Web Design 101: Picking A Program

Nowadays, everyone is getting into web design. And why not? It is easy to learn, challenging to master, and is a great way to express yourself or advertise your company. For the professional, it is a great tool for making your resume and examples of your work dynamically available to potential employers. For hobbyists and enthusiasts, it is a great way to connect with like-minded people and to the global community, greatly expanding your own horizons. Really, the hardest part is just in getting started. The first thing you'll need as a budding web designer is a good tool to take your vision and make it reality.

Scott is a independent website designer (see https://scottheron.co.uk/web-design-edinburgh/ for further information) for a number of years, he believes that it is important to clarify further.  In looking for website design tools, the first thing you will have to consider is cost. There are many reputable programs available and the costs can get quite high. However, if you are sufficiently tech savvy and computer literate you may be able to get away with using freeware programs which can have the same functionality, though perhaps not in quite as polished a user interface, or perhaps requiring a little bit more coding language (which you'll learn more about as you read up on web design). If you're a student (or really anyone with a .edu-ending e-mail address) chances are that you can find some of the more popular design programs at a discount, or in some cases even for free, you just have to do the research and some shopping around. If you're not in this position, freeware programs are great to play with and learn, and then you can decide from there if you want to pay for something that may fit your style better. However if you find something free that works for you, roll with it!

The second thing you'll be looking for is functionality. Have in mind what you're looking to accomplish with your website. Sometimes, drawing it out on paper is an immense help, and something many experience professional website designers will do. Think of whether you will need animated objects, video, interactive content, or anything else on your page that might take a specific sort of program. Look at the capabilities of what your program can do and see if it is lacking in anything. If it is, you may need to search for another program, or supplement that program with something that can create what else you might need (this is especially true for displaying media on your site such as videos and/or music).

The third thing you'll want to look for is simplicity. If you open up a program and are completely lost, look for a how-to or introductory guide from that program's publisher, or a forum that has accessible information or tutorials. Be aware of what programs will need from you in order to function. If some programs require HTML coding knowledge, or a deep understanding of CSS style sheets, and you aren't familiar with those terms, take it as an opportunity to do some research and learn. But if it's just above your head right now, take a step back and find a program that's more user friendly.

Once you've got a good program that fits you as a web designer and as a general user, you're ready to start mapping out what you want your site to look like. Take a look at some memorable sites you've been to for ideas and examples to build upon your own. The internet is a much richer source of design information than just articles and informative links.  Remember, the entire internet IS web design.

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