A Web Designer’s New Year’s Resolution

2014 is just at our doorstep, but before all the countdowns, fireworks, the food and the singing of Auld Lang Syne while drinking a nice brew of beer, let us think of ourselves and find what we can change. Let’s make our New Year’s resolutions as web designers.

These resolutions will improve us as web designers. As we mature and grow older, we, too, must progress for if we do not evolve, we die. The Internet, which is the platform where we do our work, is vastly changing and improving. That is why we should do the same.

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(photo from Kenny Teo)

Without much ado, here’s 1stwebdesigner’s version of New Year’s resolution for web designers.

Use Creative and Appropriate Fonts.

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(photo from Andy Schaufler)

It has been discussed a lot of times that using the correct fonts for a particular design is very important. It determines the consistency and creativity of the whole output. With this in mind, let us, for 2014, use creative fonts while taking note that readability is still the main focus.

For this, you may read the following:

Revolutionize Your Color Scheming

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(photo from Neal Stratton)

Most designers pick up a certain color scheme for all of their designs. It’s an inevitable curse for a designer. We tend to put something we like. For 2014, how about creating a design that does not involve your favorite colors?

For this, you may read the following:

Say No to Clients

This is the most difficult thing to do, especially for starting freelancers. Saying NO would mean turning down money. But, as a designer, you have to put in mind that you have to say no at times. You have to turn down money, for once, because you can’t finish the project, nor will you enjoy a little bit of it. That is the point of being a freelancer in the first place. You get to choose what you want to do and what you do not want to do. So, next time a client offers you something you can’t finish, turn it down. There is nothing wrong with that. What’s bad is that you say yes but not finish anything at all.

For this, you may read the following:

Learn How to Write a Copy

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(Photo from greencorfu.com)

Okay, you might think that you are a web designer and what is the point of learning how to write? Well, you have to learn how to sell your services. And nothing, I repeat, nothing is better, more efficient and more affordable than copywriting. With that being said, why don’t you learn how to do it, instead of hiring another person? Right?

For this, you may read this:

Make Original Designs

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(Photo from orgutcayli)

Originality is a key aspect in web design. Though technically, nothing is original, you should always try to re-invent your designs. Take inspiration from a lot of websites, projects and resources on the Internet, and from these inspirations, you get the best of them and put them in one design. Now, that is original.

For this, you may read this:

Learn New Things

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(Photo from CollegeDegrees360)

As I have said in the introduction, if we do not evolve, we die. The Internet has given a lot of new trends, ideas and information over the past years and as web designers, we should take what will be beneficial from our designs. Learn new techniques on how to become more productive, creative and earn more money. Learn from tutorials like these:

Start a Blog

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(Photo from ambodia4kidsorg)

Blogging may be one of the least concerns you have in mind as a designer. However, no matter how less prioritized blogging is in the world of web design, it is a very potent tool in venting out your daily frustrations and everyday quirks, and monitor your progress in the near future. Think of it as a daily journal where you could record everything that happens to you so you can assess yourself afterwards. This does not improve your design but it makes you a better designer.

For this, you may read:

Update Your Portfolio and Your Résumé

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(Photo from peakforce.net)

It’s 2014! I’m sure the past year has given you a fair amount of workload. Put your best projects in your résumé and portfolio. When clients see this, you will be given a great deal of advantage against the other prospects because you have put your best projects in the front line.

Read this for more information:

Be Organized and Time-conscious

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(Photo by David)

Time is of the essence. Learning how to manage your time and organizing it will be advantageous for you next year. With the impending workload you will receive, you might as well be prepared for it. Learn how to manage your time with your projects and put your best in everything!

Have a Niche

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Photo from  Pete Prodoehl

For bloggers, niches are very important because these define who they are as writers. It’s great to be known as ‘the best at something’. People crave for the services of experts because these experts studied, practiced and did extensive research in their chosen fields for a long time. As web designers, we could also be like that. We can specialize in a particular brand of design or coding language. For this, we should learn and re-learn a specific field and become a master at it. Remember, being a king of something is still better than being a jack at everything.

Teach Others

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(Photo from Contra Costa Times)

One of the most fulfilling things as a designer is to become a teacher. Having an apprentice who will continue your philosophy, style and way of living as a designer is nothing short of being great. So on 2014, teach someone!

Take a Vacation

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(photo from  degghi)

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. For 2014, make it a point that you take a break. Find a place where you could simply unwind and replenish your creative juices. Soothe yourself with a week off work and find inner peace. You will be surprised at how refreshed you are when you come back. Remember, any computer needs to reboot or refresh at times.

Design Outside Your Comfort Zone

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(Photo from bentremblay)

Try this one for once. Going out of your comfort zone will lead you to discover your hidden potentials. As a web designer, you shouldn’t be limited to where you are comfortable at. Try out things you haven’t tried before. You’ll never know, you might become a better designer because of this.

Make Mistakes

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(Photo from Mike Gifford)

The 14th resolution for 2014 is to make mistakes. For this coming year, you will delve into a lot of projects and, of course, you will make mistakes, some minor, some grave – but you should put in mind that these mistakes are learning experiences that will make you a better designer and person. So next time you commit an error, accept and learn from it.

Conclusion

There you have it, the 14 New Year’s resolution for 2014! We hope that you could follow up on these resolutions all year long. We know that it’s hard to keep up, but we’ll try to help you out. Remember, we’re all in this together. So, in behalf of 1stwebdesigner.com, happy new year and let us complete our resolutions together.

What are your New Year’s resolutions as a web designer?

Rudolph Musngi

Rudolph is a geek. He loves reading: books, blogs and even nutrition facts found at the back of products. He loves to read interesting internet stuff. Since joining 1stwebdesigner last year, Rudolph has written several articles that concerns Typography, Wordpress, Freelance Lifehacks, Graphic Design and Showcase of Beautiful Web Designs. He also write poems, movie reviews and he puts them in his blog together with rants and some daily life updates.

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Comments

  1. says

    Loved this article and definitely bookmarked it to be a reminder/resource throughout the year. I don’t agree with the Copywriter portion because I am horrible at writing…just not my forte. But agree with making sure to update portfolio. As designers it seems that our own work seems to always get put on the back burner :(

  2. says

    Nice blog, Rudolph. It’s really inspirational. I most liked ‘Say No to Clients’ & ‘Start a Blog’. These two points really make sense. As i know web designing is one of the competitive markets on the web. Several projects come and go but as you said ‘You get to choose what you want to do and what you do not want to do.’ that is more important. And second, blog. It is the best platform to showcase talent and attract audience. Share your talent with the world and world will notice you. Thanks for nice post.

  3. says

    I usually don’t make resolutions, but the title of your article intrigued me. I’m glad I read it. It gave me some much needed motivation to give a long, hard look at my current site and my work practices. Found many of the links useful, too.

    Here’s to 2014, New Year, new beginnings…and hopefully, new clients.

  4. mohannad Khasawneh says

    Hmmm I was actually looking for some kind of a resolution , I will definitely use some of these :)
    Happy New Year !

  5. says

    #14 isn’t a problem since I make a lot of mistakes :)

    I really want to make original designs and figure out what niche I want to focus on.

    Thanks for these and happy new year Rudolph!

  6. says

    Great,
    Nice work Rudolph and I’ve been so reluctant thinking I won’t be chanced to maintain it but I think I’ll give it a shot this year and All are points is very good Happy New Year to you too.. ;)

    • Rudolph Musngi says

      Thanks! Happy 2014 too. What things would you like to change about yourself (or your designs this year? If I may ask?) :)

  7. says

    Nice work Rudolph and a Happy New Year to you too.
    I always had this fear that I cant write well and that my English is pathetic. So I never tried writing stuff. I always hired some freelance writer to do it for me. Well, my new year resolution is that I will start practicing writing without worrying how stupid I sound until I reach awesomeness.
    Inspired.
    Happy new year to all. :)

    • Kalpesh says

      Hi Pawas,

      Your english will not matter if you use some free and paid tool then definitely you reach to that awesomeness.
      Just invest some more time in it.

      Have a great year! :-)

  8. says

    Thanks a lot for this. I’m putting most of them down on my to-do list. About owning a blog, I’ve been so reluctant thinking I won’t be chanced to maintain it but I think I’ll give it a shot this year. I’ve also be thinking of doing really cheap websites with quality from 1st – 20th January, 2014 just to get more clients. I hope it’s not much of a bad idea

    • Rudolph Musngi says

      No worries Joseph! Owning a blog is not an easy task but once you get to learn how great it is to just write and vent out what your mind blabbers, it’s sort of fun. I started a blog just a few months ago too. I’m basically putting everything that happens to me, or everything that I want people to know. You can read my thoughts at http://rudolphmusngi.com/. :)

  9. Tim says

    “Learn How to Write a Copy”
    That is the funniest thing I have ever read. You, as a writer, should realize what is wrong with this subheading, right?

    Anyway, a good copywriter is harder to come by than many people think – as this article illustrates. Everyone thinks that copywriting is easy. Writing engaging content that also integrates keywords in a defined amount of space can be extremely difficult.

    “And nothing, I repeat, nothing is better, more efficient and more affordable than copywriting.”
    I wish you would go into detail here. So you’re saying nothing is better than copywriting? Nothing is more affordable than copywriting? What exactly do you mean? This is just bad copywriting. I just bought a taco at Taco Bell for under a buck. That is pretty affordable. It also tasted a lot better than copywriting.
    Maybe I should just eat my words?