For anyone that does not like change, the next big thing in tech., or new gadgets and gizmos, a career in web design is likely not a good choice for you.
In 2002 when I started playing around with this new-to-me language called HTML, I was a bit naive to say the least, but I think the same might apply to everyone else involved with the early days of the web. As a young apsiring-to-be designer I loved to draw freehand, create band posters, and design “cool” logos inspired by skateboarding brands. In the early days relying mostly on a god-given talent, with a little skill polishing here and there, my job was almost easy and most certainly fun. The world of design was full of set parameters that were known beginning to end, an expectation a designer never had to question. When a designer put something on paper, it stayed that way, but that all changed fast.
Having gained the experience designing in fixed parameters and creating for the fun of it provided an underlaying reason I do what I what do. That helps me today, but it also means I must constantly challenge myself to think different and explore new possibilities. Designers who choose to work on the web no longer have the pleasure of knowing exactly how our work will look to the audience. We must design focusing on elements of style, the message, color, and type, and rely less on the rigidity of structure. We must continue to explore and learn, not how to create, that doesn’t go anywhere, but how to execute through new mediums.
To a client, hearing your designer say “we’ll learn as we go” might sound a bit scary, especially from people involved in ancient industries where practitioners perform the same duties today that they have for hundreds of years prior. After all, when you hire a professional you expect solutions carried out with precision. The web is no different in that respect, when hiring a designer you should expect excellence, only the exception here is when a professional claims to know everything about everything, look elsewhere. Thrive on those willing and eager to learn. The web is an ever changing landscape, it’s a playground for designers, a vehicle for authors, a storefront for businesses, a social platform, a secure place for banking, a meeting place, a place to educate & entertain ourselves and our children, it’s where people today connect in society. The web in just a few short years has found a place in most everyones lives, and while the future of the web is an unpredictable one, I’m very confident predicting it will be great. To ensure this however we as users, consumers, and creators are all responsible and must be committed to learn as we go.