How do you become a professional website designer?
Well, if you've ever designed a website for fun and you enjoy writing code, you may already possess many of the basic skills needed to become a paid website designer. But, as you might expect, the skill set required for designer careers is constantly changing and you will need to enroll in a number of courses to sharpen your skills and learn about the latest software.
As far as schooling, most professional web designers have backgrounds in graphic arts, but these individuals never stop learning. They know that the field is always in flux and that if they do not keep abreast of things they will be left out in the cold. Web designers must also have an intimate understanding of HTML as well as all of the latest design software tools.
According to labor forecast reports, the job outlook for computer scientists-a group that includes design jobs and graphic design jobs-is expected to grow by more than thirty-five percent over the next eight years. This makes computer science one of the fastest growing fields in the world. And designer careers? Although the forecast does not single them out, many industry insiders report that the growth rates for design jobs and graphic design jobs may be even higher than that!
What do you need to get started?
To even apply for an entry-level position as a professional web designer you will need at least a certificate or degree in web design, multimedia, or graphic or digital arts. As the demand for these positions continue to grow, more and more college and universities are offering two and three year degree or certificate programs. It is also possible to obtain a certificate from a junior or community college or at an art or technical school. These days there are even online degree programs. As you can see, your options are virtually limitless.
What kind of classes do these programs include?
Most programs include classes that are industry specific such as visual design, scripting, site management, HTML, as well as writing and project management. They will also introduce you to web design tools like Flash, Dreamweaver, Adobe Illustrator, Perl, and Java.
A certificate from any accredited college or technical school will open many doors for you in this fast growing field. But to really rake in the big bucks what you need is experience. Just like any other designer, web site professional impress clients, and potential employers with the quality of their work. That is one reason why the salary range for web designers is so great. According to industry reports, web designers can earn between $47,000 to $71,000.
But an experienced web designer is not limited to web design jobs alone. He can also work as a web developer or webmaster, a site producer or graphic designer. Really, there are numerous interesting career opportunities for any talented web designer.
Responsibilities of a Web Designer
Generally speaking, a web designer is expected to maintain and update his employer's website, he might even be asked to build one. As far as maintenance, it is not at all uncommon for a website to crash, often due to increased traffic, and a designer must know how to address these problems.
Why go into web design?
As we mentioned, web design is a growing field and a talented designer who gains some experience will never want for work. Not only can you obtain employment from a business, but many designers also choose to go out on their own and earn their livings as freelance designers. This gives them the flexibility to choose projects that interest them and allows them to work when they want.