Translation of the article “Developing Your Signature Style as a Web Designer” by web designer Eric Karkovack about finding your own unique style in web design.
In design, as in society, there is pressure to imitate the most successful. Just like someone copying the image of their idol, clients often ask to adopt design elements (and sometimes the entire layout) from top sites.
This can make the client happy, and it will be useful for pumping in the design, but copying is not the most desirable task for creative people. Real job satisfaction comes when we do something create… Even if the new project is not 100% different from the one we created earlier, we still want to leave our unique handwriting in everything we do.
And in fact, there is nothing wrong with some consistency, consistency from project to project. A distinctive style is often the hallmark of creative people. Artists, actors and musicians are constantly using their “chips” in various projects. Web designers can do the same.
But how, in principle, can you find your own style in a world where there is so much imitation? Let s take a look at a few ways to help you with this.
Create something for yourself
One of the best ways to start developing your own style is to start your own project. Pick a topic that interests you and do something based on it. You can create a blog about your favorite sports team or a music review page. It doesn t matter what the topic will be, the main thing is that it evokes your creative impulses and a desire to work.
It is not necessary to give all your free time to this work, it is not necessary to submit it to the public. Your task is to understand and feel the freedom of work, which depends only on you, and which you completely control.
When no one tells you what to do, there is freedom to experiment, and you can try things that you did not even think about, fulfilling other people s orders. The author of the article personally felt the benefits of this approach. Working on his own projects, he discovered new tools and techniques, which he later applied in his main work.
Your personal project shouldn t be stressful. If working on your favorite topic has become just work, then you are too deep in the process. This work should help you relax and remember why you love creativity.
Master something new
One of the benefits of being a web designer is the many opportunities for ongoing learning. Just choose an interesting topic and you will find many online lessons and courses. The good news is that most of these courses and lessons are free. That is, even those on a budget can afford to educate themselves.
Taking time to study and improve your skills is one way to open yourself up to the profession. The more you learn, the faster you will become free to creatively express yourself and find your own style.
For example, content management systems like WordPress are very popular today, and we often work with other people s themes and plugins. These are great tools. They are useful and provide many opportunities, but they are not very helpful for creative expression.
But if you learn how to create themes and plugins, you can take control of the process. Instead of using someone else s vision, you will do exactly what you need.
It is good to be in demand, but sometimes you find yourself hostage to your employment. It s easy to get stuck in office work and start missing out on other important things. This lifestyle will not help you build your creative personality.
It is very important for the mind and body to get out of the work chair and radically change the environment. If you love being in nature, take some time off to go out of town. If nature is not yours, go shopping, theater or museum. The main thing is to move away from your daily routine and schedule.
The constant presence in the office and a large amount of work will sooner or later make you bored so much that you will simply become counterproductive. Find people and places that will inspire you. When it s time to get back to work, you will feel refreshed and ready to go.
Just be yourself
We often look at successful people and want to be like them. But it s all about perception. We can look with envy at someone else s design (text, lifestyle, etc.). We can even repeat their actions or work. But in reality, we always see only part of the picture.
A person can be admired for various reasons, but in the end he is still a person – just as imperfect as we are. And they themselves also probably admire someone and want to be able to do something that other people can do.
It s good to be inspired by someone else s example. Noveb – learn to trust yourself, believe in yourself and do not be afraid to go your own way, creating your own style.
Author: Eric Karkovack
Cover photo: ShutterStock