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nancy sv
04-25-2008, 06:31 AM
My husband is talking about maybe doing some freelance web design, but doesn't know where to start. Anybody have any idea where to look for info? Thanks!

Medievalist
04-25-2008, 06:33 AM
Unless he's really really up on hand coding HTML, CSS, Javascript and PHP or RubyOnRails or Pearl, and MySQL, it might not make sense.

You can get an idea of what people are looking for on CraigsList.

nancy sv
04-25-2008, 04:35 PM
Thanks! We'll check that out and see what's up.

Tirjasdyn
04-25-2008, 08:03 PM
I always do a lot of charity web design...that has landed me a few pay for jobs and eventually landed me a full time web designer job. It was all volunteer and word of month.

Many businesses without an in house designer will hirer any monkey with a keyboard because they wouldn't know the first thing about good code. It's all in the advertising

nancy sv
04-26-2008, 01:11 AM
I think he may end up just putting it out there and see what happens. If it happens, that's great. If not - it isn't that big of a deal. I do think he would do a good job for people, but I'm not sure if it's worth the hassle on our part.

SPMiller
04-26-2008, 02:17 AM
If he plans on doing any nontrivial projects, graphic art and logo design are going to be a big deal.

He may have to subcontract those parts depending on his skills, but I'm sure he can handle that.

scottVee
04-26-2008, 02:29 AM
A good start is to build a bunch of web sites of his own. It's almost impossible to get web development work unless you have samples of past work to show.

Don't forget that web development is a large category of related skills, as Medeival and SPMiller pointed out. From HTML coding to graphic design to database management. Many programming languages and tools are involved.

Basic business skills are needed, particularly project management. It's very easy to stumble and drive away potential projects. And beginners make all kinds of blunders that you eventually learn to avoid ... I wouldn't even know where to start with that.

He should build some sample websites and if that doesn't drive him nuts, find some friends who need sites built ... and if he's not insane after that, he may have what it takes.

nancy sv
04-26-2008, 04:23 AM
Thanks for your thoughts! I think he's decided to start very small and just build a few for friends of ours in order to have some samples.

Matera the Mad
04-26-2008, 04:42 AM
It can come with headaches, believe me. He should get things clear from the start with clients about updates.

Many people who want websites don't know how to do thing one. They may need help getting a domain name and finding a host, then you find out they don't even know how to access their e-mail. Lotsa fun :D

It is good to have a portfolio of a few sites. I do volunteer sites anyway, it's a nice way to get links, heh-heh.

L M Ashton
04-26-2008, 05:23 AM
What makes it all more complicated is that, until IE 8, Internet Explorer is not standards compliant, so a web designer - if they're competent - essentially ends up with one design for standards-compliant browsers and another for IE, or otherwise tricking things out (I'm not an expert in this area, so...). But now with IE 8, designs that work with IE will break under IE 8. It can get very messy very fast.

Matera the Mad
04-26-2008, 06:16 AM
Yeah, and most so-called webdesigners don't give an aerial sex act if their product displays well in anything but Idiot Exploder and anything but default settings. With my eyesight, I get to see the worst of it. rant rant rant Fools with Flash and FrontPage Cowboys get most of the odd jobs anyway.

scottVee
04-26-2008, 11:35 AM
More good comments. Especially the one about updates. A website is never finished, but clients can tire of paying for them. Many people are completely unaware that websites take work, or have any value. If you look around, it's easy to find people who "need" a website done, but a high percentage are so clueless it's not worth the headache. Better clients are organized, know what they need and what they don't, can outline their ideas in some sensible way, and know that time is worth money. Just avoid people who have no plan, or ones who want copies of existing websites for cheap, or ones who just think they'll throw something on the web and money will come pouring in out of nowhere. Lots of ways to go wrong ... all the more reason to be very organized and knowledgeable yourself.

nancy sv
04-26-2008, 06:31 PM
Thanks everyone!

Tirjasdyn
04-28-2008, 07:36 PM
What makes it all more complicated is that, until IE 8, Internet Explorer is not standards compliant, so a web designer - if they're competent - essentially ends up with one design for standards-compliant browsers and another for IE, or otherwise tricking things out (I'm not an expert in this area, so...). But now with IE 8, designs that work with IE will break under IE 8. It can get very messy very fast.

You mean hopefully with IE8....

I wouldnt' put it past them to just change the hack character again and call it compliant.

But then that's why conditional comments are our friends.