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View Full Version : How did everyone get their start/education?


domi0036
09-26-2007, 04:51 PM
Hey, I'm new but I searched for this particular topic, didn't see anything, so....here's my question:

How did everyone get the necessary background to design and develop their websites?

Personally, I graduated from the U of MN 5 years ago with an International Business degree, since then I've been working in Mortgages (which isn't very exciting) working on our marketing. Well, i've been trying to improve our website(s) and the deeper and deeper I get into web design/development, the more I've learned I really enjoy it. Now I have 15+ web ideas I'd like to get started as I feel they all have great earning potential. I'd much rather give up my day job and do this kind of work fulltime, but alas, I lack the knowledge.

So, my question is, can I pick this information up through tutorials and trial/error, or is this something I need to go back to school for? What if I want to get employed full time doing web design? Do I need certain qualifications?

I bit the bullet and purchased Adobe CS3, I've gone through the lynda.com dreamweaver cs3 essentials training, and I feel I have a real general background, what do you recommend I do now?

Sorry for the all the questions, I'm just so excited to have finally found a potential profession I'm actually interested in! Thanks in advance for any help.

domedia
09-26-2007, 05:37 PM
Hi Domi and welcome to the forums!
I'm going to answer these question with my background, I think you'll get different views thought from different members.
So, my question is, can I pick this information up through tutorials and trial/error, or is this something I need to go back to school for? My way into this has been trial/error and reading and studying by myself. In started in this industry at the very bottom and worked my way up. I know there's great web designers out there with amazing skills but no formal background. I've also seen freshly educated 'web-duh-signers' with little or no concept about the media they are supposed to work in. I think this really depends on which school you go to though.. There's awesome teachers out there as well. I bit the bullet and purchased Adobe CS3, I've gone through the lynda.com dreamweaver cs3 essentials training, and I feel I have a real general background, what do you recommend I do now? Keep practicing and better your skills. Read more tutorials (there's plenty online) and participate in forums like this one. There's few shortcuts to get good at design/coding, it takes a genuine interest, which you already have, and time to dedicate to it.

When you say you want to do this full time, do you mean working for yourself, for a local company or something bigger? I think the three would have slightly different approaches.

domi0036
09-26-2007, 05:55 PM
When you say you want to do this full time, do you mean working for yourself, for a local company or something bigger? I think the three would have slightly different approaches.

I'd like to get into it fulltime, designing on my own, for myself. But, I feel if I got into it fulltime working for a local company, I might get caught up to speed quicker. Sorry, I know I'm not phrasing this so well. I guess initially I'd like to build sites for myself and the company I'm working for.

Ricky55
09-27-2007, 07:50 AM
I've gone through loads of Lynda training plus several books, but you can't beat just working on sites and pushing yourself into areas that you've not really done before then you ask for help on great sites like this and learn more and more.

Thats what I love about web design you can always feel like you have just touched the tip of the iceberg and theres always so much more to learn.

When it comes to the design, it helps if you've done graphics work but you do pick up styles and methods and learn how to make things look good. You also need to be profiecent in a good image editor like Photoshop which is the best in my opinion.

I've been doing sites now for around 3 years and currently developing my CSS and Action Script skills and I love learning now just as much as I did when I first started to use Dreamweaver.

Ricky55

chriskq
09-27-2007, 09:47 AM
im in interface developer (front-end) by trade but also do some freelance web work for a designer friend. I did an I.T course at uni and web development didnt really even feature in the course but i did a few practise sites and so forth - figured it would be fun to do and decided to look at that path after i got my degree.

Started as a junior at a company and i had only had dreamweaver 7 experience and some basic photoshop skills. Since then (2 yrs) ive learnt html, xhtml, css, photoshop some javascript at work and at home i try and push myself in php and basic flash.

For a backend language i think php is the way to go esp if ur going to freelance. Asp and .Net pays well in the industry but there is a steep learning curve with OO programming and besides creating the website (what u see in the browser) is much more fun i think.

CSS is very powerful and can really make your website clean, easy to update and all with minimal code. my fav css site is www.cssplay.co.uk (http://www.cssplay.co.uk) www.positioniseverything.net is a goodie.


welcome to the forum too domi

domi0036
09-27-2007, 12:49 PM
Thanks for your stories and information. It's really helpful. I'm getting the feeling that I can continue to work, continue learning and eventually pick it up, which is exciting!