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What are the basic NEEDS for a web designer starting off?

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Hello, for a while I have been thinking of being a part time web designer but I am not quite sure where to start.
basics to know would be:
basic html and css
html5 and css3
familiarize yourself with Bootstrap and HTML5 Boilerplate
CMS, most easy to grasp is wordpress (understanding the control panel, installing themes, editing them, making custom themes)
commonly used Jquery such as Sliders, carousels, etc.
a bit on SEO
Responsive Design

I suggest checking out w3 schools to learn code language and creative bloq and smashing magazine to find lots of tutorials on some of the advanced stuff such as wordpress, responsive design, and SEO.
As you go, almost all of your questions/challenges can be answered by Stackoverflow.com
All the above but think about why websites fail?

The ability to code means squat if the content sucks. I can spot websites from thousands of miles away done by someone who didn't take at least a course or two in graphic design/presentation, color, typography (I so wish people knew what kerning a display face or adjusting word and letter spacing could do, for instance) or whatever.

You also should understand how your web design might integrate with the physical world of printed graphics, company identity and so forth. A generation or so of web designers is near clueless as to how to print their web elements on paper or sew a logo on a cap. I once got stuck resolving an order for 40,000 baseball caps and never could convince the web designer, whose work was great on screen, that a stitching machine needed each color separated out and that a sewing machine could not sew either RGB or CMYK combined. Forget trying to explain the separations had to be above 72dpi too!

I think a mistake many web designers make is overstating their capabilities in areas beyond coding. I would build a team that can help you fill in the gaps in areas such as those I mention. I know many wonderful "analog" designers and content specialists that would never attempt to code a website but could add so much. Many look to link with good coders and techies.

Good luck. Designers of any ilk are bashing each other with 2x4s with nails in the end to get $200 worth of work. Or they are working for free for the great recognition. It is a total scam. In my day, clients that did not want to pay ran contests. The irony is they would not think of suggesting any others key to their business work for free. Writers, designers, web programmers. Screw em and play to their egos I guess.

Right now anybody with a cousin or spouse thinks they are a graphic, interior or whatever designer. Anybody that can do template work, even if clueless of what the displayed HTML or whatever code means, thinks they are web designer. And they all beat themselves up working for chump change.

I know how hard it is starting out and I have started a few design practices. You have to make some compromises at first. Just do not sell your soul. You should at least make what the parking meter you pay for client meetings is making!!!!!
O.O Wow I really need to learn a lot. Note to self education is very very important and got to practice making vector logos. I do know some graphic design skills, I plan on going to school for Media Design so I can get some skill in both graphic and web.
The "logo" business has become so bizarre and incomprehensible. It seems like every business thinks they need an elaborate one? When I travel around Chicago I bet less than 10 percent of the logos on signs I see give me any clue whatsoever what the business is about and that is what a logo is supposed to do! I guess some are pretty but why?

And it has become brutal. You can get five options from some local logo factory in India or something for $25. Craig's List here is plastered with cheap/mean people offering great recognition for designing their bar, company, band or whatever logo FOR FREE! I don't see how their can be any money in it.

Identity campaigns involve much more than designing the logo. Tap into those still truly investing in the process and you might be on to something.

At least you realize you have to be able to enlarge and reduce a logo without it falling apart. A good one should also work in black & white and perhaps different colors (to adapt to different cultures) It should work well and consistently in the analog and digital worlds and on small things like business cards on up to the fantail on the company jet. Of course it must work at different sizes onscreen as well.

There are some great books out there to augment your coursework if you are good at self exploration. On the job training, even if you have to start at the lowest rung processing mail for a graphic or web design firm or ad agency creative departments will expose you to people doing things hands on.
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Recent Discussion Comments

suruha
suruha
14 hours ago
kimmyp wrote:
I have an A3 printer which I can print on borderless A3 paper giving me 30 cms (12") wide paper that I use for scrapbooking, covering notebooks, etc. I use my own designs only as I am reselling and most of the designs on here do not have a commercial license.


You can check some of the online stock sites, such as Pixabay. Often, there are patterns and they have liberal terms! You should be able to incorporate a pattern you find there and sell it or do whatever you like!
kimmyp
kimmyp
20 hours ago
I have an A3 printer which I can print on borderless A3 paper giving me 30 cms (12") wide paper that I use for scrapbooking, covering notebooks, etc. I use my own designs only as I am reselling and most of the designs on here do not have a commercial license.
MainAlice
MainAlice
20 hours ago
cool idea, if you post your work somewhere-share with us)
Trixxie
Trixxie
2 days ago
Hi Edith - thanks for posting this. I have been getting the same pop-up updates about Flash. I did the exact same thing as you. I close out the tab! I wonder what other scams might come our way. I just want to be here to color. *sigh*
Anyway, I truly appreciate you "just saying", Edith.
Thanks!
Trix :)
eighteyed
eighteyed
3 days ago
Over the past week I've been troubled by a page direct to some site telling me Apple wants me to update my Flash Player. Don't you dare do it. How do I know this is a scam? First, there's a questionable web address, and how would Apple know what Flash Player I have, and if they did, wouldn't they tell me in an offical update? Second, I know my Flash Player is current, because I went to the OFFICIAL Adobe site, and installed the latest current one just in case, and I still get these redirects. I think these adlinks that infest the CL pages now can tell through cookies that I enabled Flash (which is dormant by default in Apple software because it's a known malware risk) long enough to design a new template for the site. Third, since I know Flash software is vulnerable to hacking, any unasked-for communication about it through my browser is suspect.

I just wanted you to know these are happening, and to never never click on one of these pages. If you get one, close the tab immediately. If you ever question your Flash installation, download new software ONLY through the official Adobe site, adobe.com.

Just saying.

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