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I'm passionate about UI & UX where do I start?

2 years ago from , Getting started with UI and UX

I am not sure where to start to learn design and user experience, where do you suggest I start my journey and how do I continue to grow after that?

How did you get started? What resources did you use? What's your creative process like?

I have no experience and am just getting started.

Thanks in advance!

25 comments

  • Scott ThomasScott Thomas, 2 years ago

    The goal is to find what you like and what drives you. There are many different elements and positions in both fields.

    For Design

    Practice. Practice. Practice.

    • Start recreating designs right off of dribbble. This will help you learn modern design techniques and styles as well as your design software.
    • Play around in recreating your favorite websites. This will help you explode more creativity. I did a lot of spec work for my one job in the past. Annoying, but help me explore new ideas.
    • Start picking up freelance jobs and flip projects quickly. This will help your skills working with people and around parameters. You will get abused and leave you crying in the corner. Lots of life sessions with this one, but joyful as well.

    For UX

    Learn, Apply, Fail, and repeat

    • Read blog articles, books, (lean ux, ux research, just enough research, User story mapping, sprints)
    • Apply what you learned in one of your freelance jobs. Fail and adapt to why it didn't work as well for the next time you do it.
    9 points
    • Ken B, 2 years ago

      Thanks, I'll do some digging to find out what drives me and then start aiming towards practicing everyday. The suggestions you made about improving through practice are awesome, practical and I didn't even think of doing those things to improve my skills, much appreciated!

      0 points
  • Jordan BJordan B, 2 years ago

    Read—not just books on design, but also psychology, interpersonal skills, etc...It all comes together to help you have a more fulfilled career/life in the long run. Start here.

    Mimic—there is a tremendous amount that you can learn from rebuilding work that you like. Ask yourself, "Why did they choose this font/color/padding, etc.?". Start here.

    Ask questions constantly—you've taken a step by spending time on DN and asking for help. Continue to do that. There is a wealth of knowledge and people willing to share and help.

    Fail—try not to be afraid of failure. Share your work. It will hurt, but you learn faster than playing it safe or keeping your design work to yourself.

    Hope that helps. Good luck!

    7 points
    • , 2 years ago

      Thanks for the links and advice Jordan! I'm starting to see a trend here that design and user experience are (from what I can see) actions taken to further a desired outcome which ultimately starts from really understanding the problem to solve along with understanding those people that will use the final product. I'll continue asking questions, building my skills and questioning along the way. :)

      2 points
  • Marcel M., 2 years ago

    If you're just getting started it's hard to claim that you're "passionate" about UI/UX.

    Let's say you admire good looking things or things that work and you would like to dig deeper into the mysterious world of design, especially UI/UX :)

    There's plenty of inspirational websites but at a certain point you need to get your hands dirty to improve/hone your skills. Try to find someone in your area that can answer all the beginners questions over a cup of coffee. So much nicer than skimming through outdated blog posts.

    6 points
    • , 2 years ago

      Good point, I do admire good looking things that work well. I find myself day dreaming of ideas of my own, wishing I had the skills to bring something similar to life. Thanks for the suggestion, I'll reach out to some individuals and try some meetups!

      1 point
  • Pantelis Petmezas, 2 years ago

    I recommend you go through the lessons of the ----> https://hackdesign.org/

    A great place for a beginner

    3 points
  • Maria Hristoforova, 2 years ago

    I use this all the time - http://designnotes.co/ I think someone posted in on DN a few weeks back and it's super handy!

    2 points
  • Eduardo Ramos, 2 years ago

    I believe the best starting point is studying the basic principles of Interaction design, Visual Design, and ultimately, UX.

    I think you’ll benefit greatly from learning about the psychological and sociological reasons that make design appealing to people, why a design is successful, and which combination of elements make for a pleasant user experience. After all, the rational, logical and subconscious reasons that made something work for the masses in 1980 are the same reasons that will make it work in 2020.

    I personally come from a QA background and have learned many things through testing software. However, I struggled to put a lot of that knowledge into words, or make a practical use of it for that matter. I could see that something was wrong or wasn’t working for me as a user when I was checking an interface but I couldn’t make sense of it.

    Then I started checking online material on the topic of interaction design and things started to make sense.

    My sources to learn are:

    And, online courses from beginner to advanced, with suggested learning paths:

    2 points
    • Ken B, 2 years ago

      Thanks for the time and for the response, I'll take your advice and start with studying the principles.

      I never thought about studying the psychological and sociological reasons for design and I'll add that to my list to bake into my journey.

      I greatly appreciate the resources I'll be sure to check them out!

      1 point
  • Dirk HCM van BoxtelDirk HCM van Boxtel, 2 years ago
    • Start side-projects & learn from them
    • Find and contribute to (online) communities
    • Absorb as much as you can (books, articles, video, podcasts, etc)
    1 point
    • Ken B, almost 2 years ago

      Will do! I'm thinking of using Abstract for version control going forward for those projects. Any suggestions on tools to use?

      0 points
      • Dirk HCM van BoxtelDirk HCM van Boxtel, almost 2 years ago

        Try all of them. Find articles detailing the differences, decide which tools are best for which use-case.

        Get adapt at switching tool-sets, to learn each one's strengths and weaknesses.

        Don't become a fanboy. It's fine to master a single tool, but never become "that person" that will argue it over anything at any point in time.

        (Or if you want it in an analogy: sometimes you nail two boards together, sometimes you screw them. It all depends on the context.)

        1 point
  • Andy MaiAndy Mai, 2 years ago

    Aside from what others have mentioned, I would start by doing simple exercises in order to measure your progress over time. When I was teaching UX, I would have students take a sheet of paper and draw lines to divide it into 4 equal sections. I would give them a design brief like, "Design a TV remote control, it can be an app or a custom piece of hardware". Then in each of the sections on the piece of paper, they would have to sketch a different design. It's a good way to flex your imagination and to start building a foundation for being able to talk about your design thinking. For example, "I created this variation for this context, however in this other context, I think this other design works better because...".

    1 point
    • , 2 years ago

      That's a great idea, and I'm a fan of 80 doing / 20 learning. Measuring that progress over time in my mind can only be done by reviewing work I've done and completed vs only what I know, so that's great advice thank you!

      0 points
  • Sahil VhoraSahil Vhora, 2 years ago

    Start watching videos of this guy: https://www.youtube.com/user/mlwebco

    1 point
  • D G, 2 years ago

    I would suggest starting with hackdesign.org. Their structured course via email has helped thousands of folks out there (including me).

    And then you can start referring to this list of blogs, newsletters, designers, etc I put together for folks to learn product design online and completely free.

    0 points
  • Atul Pradhananga, 2 years ago

    I'm on the same boat and this learning path from springboard is the most valuable resource I've found till date. Start with this and you'll be good to go https://www.springboard.com/learning-paths/user-experience-design/learn/

    0 points
    • , 2 years ago

      Another great resource thank you! I'll be sure to check it out.

      0 points
  • Allan Yu, 2 years ago

    Hey Ken, I've actually been working on a blog post aimed at helping folks trying to break into UX. Care to give me some feedback on what connects and what doesn't? DM me @allanyu3

    0 points