For months now, I have been hearing of these fantastic workshops hosted by the not-for-profit organization: Ladies Learning Code. I decided it was about time I try my hand at one of their workshops. Coming from a background in social media, and working as an Account Manager here at The Blog Studio, I thought I could take a refresher course in development or, learn something new. When I saw the Intro to Web Design workshop pop-up, I knew I wanted in.
Having moderate knowledge of Photoshop (there comes a time when even I have had to make a hilarious Facebook event graphic for a friend’s birthday), I was excited to get my feet wet and actually try to design a website. The day kicked off at 10am at the George Brown St. James campus. Immediately, I felt like I was back in University, getting ready to settle into a day at the lab. Our instructor for the day, Ricardo, was enthusiastic, encouraging, and extremely helpful with even the most basic of questions. The lab was also filled with an amazing roster of mentors, who were all quick to help whenever anyone had a question.
Diving headfirst into a complicated program like Photoshop can be intimidating. But, with the help of the Ladies Learning Code crew, mentors and instructors, it seemed like a breeze. In no time, I was masking images, designing in the 960 grid and understanding the importance of clearly labelling and organizing my layers (as I quickly learned, this can get messy very fast!). Not only did I learn how to utilize basic Photoshop tools, but we also learned design theory: why CMYK is used for print, and RGB is used for web design, how colour hexes can slightly differ in development and the importance of choosing the right font for your site.
The day was split up with a lunch break which was a great opportunity to chat and network with fellow LLCers. The range of reasons why people were attending was broad: touching up on their skills, wanting to design their own website, and generally getting started in web design. After getting the basics down, we were left to our own devices to style the body of our website. I went from feeling like a total novice to a lean, mean, designing machine (or something of that nature). The takeaways were fantastic: a How-To slideshow of everything we had learned, stock images, and a sense of accomplishment. It was an all around pleasant, educational and informative day thanks to the excellent organization and the spirits of the instructors and mentors. I am looking forward to digging deeper in my newly found design skills – and seeing what else I can learn from future Ladies Learning Code workshops!
For more information visit their site here.