations.

Flowcharts are another great feature about Google Drawings. In the third video, Creating a flowchart, you can learn all about how to make them! This video teaches the user how to manipulate the different shapes and figures. As mentioned before, all of the shapes andScreen shot 2013-10-18 at 1.56.23 PM figures can be resized and repositioned. The shapes and figures can be placed in front of and behind one another. Flowcharts can be used for many different purposes. I found this feature to be especially great because, in my own experience, sometimes it can be difficult to find charts that properly display information that I am trying to present; so, it is nice to know that in those times of need, I can create my own to use in my presentations.

Finally, the last video, Inserting, exporting, and emailing drawings, goes into detail about the remaining features of Google Drawings. Once your Drawing is completed, you will want to save it in a way that it can be used in other areas. Drawings can be copied and pasted into other Google Drive programs and it can be exported into downloads as a PDF Screen shot 2013-10-18 at 2.20.22 PMDocument, a Scalable Vector Graphic, a PNG Image, or even a JPEG Image. Downloading the image is a nice way of saving it because it can be inserted into other programs on your computer, it can be emailed from your downloads folder, you can keep it stored in your computer for however long you choose, and you can even be inserted into other Google Drive programs. This makes the image easily accessible. The Drawing can also be emailed to somebody from directly within the Google Drawings program. Keeping it within the Google Drive system is also a good option because it requires fewer steps and Google Drive can act as a sort of online external hard-drive. This makes the image accessible from any computer, anywhere in the world.

Online availability is a nice feature in itself. Google Drawings is not an expensive type of software that needs to be installed into the user’s computer. Google Drawings is free and online, the only requirement for this software is having a Google account. Google accounts are also free and easy to create. Google makes this software accessible for anyone.

In my opinion, the online availability is the most appealing part about Google Drawings. The same way that other documents created in Google Drive programs are automatically saved and can be emailed or downloaded at the click of a button, Google Drawing images are just as easy. I have been very familiar with Google Documents and Google Presentations for a long time, but I was always curious about Google Drawings. I did not know for what it was useful until I watched the tutorials. In order to create my own jpeg file, I used to screenshot my Microsoft Word documents. Now, I know that I can easily create my own images through Google Drawings.

You you find that you love Google Drawings and are looking for other ways to create neat images, check out Angie E.’s blog post, Media and SmartArt in Microsoft PowerPoint! She can tell you all about how it is another great resource to incorporate creativity into presentations!

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14 Responses to Working with Google Drawings

  1. B. Taylor says:

    Thanks Robin – bet many of us have not explored Drawing program in Google Drive. Don’t forget that in both Google Drawing and Word and PowePoint, you can choose to save/export/download an image (drawing, SmartArt, diagram, etc.) and then use it on a webpage (like a blog post). Very handy tools.

  2. Sara R. says:

    Robin, although I have been using Google Drive for many years now, I seemed to have overlooked that there is a drawing capability within the program. I really enjoy drawing, and sometimes it is necessary for a given presentation. Thank you so much for including the images in your post–they illustrated the different types of things that are able to be drawn very well (plus I liked the cute animals). Very well written, informative post!

  3. Tabitha C. says:

    Hi Robin! I think Google Drawings is so interesting. They could be an excellent resource when teaching because students would be interested in the technology and creative aspect. I also love your example with the hedgehog!! It’s great that the images can be exported in a variety of formats. Thanks for your post!

  4. Steph G. says:

    Robin, I had no idea that Google Drawings existed. I want to learn more about, it seems so cool! That would be such a different way to approach a project. I could absolutely see myself teaching this to my students to use! Thank you so much!

  5. Maria H. says:

    This is a great post, Robin! I can connect to a lot of what you wrote about in regards to using shapes in Google Drawings because I am using a flowchart, organizational program called Popplet for my “cool tool” blog post. I am explaining some other options for making flowcharts for students, and this Google Drive example that you used a screenshot of perfectly matches what I need.Thanks a lot!

  6. Laura H. says:

    I have never ever used Google Drawings, but this looks like a super useful tool! I love viewing this visually and not just text, so flowcharts would be so helpful to me and my learning style. Good job Robin!

  7. Winna P. says:

    Robin, this post was very well written! Thanks so much for sharing this exciting part of Google Drive. As many have mentioned above, I have also neglected this aspect until this post introducing me to this creative and useful tool. As Tabitha and Steph mentioned, I can most definitely see myself using this in my classroom. I love finding creative tools for myself and my future students to use in the classroom. Thanks again!

  8. Alexia M. says:

    Robin, I had never heard of Google Drawings until I read this post. I guess that this program is similar to paint for windows. However, having a Mac, I have not really had the chance to use a similar application, because to my knowledge there is not a program for this on the mac. I think it would be really cool to work on Google Drawings with someone else at the same time, whether it be for fun or for a project. I definitely will look into this program! Thanks so much!

  9. Mary F. says:

    Great post Robin! As most people have already said, I had never heard of Google Drawing until this post – but after reading this it is something I really want to try. I can already think of so many projects that I could use in the classroom with this. Thanks so much!

  10. Aaron M. says:

    Robin, thanks so much for this. As most everyone has said, I’ve never heard of Google Drawing until this post so thank you again. I feel that I can use this feature when I’m teaching as another tool to make timelines for history. This would just be another easy way to share among myself and other faculty or if I assign a project students to share and collaborate amongst themselves. Again, thank you!

  11. Angie E. says:

    Great job Robin! I thought I had used Google drawing in an unsuccessful attempt to create a poster for one of my classes last year, but it was just a Google presentation. I did not realize that there was a whole other type of document that could be created in drive. Now that I’ve read your post though, I feel much more confident using it. I loved your flowchart examples too!

  12. Victoria B. says:

    Great post! I didn’t know there was such a thing as Google Drawing. I always use Microsoft Word to create things but this seems like a great alternative. On my old computer, I always used Microsoft Office but for some reason the software on my computer doesn’t include it. Using Microsoft Word is incredibly frustrating when trying to add and manipulate pictures. I will definitely give Google Drawing a shot as it sounds like it is similar to Microsoft Office and easier to use than Microsoft Word.

  13. Katie H. says:

    Loved your post Robin! I have never heard of Google Drawing or seen anyone use it before! I always struggle when creating images on a computer comes up because I never know what tool to use other than Microsoft Paint, but now I know about this amazing tool. Your post was very well written with lots of cute pictures (hi stinky). I can definitely see myself using this tool to create visual aids for students or graphic organizers. Thanks so much for teaching me about it!

  14. Chelsea S. says:

    Thank you so much for an awesome post, Robin! Last year I took Statistics and I needed quite a bit of help at times with my homework. I have a friend who is great at math and goes to school in Pennsylvania so he would often help me with problems through Google Drawings seeing as it is so easy to be on the same page instead of holding pieces of papers up through Skype and making sure they see it alright. I feel like Google Drawings is one of those tools that people don’t need all the time, but when they do need it, it makes their life so much easier. Thank you again for such an awesome post!

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