Do I have a chance?
I've been designing for around 6 months, on and off with school, and was wondering if my website would stand any sort of chance, enough to possibly make a little bit of money. The purpose of the website is for me to create website templates, and then put them on my website to sell or have people download for free if they want. I'm 16 years old, and am wondering if this is a pointless task, or should I continue? I guess it would improve my designing skills, however, with things such as wordpress becoming more and more popular, should I go into a completely new field and maybe design websites as more of a hobby and not think of it as something I could do as a career?
I removed the link to your website image as its not really pertinent to the question unless you want a website (or element) review and we have a special section fort that.
Regarding your question as to whether web design is a good career move or not is a hard question to answer as it all depends on how hard you are prepared to work and how good you are at what you do. Obviously these days with mobile usage increasing there is always room for skilled designers/coders who can tackle responsive web design but there are also a lot of people chasing the same jobs.
Most freelancers start off part time and build up a following of clients and can then gauge whether its worthwhile to go full time. You should really start to build up a portfolio of clients (friends, families and local businesses) and perhaps specialise in one area to give you an edge over competitors.
Do you need a university degree? Or is it just generally a good thing to have?
A degree is always useful to have but may not always be useful for the chosen profession but does show that you have the ability to obtain a degree.
I don't really know what the actual figures are but I guess you would find equal amounts of people being self-taught and those that have degrees in design or computer science/programming.
I'm not really the best person to answer this as I'm at the other end of the scale and am semi-retired. I taught myself CSS html and have no degrees but managed to make myself useful enough to get work when I wanted.
There's a little bit of information here that may be useful.
Perhaps some younger members can join in the discussion with some hints and tips :)
Congrats on starting off your career plans at sixteens that definitely puts ahead in the game.
I am going to add that even when it comes to wordpress you can create your own themes.
You can make each as individual as you wish.
Also you don't really specify what interests you the most, is it design or developing. As it is you'll notice that the more you get into the wider your fields and options get.
Degrees can be good, especially as come companies. (intel for example) want candidates w/degrees. However, they are not always necesary and on the flip side are possible loan/debt loads.
And higher ed can be fun, make friends, network, find new experiences.
A bit early in your life to think you don't have a chance really ;-)
work, be creative and fun. Don't just rely on the net. see also who else in your community could use your work.
I started learning CSS around 6 months ago, give or take a month, and started HTML when I was 12, although I was never any good at it, lol. I'll look into that site later today, thanks! :]
Originally Posted by Paul O'B
For now I'm more interested in designing, although I haven't done much developing as of now (I do plan to learn how to develop though).
Originally Posted by pdxSherpa
Thanks for the tips. :)
Check out Pat Flynn over at Smart Passive Income and Spencer Haws at Niche Pursuits - these guys are very successful Internet Marketers and make great money through affiliate advertising.
I started making money on the Internet about a year ago. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication but can be done. You are still very young (that's a positive) so the ball is in your court - you could make your millions and lose it all before you are 20 :)
Best of luck - I think it is very cool that you are thinking about this at such a young age!
I would recommend that you hone your design skills by taking some lynda.com courses. That way you can get a better idea as to whether this is something that you really want to pursue as a career.
I think you can continue with this website and check out if this will make a profit to you. If you have interest in web designing, then you should make it as a career and not think of anything else. I think web designing is a good career option.
What Paul O'B says is true, you have a chance but you must be prepared to work for it. Having a passion for what you do also helps extensively. I personally left school at a young age due to an anxiety disorder so I have no school degrees, however I went on to get a Diploma in Interactive Digital Media, now running a business in my small town doing Web Design and Development. I've got the passion to continue learning this vast and wonderful market of web design.
The reason I share that is to show that everyone can get to where they want to be and do what they do if you work hard. Do what you love doing and the money will come!
I remember this dude at 13 coming on to these forums and asking a similar question having just pulled Fireworks out of the box. Evidence that hard work pays off if you're needing motivation :)