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  1. #1
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    Question Best way of designing a website

    I'm good at programming. What i lack is "designing".

    I can write interactive code in PHP, but i can't bring up the look and feel of the webpage. I tried from various sources but could not reach to a point of satisfaction in this field.

    Currently, I write HTML/CSS in any simple text editors like Notepad++, etc. but that does not bring up a professional, modern feel in the webpage.

    On the whole, I want to begin web designing (only designing), already having a basic knowledge of CSS/HTML, but at a level far away from what I'm doind right now. I want to improvise my current skills so that I could design good User Interface for the users.

    Kindly suggest me where should i start from, like whether i should start with Photoshop (but, I'm a total noob in Photoshop), or Dreamweaver, or....

  2. #2
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    ralph.m's Avatar
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    Hi pageonweb. Welcome to the forums.

    SitePoint has some nice design books—including books on Photoshop, but also just principles of beautiful design—so those might be worth a look. But besides that, I would recommend you closely study website you like. Look at how they were created, what factors make them look nice, and you will learn a lot from that. Image if you were creating those designs from scratch, how you might go about ti etc. I find that really useful. I'm sure that's how a lot of great artists learn some of their craft—by studying closely the work of others.

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    Currently, I write HTML/CSS in any simple text editors like Notepad++, etc. but that does not bring up a professional, modern feel in the webpage.
    Oh yes it does - if you write the correct code. Many people here use Notepad++ to code sites. The final appearance is down to your imagination and inspiration, not the editor.

    Look at sites you like or template sites, use them to inspire you with ideas, and write the code that gives the result you want to see. Getting the inspiration is always the hard point for me.

    Photoshop will NOT enable you to suddenly become artistic and produce inspired designs! If only life was that easy!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr John View Post
    Oh yes it does - if you write the correct code. Many people here use Notepad++ to code sites. The final appearance is down to your imagination and inspiration, not the editor.

    Look at sites you like or template sites, use them to inspire you with ideas, and write the code that gives the result you want to see. Getting the inspiration is always the hard point for me.

    Photoshop will NOT enable you to suddenly become artistic and produce inspired designs! If only life was that easy!
    Thanks for the advice John. I'm actually developing a social networking site with a totally different concept.
    I've developed something very simple and the problem is "i can't go beyond this design".. I want to design something similar to Facebook's chat (sidebar).
    Can you suggest me, how can i go for that...

  5. #5
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    PageOnWeb,

    I'm slightly confused as to exactly what you are asking.

    Are you looking for help in deciding on a design, that is, choosing colours, typefaces, layout, and other stuff like that?

    Or, are you asking for advice on implementing a design that you have already chosen? In other words, do you need help with the relevant CSS and HTML?

    I'm sure you'll agree that these are two quite different problems, and you'll need different skills in each case. If you could clarify this point, it will help us to point you to the right answer.

    Mike

  6. #6
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    pageonweb wrote:
    I'm good at programming. What i lack is "designing".
    "No man is an island"
    - John Donne

    Imagine an artist coming to you with a sketch of a beautiful website and asking for your help creating the code to bring it to life...

    Now imagine yourself sitting down with an artist, describing your concept for what your website idea will do and who it will serve, and a few days later the artist returns with a handful of sketches of what it could visually look like...

    If you can turn your favorite sketch into code, then your problem is solved.

    You will have to pay the artist. But if you can find an artist that wants to create their own website, you could simply trade services: their artistic help for your coding help.

    With this sort of thing, finding local help is best. The face-to-face interaction and the talking and the questioning are important parts of the design process.

    Good luck!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by willwilkinson View Post
    you can design a website by using html,css,photoshop and dreamweaver but if you want to implement a website you need to knowledge about coding llike in php, javascript etc.
    Not exactly true. You can design a site in Photoshop or DW, but neither is necessary. HTML and CSS can not only be used to design the site, but are vital to the implementation of it. You can build a site without PHP or JavaScript, but you can't build a site without HTML and CSS.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by pageonweb View Post
    I'm good at programming. What i lack is "designing".

    I can write interactive code in PHP, but i can't bring up the look and feel of the webpage. I tried from various sources but could not reach to a point of satisfaction in this field.

    Currently, I write HTML/CSS in any simple text editors like Notepad++, etc. but that does not bring up a professional, modern feel in the webpage.

    On the whole, I want to begin web designing (only designing), already having a basic knowledge of CSS/HTML, but at a level far away from what I'm doind right now. I want to improvise my current skills so that I could design good User Interface for the users.

    Kindly suggest me where should i start from, like whether i should start with Photoshop (but, I'm a total noob in Photoshop), or Dreamweaver, or....
    Man, I cringe when I read this. You don't learn design from Photoshop. Or Dreamweaver. Those are tools. You learn how to design by studying the craft of design and reading about it and practicing it.

    You can start developing a sense for good design by copying the work of critically acclaimed designers and taking their work apart piece by piece. You have to ask yourself why their design looks so much better than yours and get down to the basic elements and principles of design.

    I'm tired of the B.S. people are passing off as design. I don't even work as a designer anymore and I'm tired of working with designers who don't even know the ABC's.

    Colour, Value, Line, Texture, Form, Shape, Space, Harmony, Unity, Movement, Balance, Emphasis, Rhythm, Variety, Gradation, Repetition, Proportion, Proximity, Contrast, The golden mean, composition, etc...

    These should be things you know better than the back of your hand if you want to call yourself a designer and yet 99% of the designers you will meet couldn't explain half of them.

  9. #9
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    I recommend to learn Photoshop first and learn how to design website Layouts. But if you want to design User Interfaces, I feel you can do it with HTML and CSS itself.

  10. #10
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    Will you please suggest me tools that can make web designing easy? Also suggest best tutorial to learn web designing.

  11. #11
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    You can go to the following websites and start designing your custom Pages. You will get a clear idea about webdesigning.

    Joomla
    opensourceCMS
    drupal
    typolight

  12. #12
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    Designing is not fully dependent on your Photoshop skills anymore actually.
    You see a lot of people using HTML5/CSS now a days and minimal images. The HTML5/CSS adds the structure and colors for you. Not only is it more efficient in terms of time to create the site but your site loads faster.

  13. #13
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    You need to be well versed with softwares like photoshop and dreamweaver to learn website designing. You can bookmark the websites that you like and learn from them. If you are creative its an added bonus for website designer. Of course your coding skills are important too.

  14. #14
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    With internet as the platform for the expansion and development of various businesses, the Website Designing is becoming very important.
    W3schools is the free place to learn web languages by w3, an international organization, for setting a web standards. Here you can learn basics of all web languages and test your skills.

  15. #15
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    ralph.m's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyCash11 View Post
    W3schools is the free place to learn web languages by w3, an international organization ...
    No! w3schools has nothing to do with the w3c. It also has a bad reputation for having a lot of inaccuracies, so beware.

  16. #16
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    You have to design the website using various designing tools and technologies. Make sure that the design relates to your product.

  17. #17
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    Looks like the OP has lost interest in this, so let's leave it here.


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