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How to get better in webdesign?

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  • How to get better in webdesign?

    Hello, my friends.

    I am looking for advices about giving my next steps. I know practice will make me better, but I need to know what practice first to get better.

    I got some notion of Photoshop (about beginner to intermediate), and I am good with coding, but my graphic design skills still poor.

    I need some references of materials, exercises, practices... anything who will make me getting better fast.

    My worse skills are creating banners and logos. I know some cool Photoshop effects, but I just can't think in something who will make a good header for a website and since I learned too much about webdesign itself, my notion to create logos are almost zero.

    Please, I need some advices to start make some money fast. I am near to quit my university because I can't afford it anymore.

    And I am looking for a mentor. I can help finish some simple jobs for just guidance.

    Thank you everyone who try to help me!
    I hope the best for us all!

  • #2
    Welcome to the forum Galaad. We ask all new members to read the forum rules posted here and here. They will give you all the info you need on how the forum runs, the rules and regs, and give you some background info on our long running, inside jokes
    This post is brought to you by the letter E and the number 9. Those are the buttons I push to get a Twix out of the candy machine.
    "I put my heart and my soul into my work, and have lost my mind in the process."


    • #3
      1. you don't use Photoshop to make logos. It doesn't matter if the client thinks they are going to be 'web-only'. Any company that is going to stay a company is going to need that logo printed as some point not to far into their life.

      2. there is no 'easy' button to learning good design. Graphic Design is a profession, not a get-rich-quick scheme. There is theory behind it. Color theory, Marketing Theory, Psychology et al. It isn't about making pretty pictures on a page.


      • #4


        Just finished read everything!
        I hope I can bring something valuable soon to the forum!


        1. So I will use what to make logos?

        2. I am not trying to get rich overnight by "drawing some beautiful pictures". I am trying to learn how to be a good professional. If I keep this mindset "I can't get good fast", guess what will happens?

        I will work hard to get better, even knowing that will takes a long time to master the concepts and techniques.

        I am just seeking help to not waste time with something that maybe is not that important right now.

        I am not a native english speaker, sorry if passed the idea that design is just a get-rich-quick scheme. I never meant this insultive definition to the profession.

        I just think that with good guidance, you can maximize your learning curve. I am looking for this good guidance.

        Thanks for your answer.


        • #5
          The industry's standard software program for creating logos would be Adobe Illustrator. You can use just about any vector based software, including Corel Draw, but Illustrator is the most popular.
          Burn the land and boil the sea, you can't take the sky from me.



          • #6
            I do use Illustrator sometimes, but I like to do that on Photoshop. I will to change my focus on Illustrator, since vectorial designs are better to logos.

            Thanks for the advice!


            • #7
              I guess what I'm really trying to say is, a student shouldn't freelance directly out of school. Especially if they don't finish school. Freelancing is a business. It should be treated as such. You need a business plan, a little starting cash and most importantly a whole lot of skill in how to do things correctly quickly, not only in design but in business management. What you might make in instant cash you may lose in the hours you have to pour into figuring out workflows and cashflows.

              As a freelancer, you don't just rake in cash for the bank. You have to deal with contracts, accounting, sales chasing, along with whatever your country has for taxes.


              • #8
                I think its better for you that you will improve your web design skill from w3school. Even many professional and school teacher prefer this site to improve your web design skills.


                • #9
                  You're right. Being a designer is a profession not a hobby. But I don't see why someone can't get good in something (not only design) just because he didn't finished school.

                  If you do something you like, you do that with your heart. I am not saying you will be better than someone who has a formation, but a diploma does not means you are good or even prepared to run business.

                  I mean, if you like and get good formation, chances you become a really good professional are high, but and if you can't afford a regular school at the beginning? Will you beg someone to pay that for you?

                  It's not a rare fact someone begin to work with something they like, without a formation, and get really good at that. And about taxes and governmental issues, dunno where you live, but here there are agencies that you can contact them to take care of this part of your business.

                  And like I said before, I mean it to any profession, not only design (I don't see designers more or less important than other professionals).

                  One fact to proof my point: The creators of Youtube were kids. And I am pretty sure they were not programmers with a diploma to make what they made.


                  • #10
                    I suggest you w3school for improve your web design skill.


                    • #11
                      Thanks, Danish01!

                      I didn't know there are Web Design pages at w3schools!


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Galaad View Post
                        One fact to proof my point: The creators of Youtube were kids. And I am pretty sure they were not programmers with a diploma to make what they made.
                        ... and they didn't see the profit in it, until google came along, bought it from them and packed it full of ads... You can also be certain that since then, it has been honed by professionals to the point where there is probably close to none of the original code still active.

                        I think what PD is getting at (and what frustrates professional designers) is that people are selling design services not knowing what they are doing. For example, creating logos in Photoshop, eventually the client is going to need they're logo on something bigger (or a vinyl sticker, etc). It will eventually have to go to a professional somewhere that will have to then tell the client "we will have to add this unforeseen art charge, which is outside of the original quote, as the logo needs to be recreated..." or something else that will probably frustrate the client. Which ends up looking bad on us, as a profession, because the client doesn't want to feel like they have been taken for a ride and would rather think we are trying to take them for a ride.

                        There is a steep learning curve starting out in graphic design even if you've been to school for it. Without real working knowledge, you can end up costing clients lots of money down the road because you didn't know what you were doing. If you don't have a grasp on the theory, all you are doing is making pretty pictures. Of course, if you gave a bunch of monkeys typewriters they'd eventually come up with shakespeare, but most of it would be trash.
                        Last edited by kemingMatters; 04-09-2012, 01:09 PM.
                        Design is not decoration.


                        • #13
                          The monetization of Youtube doesn't change the fact that the website was created by non-professionals with a great idea. Of course it has lots of upgrades, but I don't see why I can't give the creators some credit.

                          Bad "professionals" will exist in any area. And I believe most of time, is not formation that change the fact of the professional be good or bad. I think if you do something you like, you will learn that faster and give much more attention and care. Now, if you do something just because the money and benefits it will bring to you, probably you will not be that good (or you will suck!) on that. It explains why there are people making 100x or even more money doing the "same" thing.

                          Look at sports. There are athletes making millions per month while some making couple hundreds. Most professionals in sports has a regular training schedule and is not thaaaaat different, but some become regular athletes and others stars. Same happens with actors, is not everyone who take acting classes who will become a Hollywood Star.

                          What make some people reach the highest spots on their career is the passion for doing what they do. Would be very awkward Johnny Depp saying "Cameras? I hate it all! I just do that because it gives me fame and money!". Did you understand my point here?

                          I am not saying that you, professional designers with lots of experience are wrong in trying to protect your ground. I deeply agree with you, but I don't see why not to try to help beginners other way than just say "go to a design school and get a regular formation". You don't need to waste your time with everyone newcomer, you can recommend some materials, see some of their material and tell them what they need to get better before to start in the professional field.

                          Sorry if I am sounding cocky, I swear is not my intention. Is very hard to me to explain my point without sounding this way. I am liking too much the talk flow of this thread!


                          • #14
                            One minor amendment -- the original concept for Youtube wasn't what we have now. IIRC it was intended to be a place for showing off video of yourself for dating purposes and the like.

                            The "whatever" that's there now just... sort of grew.


                            • #15
                              The idea and the execution are two entirely different things, what we are saying is you shouldn't sell a house you built without knowing the building code first. That's a bad analogy because there inspectors involved in the process and if you are freelancing or in business for yourself then you are quality assurance also. (left to your own devices)

                              You need to know the theory and the technical bits before you start selling design and not learn on the clients dime. Sure there are learning curves that can't be avoided as technology changes but the basics should be learned before you try to make a business out of it.

                              unfortunately you pretty much require that piece of paper to even be considered for a career in design. Going into business for yourself without working in the industry is creating a huge obstacle for yourself before you get out of the gates.
                              Design is not decoration.






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