While I'm technically no stranger to the internet (Remember screechy dial up sounds? You've Got Mail?), I am have quite the gap in my web design resume. When I was much younger, I taught myself HTML by reading the source of websites, and eventually made my own very simple frames page hosted on Geocities. I eventually got rollover images figured out, but the real highlight of that era was getting snowfall in CSS, and then tricking it into running bottom to top so it was stardust instead. What a time to be alive and poking around the world wide web!
Flash forward to now-ish, where web design is now drag and drop elements, in-depth coding classes can be mostly side-stepped, and the individual or small group startup can get themselves up and running without too many hoops.
In Spring of 2020, I was tasked with getting an English-language website up and running, within a specified budget. We would need to do virtually everything from scratch: copy, content, layout, design... After exploring many an option of agencies and feeling mostly overwhelmed by prices and underwhelmed by packages, I did my homework to determine what these proposals and timelines were actually implying, and I decided to dabble in bit of designing a website myself. Sanken Inc is still a pretty small operation in the US, and while a professional and functional website is essential, I would be remiss if I didn't challenge myself to dig up those mad HTML and CSS skills from the 1990's to see about managing costs.
Ohhh, dear. Managing expectations is also a thing.
I like to think I have fairly solid technological skills, but in doing this myself, I definitely felt, well, old? At the very least, I can better understand the whole "new-fangled internet boxes" being disruptive and confusing for users who didn't keep up with the trends the last 20+ years. SEO? Responsive design? Keyword research? Analytics? Backlinks? Of course I want to be found on Google, and I know what social media is, but what do all these charts mean? Oh, recycling/updating old content actually helps with these, uh, algorithms?
And so, my journey carries on with this website as my baby. I'm extremely grateful to have the internet and the infinite resources that come along with it, because goodness, it can be a task. I absolutely understand the value of specialists who can code, do SEO for a living, so on. After all my legwork, I really get why people are paid for this, but for now, I really enjoy the challenge of learning and trying to understand for myself. I hope in the near future this web presence is something I can share and collaborate with a professional agency on, but for now, it's been a fun learning experience to keep me on task and up to date.
Sometimes my ambitious nature gets the better of me, but I wouldn't trade it for anything. Until my next big idea!