Navigating Front-End Development as a Designer

The creative industry is an ever changing landscape within which the lines that once separated different creative roles are becoming increasingly blurred. A creative professional must constantly seek development and progression, to meet the demands of this fluid landscape. 

Oak Creative designer, Issy Richardson has been taking her first steps into the world of front-end development.  At Oak, we believe this kind of continued professional development is not only essential to build a strong team, but it also gives team members new challenges and goals. Issy shares her experience here:

“As a designer, I have recently had the opportunity to expand my skill set and venture into HTML and CSS. To some these may seem like foreign languages (because in theory they are!). But to simplify, these are the digital languages in which websites are written or coded in. 

I had a very basic understanding of CSS knowledge previously. This was through inspecting web pages and finding out styling requirements like fonts and colours, for various projects. Linking this together with HTML has been so interesting. My design background is a great foundation, but you have to think differently for web… Designs need to be responsive and intuitive, keeping the end user in mind the whole time.

Concepts like layout, colour schemes, and user-friendly interfaces have helped to guide my web designs and provide clarity and insight. It’s cool to see how these design skills complement coding. My design eye helps me focus on making things aesthetically pleasing, even in the early stages of coding.

I can’t emphasise enough how fortunate I am to have our fantastic web developer, Dane, as a mentor. His guidance, patience, and willingness to explain even the fundamental concepts have been invaluable. Collaborating with someone experienced has significantly smoothed out the learning curve.

Whilst my background in design has influenced my HTML learning, it must also be said that my experiences so far in learning coding will now influence the way I approach design. Things like accessibility, colour contrasts and scale are major factors which ensure that my designs can cater for as many people as possible. Understanding the HTML process means I can apply these skills to the design process to create a platform that provides the client with a web design that is both functional and beautiful. 

The road ahead is exciting and there’s a lot I’m yet to dive into!  I know there’s more to learn, more challenges to tackle and more growth to achieve, but I can’t wait to continue on my front-end web dev journey.”

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