Where to Start?

Decide what area you would like to pursue.

Here are some questions that could help start you off:

Are you a designer, developer or both?

Do you want to be someone who specializes in one area or would you prefer to be a hybrid?

Is freelancing something you want to do forever, or is it a stepping stone to get experience for a full-time position?

Does the career path require certain languages, frameworks or specialist knowledge?

Searching out career paths and planning where you want to be in 3 / 5 years time could help save you time in the future and give you a clear path so you won’t feel lost.

Plan where and with what you would like to start with:

Have a look at tutorials and blogs that suit your path and find the easiest area to start in. To create websites, I started with HTML and CSS; I then moved onto JavaScript and jQuery, and learnt design principles along with some Adobe products.
As I found design and development was a good mix of art and logic, it felt like the correct way to go for myself. It really depends on what you want to make and where you would like to be in the future.

Learn the basics:

Start off with online tutorials, YouTube videos, books etc. Try each resource you find to see which you like the best or keep switching between them. It doesn’t matter which you use, it’s about getting yourself started. Most courses, paid or free, will start with the basics and go from there. However, look up the history of what you want to learn as this can give you more information on why it is used, not just how it is used.

Start your portfolio:

There are many ways to create one; if you want to make websites or go into programming then create a portfolio from scratch to practice your chosen languages. If you are just looking to learn design and don’t want to learn any languages, you can create your portfolio on different sites such as Behance, Adobe or GitHub, if you know how or want to learn to use it.

If you feel you will require a specific domain name and more storage, go with a hosting company for a small fee. I went with an eco-minded hosting company that uses renewable energy and free cooling to reduce energy usage and emissions. This was also part of my plan to learn how to deal with hosting for future clients.

There are many options for creating portfolios and where to host them so make sure you search thoroughly to find the best for you and your budget.


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