I was just at the beginning of my career working as a freelancer. I took every possible project, (and worked for less than you can imagine), in order to have some first projects in my portfolio.
I read a few books about programming and front-end development but never learned about the design aspect. I knew there were hundreds of Photoshop tutorials on how to make some cool effects but it wasn’t anything practical that I could use while designing websites for my clients.
I learned how to design project-by-project, experimenting on real live sites and discovering new techniques in practice. I had my “a-ha moment” every few projects when I invented something that changed the way I designed my graphic. At the time, I didn’t know if it was right or in accordance with any design rules.
Later, I started learning specifically about the art of design and found out that most of the things I discovered by myself was covered by some well-known design rules. Maybe I could be a much better designer if learned about it at the beginning and didn’t have to keep reinventing the wheel. However, thanks to my own experience, I realized that not every design technique can be applied when we build websites.
We need new rules and new techniques that will help us to do our job better. We need new solutions to new problems.
So, what is this blog about?
In this blog, I want to write about anything that I have found to be useful in my work. I will support all my articles with real case scenarios and practical examples so you can start applying some techniques immediately. I’ll also share some secrets and show you my work process and how I design websites.
There are a few important topics that I want to cover:
1. Layout and Whitespace
Learning about whitespace changed everything I once knew about design. You can solve many problems by properly managing the whitespace in your design. By the same token, you can create many problems if you don’t use the whitespace wisely. Why is it so important? Why should you start the design by planning the whitespace? How can you create a good-looking space while maintaining balance?
2. Web typography
Text is a major part of any website. A beautifully designed typography makes the content easier to read, attracts more readers, makes them feel good on your website and finally converts. How can you mix different styles of fonts so that it is pleasing to the eye? What are the perfect font sizes and line heights to make it easier to read?
3. Usability and User Experience
The website has to be easy to use. Create a great experience for your users and they will never forget it. We have to remember that we create websites for users, not for ourselves. How can you learn more about the target audience and their needs? How can you evoke some emotions in the visitors and make your website unforgettable?
By 2015, there will be more mobile Internet users than wireline users in the USA.
Designing websites for mobile devices is now more important than ever before. You have to take this step today. By 2015, there will be more mobile Internet users than wireline users in the USA (source). What are the best practices in creating a mobile version of the website? What is a responsive layout and how can you prepare your website for it?
5. Freelance Business
I had a prosperous full time freelance business. I’ve been a part time freelancer since the beginning of my career. I’d like to share some stories how I quit my first full time job and started my freelance business. Where has it brought me and was it worth it? I’d like to tell you what I currently think about freelancing and if it’s a good business model for young and creative people.
6. Genesis Framework
Designing and developing Genesis child themes is my day job. I’m a part of StudioPress’ development team and you can find many of my themes on the StudioPress site. Also, my experience includes many custom Genesis based websites. I’d like to share with you some tricks and my work process. Find out how to build child themes using one of the best WordPress theme frameworks available on the market.
Perfect spacing, beautiful typography, great user experience and mobile responsiveness sound like an impossible mix, yet it’s a great recipe for the perfect website. It’s definitely not easy to combine all of these things but it’s always worth the effort to try it and follow the right path.
I still learn new things every day, just like you probably do. Please forgive my mistakes and let’s discuss any disagreements in the comments section. I hope we can take this journey together and learn from each other as much as we can.
Welcome to My World.