Tips and sources for beginning designers
For some time now I have been strugling with my inability to create my own web designs. I am a pretty decent coder but I always have trouble when I have to create the interface designs.
I would like to try and learn to design my own websites
Can someone with no design skills learn to create some decent designs? If so, where should they start?
I should mention I know my way around both Photoshop and Fireworks but I don’t feel capable of creating any designs – even when I have a reference design to use.
Can you direct me to some books, resources , tutorials that teach from a web designer’s point of view?
When I first started, I didn’t even know how to use Photoshop so you’re already one step ahead of what I was. I found it best to lay down the content that you know is necessary – or if you don’t have any then just put some text layers down for things like; heading, sub heading – and then get some dummy text and divide it into a few paragraphs, do a ‘feed’ type layout of text and then a basic navigation (just the words).
Then mess around with them on the page until you’re happy that it looks decent and then you can start drawing boxes around them. I didn’t get a good design for a while, but you get there. Pick a few colours that you want to use, or Google a colour palette type site like: http://www.colourlovers.com/palettes/top
Then I just used to colour the boxes and add gradients and things like that and then eventually highlights and shadows etc to give it more depth…
Download some free brushes from Deviant Art as well and play around with those. I mostly just played around. And then when you think you’ve got the hang of using Photoshop to sort of create a website, then maybe try to copy other designs for a while.
Sorry I didn’t really direct you to any resources as such, but I never really used anything.