Click here to get the Itemized List of What to Learn When


Are you trying to find out what it takes to become a website designer in 2019? You’ve come to the right place. This video covers the 5 major areas you need in order to get started and build on becoming a website designer in 2019.

The 5 major areas you need to know to become a web designer in 2019 are as follows:

  1. Learn what the website trends are (be up to date on what the industry is doing)
  2. Learn CSS3 and HTML5
  3. Don’t Be a Know It All – Use Your Team
  4. Constantly be Learning – Don’t get stuck
  5. Take Care of Your Body

How Do I Learn to Become a Web Designer? How Do I Learn Website Design?

Start with familiarizing yourself with what good design looks like. An easy way to get started in web design here is frankly to use Google. Google top ten website designs in 2019, and similar queries, and you’ll get to see sites that have won awards for their outstanding work. Check out awards sites and see who won. Read blogs like Web Designer Depot. This is a phenomenal way to stay abreast of industry trends (i.e. the menu hamburger icon). Then when you’re ready, go learn HTML5, and CSS3. You may not want to learn “code” but you’re never going to get a job unless you’re familiar with these guys. And frankly, you’ll be a terrible designer unless you do because you won’t know the limitations of the code and will constantly be designing things your developer won’t be able to make happen. It’s important. Just do it.

What to Learn

To start, learn CSS3 and HTML5. Yes there are more things you really should know, but start there. Once you know these two things you’ll be able to be a much better designer because you’ll know the limitations of what your designs can do. You’ll be able to design in a way that allows a developer (if that’s not also you) break down your work into codable chunks. You’ll know not to do something crazy and off the wall because it won’t translate to tablet or mobile well, etc. (Again, see the Google Doc link above for a list of what to learn when).

Use Your Team

Once you’re hired you are more than likely not the only person on the team. More than likely there is a team at your new company and I’m telling you right now, USE them. Not only does it make them feel valuable, they will literally teach you to be a better designer. So remember we just talked about how knowing code makes you a better designer? Well, knowing a little about what a UX Designer does, what a developer does, what a project manager does – all those things add up for you. If you take a quick meeting with a UX designer who can poke holes in your design (and make you feel awful in the process – just kidding – not really), once you go back and make those changes you’ve now learned what not to do next time. One up for you on the good website designer scale. 10 minute Skype call with your offsite developer to talk through your design results in not putting forth that new modal window on your design because it conflicts with some other code he has already installed on the site. Bonus for you not looking bad in front of the boss later.

Constantly Be Learning

Use Tree House, Lynda, whatever you need to learn about new and old skills in your field. Heck, even use a library (remember those?). A lot will actually even go so far as to offer courses (I’m not kidding) on basic web related topics – for example I have regularly seen WordPress courses at local libraries here in D.C. Or if you’re willing to pay for them, local community colleges almost ALWAYS have super cheap courses on learning JavaScript, JQuery, or other more hands on coding skillsets. However you learn, always be working towards mastering that next skillset. If you don’t, you get complacent, and then when your job suddenly disappears (hello 2008) you are behind the pack in what you have to offer. Not to mention this is just solid career advice. You can’t move up if you never learn something new.

Take Care of Your Body

Our bodies are amazing. They can sit perfectly still for 8+ hours per day. That’s a strong back that can do that. Don’t believe me? Hold your arms straight out. Can you do that for 8 hours? Didn’t think so. Even though our backs are powerhouses, they still need care. Just like you’d walk a dog, go walk yourself. You’re still an organic being that needs good nutrition and regular exercise. Do a 10 minute YouTube video workout. The point is, our jobs are actually pretty awful for our health. We sit perfectly still for 40 hours a week, and then hope our bodies don’t deteriorate. They will unless we also exercise and eat (mostly) right.

The best advice I can give anyone starting out is to make sure you also move your body. Exercise just has to be a thing – a real part of your weekly life. Maybe not every day, but even just walking on your lunch hour will make you SO much more productive. It clears brain fog, makes your back happy, and over time will make you so much more valuable because you won’t call out sick as much, be as tired or as grumpy as your coworkers. You know all the benefits of exercise, all I’m saying is make that a part of your career path. You will be such a stronger website designer in 2019 and beyond, if you’re not battling your body and stress. Because projects will make you stressed out. Finding ways to move that stress out of your body (particularly your upper back – hello we type all day), will make you more productive by default.

Good luck on your career! And if you have any questions please leave a comment below!

Take care!

Wendy

Who Am I?

My name is Wendy Litteral and I am a website designer and have been for the last 21 (yep, 20+) years – 1998! I’ve been a web designer since the webs were young and Adobe Photoshop was installed with 3.5” floppy disks.