A couple years ago I decided to go back to school and take a chance on a whole new subject that I knew I would love: graphic design. I’m not a big fan of studying or memorizing for exams, but it took me a while after high school to think of trying design classes. Their website was great: it had testimonials from previous students and said that 92% of graduates were working in their field within a year. I was really impressed by this percentage – I never knew that there was such a big demand for graphic designers! I always thought that online design websites would sweep these jobs away from artists. Well, after 3-4 years of job searching, pro-bono work and freelancing, here I am with nothing that the school had promised. My initial instincts were right; more and more web sites are making cheap graphics, business cards, posters, you name it. There is no steady, well-paid jobs in graphic design. I tried to forget about what I had wanted to do with my diploma and started working in a great-paying construction job from Monday to Friday 7am to 3pm.
I started to look at these design websites carefully. I wondered, how are they making a living by having such cheap designs? Yes, they obviously have resources, but how were they able to corner the market? And then it hit me: social media. They are so good at advertising their products that they have an overflow of work. They can manipulate the market and easily ship internationally – designers like us are shut out. They are able to reach small companies that couldn’t afford a full-time designer, but still need graphic design services. This is where my interest in social media came from. How impressive is it to live in an era where we can reach around the globe by simply using social media?
The one thing I hate the most about a website is if you have to click more than 3 times to find what you need (Blackboard, *cough, cough*). Any more than 3 and your web interface is completely wrong; it confuses users trying to navigate the site and they’ll leave the page. This is where some bloggers have a faulty design. They should make sure that the design of the website flows to maximize page scrolling time. Imagery is also one of the most important factors in any kind of web interface; the power of visualization is what first draws a user in. A website with no images or graphics is just dull. Typography can be used to add interest and set the tone of the site, but don’t forget that there are a lot of dyslexics like me! From my personal experience, typography can make or break a website.
I could go on and on but at this point I should start teaching the class, *wink wink*. My ultimate goal with this program is to work in an environment where I could help design great social media interfaces for businesses.
If you need tips or tools on your upcoming website or blog here is a link to help you out:
I hope that you now know a little bit more about page design. Have you ever thought about the complexities of a website creation before? What are your thoughts on creating and designing a good website? Let me know in the comments below.
Did you think it was that simple? Here is a small glimpse of my journey and thoughts on my new interest in ”Designing for social media”
Here’s a small blog on how my design courses and social media courses cross paths. Do you agree with my take on how to properly design a website/blog? Feel free to comment and post in ”Designing for social media“.