It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been working in web design or how naturally talented you are, all designers have room for improvement and should be focused on continuing to learn. This growth looks different for different people, but if you’re looking to up your design game, here are a few ways to get started:
Be open to feedback
It’s not always easy to hear someone critique your work, especially if it’s a project you’re proud of. But instead of focusing on the fact that someone has something less-than-glowing to say about your work, focus on the content of their thoughts.
Do you agree with what they’re saying? Do you need them to elaborate about why they feel this way? If you agree with this feedback, consider how you might apply it as you begin work on an upcoming project.
You should also keep in mind that just because someone has feedback to share, doesn’t necessarily mean you need to act on it. Everyone’s entitled to their own opinion, but ultimately your work needs to feel like your own. If you don’t agree with what that person is saying, you’re under no obligation to implement it.
Read industry blogs and stay up-to-date on trends
To continue delivering your most relevant work, you’ll want to know about industry shifts and trends that might impact what your customers need from you. There are a bunch of ways to do this, including reading industry blogs or magazines. You can also follow other designers on social media to see what they’re talking about on these platforms.
Keep practicing, even when you’re not getting paid
Some designers fall into this trap of only working when there’s a paycheck attached to the project. While you’ll want to use your time wisely, of course, don’t forget to practice your skills, even if you’re not working on a specific project. Playing around just for fun allows you to experiment in ways that you wouldn’t if you were working on a specific project for a playing client. Feel free to get creative, zany, and experimental. This is one of the best ways to learn and improve!
Don’t be afraid to use other designers as a guide
While you don’t want to blatantly copy others’ work, every designer gets inspiration from their peers. It’s perfectly acceptable to check out other designers’ efforts to see what you like, what you don’t like, and what kinds of elements you might want to incorporate into your next project.
Look at how far you’ve come
Designers tend to be self-critical, but it’s important to take time every so often to stop and appreciate how much your work has evolved. Look at projects you worked on a few years or months back and let yourself feel proud of the growth you’ve made as a designer.
I love chatting with up-and-coming designers! Feel free to drop me a line at Keith@BuckleUpStudios.com!