What is a Web Designer?

Well in simple terms, it’s a person who designs things for the web! He/She uses their creative and technical skills to build or redesign websites. I find that it is pretty common to come across people who are self-taught. I myself went to a two year college to build a foundation in the field of study but in all honestly I’ve learned most of what I know through job experience and just playing around. It’s not hard, it just requires time and effort.

What does a Web Designer need to know?

  • Design fundamentals – color, layout, formatting etc..
  • Basic computer graphic skills – Photoshop, Illustrator
  • Knowledge in some programming languages – HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP, Flash etc..
  • Some experience with SEO is a plus
  • Most Importantly one must have a passion for whatever they are doing

What do they do?

  • Alot
  • Understand and discuss the underlying technology—its possibilities and limitations as well as related issues—with clients and team members.
  • Translate client needs, content, and branding into structured website concepts.
  • Translate projected visitor needs into structured website concepts.
  • Translate website concepts into appropriate, technically executable color comps.
  • Design navigation flow.
  • Establish the look and feel of web pages, including typography, graphics, color, layout, and other factors.
  • Render design elements from Photoshop, Illustrator, and other visual software services into usable elements of a working website.
  • Lay out web pages and sites using HTML and other web development languages.
  • Organize and present content in a readable, well-designed way.
  • Effectively participate on a web development team.
  • Modify graphics and code as needed.
  • Program HTML, JavaScript, and Style Sheets as needed especially if working on a freelance gig. In larger agencies, this work is often performed by web developers and technicians, but the accomplished web designer must be ready to get their own hands dirty if need be.

Web Design Services

How do I become one?

As mentioned before you do NOT need a degree to become a web designer. I honestly wish I hadn’t gone myself as I believe I’d still be where I am today without the amount of debt I (and millions of other) owe. Many employers in the industry don’t put as much weight in education as they do in experience and your portfolio. Do gigs for free just to build your portfolio. Freelance for lower compensation for the same reason. Do internships even unpaid ones just to get your feet wet. Read blogs and stay up to date to the latest technologies and advances in the field. Finally, once you have a collection of work that is presentable and you feel comfortable you can use as a resume then start applying to jobs and I’m sure you’ll be successful having put all the effort into it.