For a lot of people getting your first great job in the digital design industry seems like a crazy dream...
Getting into the industry can seem super-intimidating. Even people who already work in agencies sometimes struggle to progress if they aren't learning the right skills.
Here's the thing. The top agencies and in-house digital teams have usually got more work than they can handle so there are often opportunities for enthusiastic people who can come in on the ground floor and learn fast on the job. If you're smart, if you have some talent and you're prepared to put a little work in, that could be you (cue fist-pump).
By the end of this course you'll be able to design a working prototype of a website with great user experience (UX), user interface (UI) and interaction design (IxD). You'll be able to use navigation in a sophisticated way and learn the basics of responsive design for multiple devices. Along the way you're going to learn how to present content and work with web fonts and colours. And you're going to learn all the right terminology to articulate how you reached your design solution.
Who am I & why did I do this course?
I'm a digital Creative Director and agency owner. When interns or inexperienced designers come to work in my studio I want them to start designing confidently on day one. This course is a collection of all the things I teach them, so if you're still reading by this point, it's probably the stuff you want to know too. There's no filler - I've put a lot of effort into keeping it really focused to get you up and running as fast as possible.
To help you out, you're going to get pro quality design templates based on the ones used by my agency in the work we do for clients like Amnesty, Timberland, BBC, Johnson & Johnson & others. We're also going to pick apart some of the sites we've designed so you can see our thinking.
What this course does NOT cover
Is this the right course for me?
Let me help you give yourself the best shot at getting on in the industry.
What are you waiting for? Let's go!
Watch this video for a quick rundown of the subject areas in the course and what you can expect to learn by taking it.
This introduces some of the basics ideas in the course and why it's important to think about UX, UI and IxD (don't worry, they will be explained!) while you're doing your designs.
Most web designers use the RGB colour model when creating colour palettes for their designs but RGB is HARD to work with. I've been using it for nearly 20 years and it still bugs the shit out of me.
HSB is way better but lot's of people - including very experienced designers - don't know about it or use it. This lecture shows you how easy it is to work with and get great results.
How you use type in your designs is critical. Good typographic skills separate great designers from merely good ones and that applies just as much on the web as anywhere else.
It's important to know how to use type in your web design work and also to understand how to specify your typographic choices to make it easy for the person who's coding your design. That way, your design will stay as you intend it.
One of the most important things to learn as a digital designer is that you pretty much have to throw out the idea of a fixed canvas for your design.
Users are going to see it and use it on any one of a huge number of different size and resolution screens.
Understand this - and how to deal with it - and you're halfway to being a digital designer.
What have you learned about SCREEN RESOLUTION?
This is where we start looking at the components that make up web pages.
I'm going to walk you through the theory of how these fit together, as well as using examples from a live site.
Building on the previous module, we take a piece of content and look at how we would understand the task associated with it (UX) design appropriate interface elements for it (UI) and design an appropriate interaction (IxD).
Prototyping is the secret sauce that is really going to expand your abilities as a digital designer. This is the first of 4 exercises where you're going to use the Marvel app to create working prototypes that will allow you to use your design as well as just seeing it.
In here we look at the 3 types of web navigation, menus, search and contextual and look at some real examples of their use including a Facebook history lesson.
This phrase was coined by my business partner (and all-round UX guru) Fergus Roche. Check him out on Twitter at @ferg4ddc.
In this exercise you'll use Marvel to prototype the 3 types of navigation.
What have you learned about NAVIGATION?
As you've already learnt, designing for multiple screen sizes is one of the foundation skills of being a digital designer. But how the design looks is only one part of the equation. As I say in the lecture, someone may end up using your design on a screen the size of a TV or one the size of your hand. How they use it is going to be very different in each case.
So we review the characteristics of different devices as well as looking at some key principles like breakpoints, linearisation and touch-friendly design.
In this module you're going to prototype a mobile design with multiple interactions and send it to your phone so you can test how the design works.
What have you learned about RESPONSIVE DESIGN?
You made it through... Here's a quick recap of the key concepts and some thoughts about where to take them.
Here's where you get to take all the stuff you've learnt on the course and pour it into some simple design prototypes that can form the basis of a portfolio of work you can send to potential employers or clients. This is where the time and effort you've put into the course will really pay off.
HIT ME UP IN THE COMMENTS IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS. I'm here for you :)
Here's where you download all the exercise files and also the free design templates.
I'm owner & Creative Director of a digital design agency based in the UK. I work mostly with fashion, technology and charity brands including people like Amnesty International, Microsoft, Speedo, Chanel, BBC & Timberland.
I'm passionate about making digital design skills available to creative people. I love seeing people express their creativity & ideas. Amen.