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General Discussion

Melina Q
Melina Q
1,479 Points

Need help developing/improving my skills.

I've taken some classes on web design before signing up to TeamTreehouse but I never really did anything with it.

Here's the thing: I don't know how to start. I was thinking about finding pretty basic and easy websites so I could copy and practice (obviously that would be just for me to improve my skills not thinking about actually copying and uploading it as an actual website). I think this would be a good idea, because it'd let me compare how I would do something vs what the designer did. The thing is that I'm struggling with finding websites that are easy and interesting enough so I don't get discouraged. I've found a few that look simple and basic but it turns out they aren't.

I haven't been able to finish any of those projects because of this. Also, sometimes I'm not sure what would be the best way of doing something since there's usually a lot of ways. I know this is something that'll come with experience, but I wish there was a place where we can post our own projects (not TT) and have more experienced people give their feedbacks on how we could improve it or what we did wrong.

How and when did you feel confident enough to start building a website?. Currently I'm on the Web Designer Track and also doing some projects and I don't feel confident at all with my skills or I feel I couldn't be able to finish a simple website on my own. What's a good website model/example to copy as the first one? What do you do to practice?

Any advice will be very appreciated. Thanks!

4 Answers

Dennis Castillo
Dennis Castillo
16,018 Points

Hello Melina, How are you to day?

Well on my side, some times copying is good way to get some "idea" how it is done "but not all the time". you have to understand how it's works bcoz there will be time that it is more challenge than you expected it is just like expect the unexpected , understanding how it is done and how it is works is the key to open your mind or imagination to think great ideas if you dont then it is natural that you will lost your confident. 2nd, focus, persistence and patience also a great things once you're in a middle of your project, understand, learn and don't forget to ask of your difficulties from other people that has experience in the web industries. 3rd, keep on your track... what you're doing right now... And always learn the basic coz basic is the key for everything. And als I feel confident to build a website if I have an idea on format, new way how to execute the new concepts I keep open my mind for everythings observe in and out side of my surroundings coz there will be great things will come up "hear see's" yo know.

Hope that's help my friend, Good Luck and God Bless,

My experience has been that people who are good at what they do will never be completely satisfied with anything they build. As you learn more, you'll keep finding better ways of doing things. But that's a good sign if that's how you feel. In pretty much any aspect of life, the people who are the best at something are the people who say they're not very good and that they still have a lot to learn. The people who boast about their skills in something usually aren't that good at it.

In terms of building websites to practice, I'd recommend coming up with some topic that interests you and starting from scratch to build a simple website. Then, just keep improving it and adding new features. I think you'll learn more about the different ways to do things by building something on your own than trying to copy something else. It's like math class in school; it's easy to follow along with the teacher's examples on the board, but it's much harder to do it yourself. But, unless you can do it yourself without a guide to follow, you really don't know it.

As far as doing something the "best" way, there often isn't a best way. There are some bad ways of doing things and some better ways of doing it, but everything has a ton of ways of doing it and it'll usually come down to finding your preferred mix of advances of a method versus its disadvantages.

We all get discouraged when we start something new because we want to be able to immediately do complicated things, but no one goes from zero knowledge to expert overnight. No matter how good you are at something, you'll always be learning more and figuring out better ways to do things. If you wait until you "know enough" before you start putting your skills into practice, you may never feel like you know enough and it may be a long, long time before you actually start building things.

James Barnett
James Barnett
39,199 Points

I'd suggest you go through the HTML & CSS exercises on pairuptocode.com.

For the final exercise copy cat I'd suggest you do basecamp.com.

Melina Q
Melina Q
1,479 Points

This is all great advice. I'm so glad I asked

James, pairuptocode.com was exactly what I was looking for and will definitely start those exercises tomorrow.

Thanks everyone for your input, they were very useful :)