I have been involved in web design and development since 1998. Before that, my field was architecture. Had the World Wide Web not sprung into existence in the early 90s, I might still be up to my elbows in construction sites, building contractors, AutoCAD, and planning applications.
The two fields are not all that different. Both involve creativity, ingenuity, solving complex problems, and reconciling the needs of different groups. What drew me to architecture originally was the way it demanded both left- and right-brained thinking. Web design is no different.
What excites me about web design is that it’s still a young field, and the rules are still being written. 20 years on, it’s an evolving discipline. Trends come and go, but I believe the timeless design attributes of simplicity, harmony, and fitness for purpose always win out (I just stopped myself from saying
form follows function). Additionally, the technological overload predicted by the likes of Alvin Toffler more than a generation ago have come to pass, and I’m particularly passionate about advocating for the hapless user. Content is still king, but frictionless and delightful user experiences deserve equal billing. The best design is humble, and defers equally to the content and the user: on the web, design is the frame, not the painting.