Sure, the internet is full of blogs geared towards web design, but few cater to the learning curve that is required of aspiring web designers. Learn how to design and code on different platforms as well as get advice on landing your first paid web design assignments by reading the blogs below.
Smashing Magazine is the most inclusive of all well-known design blogs. Regardless of your preferred platform for designing or coding, Smashing Magazine covers it in depth. Whether you’re interested in coding, creating mobile websites, designing WordPress themes, learning Photoshop or anything in between, you’re bound to find dozens (more like hundreds under the topics of WordPress and Photoshop) of articles.
Possibly the most useful features of the site is its variety of in-depth tutorials. Learning how to design a game, master Photoshop or learn all about Frameworks, can be easy thanks to Smashing Magazine’s detailed tutorials to get you started. They also offer a free job board which features both full time and freelance jobs to help you transition from aspiring web designer to paid professional.
What Freelance Folder lacks in its design tutorials, it makes up for in its business savvy advice. Smashing magazine can help you learn how to design websites, but Freelance Folder can help you sell your services. Marketing advice for freelancers, guides to breaking into the design business and articles on helping you manage your billable hours are abundant.
Freelance Folder also has a free job board which links you to the most recent freelance design jobs on the web. Another valuable feature is the forum, which is quite active. It’s the perfect way to mingle with likeminded aspiring and professional designers alike and get a quick response to any design questions you may have. Because Freelance Folder also caters to other freelancers, such as freelance writers, some articles may not apply to your interests.
Like Freelance Folder, Freelance Switch focuses more on the business aspect of web design. Its content typically features business tips for both aspiring and established web designers. Marketing advice, building a presence on social media platforms and gaining a competitive edge over the competition are typical content themes on Freelance Switch. Its forum is active and features discussions on all things design, marketing and business management.
It’s important to note that like Freelance Folder, Freelance Switch is tailored towards web designers but also features content targeted towards other freelancing types such as web content writers and web developers. So, some posts may not apply to your specific field of work. Last but not least, is its expansive job board which features jobs that have been exclusively uploaded by clients to Freelance Folder. It is a paid job board; however the $7 monthly fee is minimal in relation to the potential earnings and the ability to apply to a job with less competition (you must be a paying member to apply to the job postings). Freelance Switch also airs a podcast,Freelance Radio, which features respected guests and real world business tips.
If you’re serious about breaking into web design as a profession, make a habit of reading the blogs featured above. Not only will you learn the skills you need to beautifully design a website, but you’ll also learn the necessary marketing skills to turn that passion into a business.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Robin Melville is a web designer and guest author at Top Web Design Schools, where she contributed to the round up of 30 Great Blogs for Web Designers.