Recipes for success
FINE, a digital brand agency based in Portland, Oregon, offers its top tips for a successful career in web design Be uncomfortable
“Before I started code school, a friend advised that to improve in life you often have to be comfortable being uncomfortable. I spent a year or so making myself as uncomfortable as possible by pushing myself out of my comfort zone. There are, of course, differences between discomfort caused by flexing yourself and discomfort caused by a crappy situation. Being aware of those differences is important in keeping yourself happy and healthy on your quest of awesomeness.” – Julianna Green, developer.
“When you get stuck on a programming problem, take a break. This seems contrary to the notion that we should be hitting our heads against the wall, over and over again, until we break through. But often when you encounter a problem that you’ve been staring at for hours and can’t crack, shifting gears, finding a diversion or stopping entirely for a while is the best course of action to take. Usually, by the time that you’re ready to approach it again, you'll be able to see it from a new perspective.” – Aaron Ransley, senior developer.
Work from general to specific
“When I was studying drawing, one of my art teachers, Howard Neufeld, gave me the advice: ‘work from general to specific’. While he was specifically referring to figure drawing, the advice has stuck with me. In my design practice, keeping focus on the 'big picture' (general before specific) speaks to solving big layout problems before pushing pixels around. When starting a new digital project, I remind myself to start on paper, with concepts, before digging into typography or colour.” – Verity Kent, art director.