Web designers and web developers are more needed now than ever. A lot of people are changing careers just to hop on this trend. And no, it doesn’t involve going to three or four years of college. Most companies hire web designers and developers based not on the school they went to, but on their skills and portfolio. Do you know where I’m going? I bet you do!
There are professionals in every field buying books or enrolling with online courses with one goal in mind: to either shift careers to web design or web development. Professionals like registered nurses, scientists, marketers, lawyers, you name it. It doesn’t stop at that, even grade school and high school students are discovering the wonders of web design and development both at school and as a hobby.
So, do you know someone who wants to change careers? It’s never too late!
Image credit: Bigstockphoto
People Who Changed Their Career to Web Design
I have the pleasure of working with Spencer at 1WD.tv for over a year now, and one beautiful thing I learned about him is that he wasn’t always a web designer and developer. He was a criminal defense attorney in Chicago and his track record is great, as well as the money involved.
Imagine the number of years spent studying in law school and the extra stress of studying for the bar exams, pretty unimaginable, actually if you’ve never been there. But still Spencer decided to pursue web work because he found out that the potential here is virtually limitless and colorful.
Right now, he’s bent into teaching people how to be rid of the shackles of 9-5 jobs and become a freelance web designer/developer. And he’s been pretty successful at it, I must say.
Bryan Zavestoski graduated with an Economics degree from the University of California in 2011. But instead of pursuing a career with his degree, he chose to follow his heart. He decided to tinker around with stuff and do creative work.
At first he learned how to design through AppStack and soon decided to pursue learning HTML and CSS. Through an online learning platform Teamtreehouse, he learned how to become a UX/UI designer.
Now he is accepting freelance work. When he is not designing graphics, he is turning websites into beautiful masterpieces.
Brandon Kidd has been working on the web for over a decade now as a digital marketer. Now, he is working as a freelance designer and developer and has successfully launched his own web design agency called Factory Web Design.
Before switching careers, and even before studying how to build websites from scratch, Brandon already had a background in HTML and CSS – mainly by tweaking existing websites for marketing.
Then he discovered Treehouse. Since going to school is out of the question, given the high tuition fees and time that needs to be allotted, Treehouse was a gift. He learned CSS3, Ruby on Rails, PHP, and everything he needed to know on how to build a website.
Soon he started to accept freelance works, which ended up being a collaboration between other freelancers and his clients. This gave birth to Factory Web Design, a design agency that is composed of freelance designers and developers.
Dilys Sun was an Economics undergraduate in Stanford back in 2012 when she decided to learn how to code and design. Right now, she’s working for AirPair as a technology consultant where she produces content about technology and programming for their users.
In 2013, when Codecademy won a Crunchie award for the education category, it was Dilys Sun who accepted the award, who was still a student then.
Her adventure is still on the first pages of her new found career, but so far everything is looking great for her.
If you have been keeping tabs on what’s currently happening to online technology, then most likely you have already heard of Sam Fellig, the founder of Outgrow.me. Outgrow.me is a marketplace where successfuly crowdfunded products are gathered and are available for purchase or pre-order.
Before this, Sam Fellig was just a regular technology enthusiast who ate his breakfast while watching TED talks and backed up projects on Kickstarter and Indiegogo. He had zero technical knowledge about how websites are designed and developed.
Then he discovered Codecademy, and from there on he learned how to develop websites from scratch. That and his passion for technology gave birth to Outgrow.me.
His advice to people who want to change careers? Just start!
Learn for free:
Learn for a fee:
Thinking of doing the same? You are not alone.
During my research I have chanced upon people who asked the same question, “I’m XX and I want to change careers to web design/development. Is it too late?” or “I don’t have a degree/certifications, can I be a web designer/developer?”
The answer to these questions is yes, of course!
In fact, anyone can become a web designer and/or developer with just three things: a computer, internet connection, and determination.
If you noticed, four out of five of the people mentioned here learned from online resources, three of which are free. Spencer, on the other hand, learned through his curiosity, tinkering with websites and learning the building blocks of each through trial and error and with the help of books.
You see what I’m getting at? There is always a way. It doesn’t matter if you have a college degree or not, 40 or 60 years old, technically savvy or a little behind the times, it doesn’t matter. If you want to learn web design and development, then all you have to do is pick up a book about HTML or Photoshop or learn from several online schools for free.