Immersed into my studies


I’ve been so immersed into my studies, I haven’t had time to write this blog. I don’t remember exactly what we have learned. This post is more of an update than how it has went so far.
We had Joomla and then some more WordPress. I also got myself an own domain for my portfolio. Even if it’s CMS, it’s still difficult. It’s the finding stuff, themes, codes etc. that is a pain in the neck. It’s nothing like the blog version of WordPress where you don’t have the chance to change the codes. In the website version, the one you can download on or your web hosting service. You have to search the widgets, themes and plugins by yourself. You can also download some plugins through WP. In Joomla, it’s even harder so I prefer WP to that. Also because I’m used to it.

On the job learning begins next week. I had 4 clients but now it seems, there’s only one. What I hate the most is waiting. I’m still waiting for a reply for 2 others but I’ve lost hope. I really hope people would email back instead of keeping me waiting for ages. This is not good. Failing on the last-minute. I really need clients to make sites for. I won’t graduate otherwise. Client work is the main thing. One client was sure but I still haven’t got the contract signed. I’m really worried now. I’ve come this far and I don’t want to give in. The job learning is for 6 weeks and if I don’t have a job during that time, it’s been useless. I have nothing to show to the assessors who’s gonna grade our work. Am I cursed somehow? I had a hand full of clients and now soon none. It’s so close now and then clients fail me. At least it’s not my job where I get paid. I would become very poor if I had an own business. Maybe people don’t want to rely on a student. But how can a student gets experience, if no one wants to give you practise. Everybody doesn’t have friends and family to make sites for. I’ve searched the internet for ideas how to get clients but they won’t help me. Maybe I’m driving people away. It makes me feel like a person who thought they were creative but no one else sees it that way. I won’t become a real web designer and I have yet again think what I want to do for a living. It was such a good idea at first. But losing clients, have made me think if I can do it after all.

Every wannabe designer have trouble getting a crack at it at first. That’s what I want to think at least. When you lose a client for no special reason, you get up again. But when you study web design and you need to find clients, you get almost desperate and worried you won’t find new one’s. Other thing is, can I really do it? It feels like I forgot everything I learned. In the first on the job learning, it was really difficult and it didn’t become a site. I can’t use that in the last exam. It’s not impressive at all for a client work. When something is being the target of assessment, it should be decently done. You need to prove your professionalism because it is after all a further vocational qualification. Not getting a client, is a lame excuse and I don’t want to be seen as a loser.
So this post won’t become a negative one, I’ll end this with a happier note. Things is never too bad, you can’t handle them. I got through the first client work with decency and no matter what happens, I shouldn’t give up hope.

Being photoshopping

photoshopped buckets
Made with Photoshop CS6

In photo editing you’re never finished. You always learn something new and different methods. For me photoshop is the more familiar photo editing program. There are others like Gimp which is free but when you’re used to using Photoshop, you’ll never go back. If I want something done very quickly I use PicMonkey but other times, I use that one.

Last week we had photo editing all week and it ended today. We had Lightroom and then Photoshop. In school we have CS6 but it’s not much different from the newer versions. They all similar, it only depends what you need and how to use it. We learned for example how to put text in a photo, reflections to a text, patterns on a photo, clipping masks etc. We also practised doing banners. One thing is to know what kind of tools there is and the other how to master them. That’s why practise is very important. Even if photo editing is familiar to me, a repeat is always in order. Today we had a little about 3D in Photoshop even though it’s not in the education plan. There are other programs where you can do them that are much better. But if you only want to make something simple, the Photoshop one is enough. Making things in 3D is a totally different world.

We haven’t only done photo editing but also learning Finnish grammar. Even if we live here, there’s always difficulties. I’m not surprised at all that foreigners have problems with learning the language. Talking and writing is two different things. You have to know where to put commas and so on. I’ve had troubles with that since Finnish-Swedish is my mother tongue. Last but not least. We have an assignment where we work in pairs. One is the client and the other is the web designer. Then visa versa. It’s a made up bakery and confectionery business and the site will be made with WordPress, so it’s a real site. We interviewed each other and then we would write a history about the make up story based on the interview. Then we should make a banner and a logo. That’s next on the agenda. It’s good practise for the future. Making web sites is not something you do in a day. There’s a lot of planning and hair pulling before it’s finished. You don’t make a web site to yourself nor the client. You make it for the customers. They’re the one’s using the site. That’s a story for another day.

Class magazine in the making

classmagNew year, new tricks. With InDesign you can do a lot of different things. We started with making a brochure. We could decide what kind of folding model we wanted and what kind of company it could be for. It could also be imaginative event or whatever you liked. It didn’t have to have real text. The point was that we would practise with the different tools and what kind of possibilities you have with the program. It’s the planning that takes time even if it was just practise. That’s why we’re here, to learn.

Last week we made a class magazine on InDesign. We all did our own version. We wrote our own material too. I’ve done a layout before but that was only 4 pages. Now I had to make a whole magazine and that’s a totally different situation. It’s much more fun than coding. Web design is not only about making websites. You need other skills too. It suits me very well since I like variety and I can do a lot of other creative things. I’m almost finished with my version of the mag but there’s always something that prevent me to make it. The only thing that is left is the table of content. We went through it during class but now when I try to make it, I don’t know how. I tried to find a solution online but I can’t find any good ones. It’s really frustrated to study by yourself when you can’t ask the teacher. I hope this problem won’t happen when it’s time to have on the job learning again. You can’t find everything on the internet.

There will always be problems but you live and learn. You have to find a solution and when you do, you can do it better next time. I might not become the greatest in the world when it comes to making magazine layouts but having that skill does help. I just hope I won’t take some graphic designers job 🙂 If this web design won’t bear fruit, maybe one of my other skills will. It’s been a relief to do something else besides coding. I hope I haven’t forgotten that. It doesn’t feel like being a web design student since we’ve done nothing but that.
Today and tomorrow we’re having language planning and writing for the web which is very important too. Finnish really isn’t an easy language. It causes problems even for me sometimes. Rest of the week, we’re having photo editing. Months fly by quickly. I wish I could edit myself so I would learn faster but I guess that’s a loss cause.

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