The Unconventional Beginnings of a “So-Called” Designer

“Hasbro playset UI aside”

Ryan Roberts
Nov 10, 2013 · 2 min read

When I was ten years old, I introduced myself to Myspace.com. Oh, the wariness of “How old are you?” drop-downs… The profile page in my mind was of my own creation. (This was back when having friends was a thing). After not getting the fun, famousness, and richness I thought once deserved, my time was over with Myspace. I signed up with Webs. At this point, I knew I was a full-blown web developer with all my font sizes and templates I could ever want to choose, if it were within 20 different typefaces. I created websites for my eCommerce store jam packed with random unrelated stuff, one for my “technology empire” and other websites that got about 6 or less views a month. I never made a sale, so that meant my largest competitor Buy.com won.

After many years, YEARS! of defeat, I then thought, “It must be Webs fault”. I scoured the internet and found Weebly, since you may be expecting a build up of some-sort, I had the same results as Webs. So, more looking and I ended up with Wix.

Hasbro playset UI aside, it gave me much more freedom from templates. This was the biggest turning point, in my self-proclaimed “career” of a big time web developer. It didn't take long to get good at Wix editor, honestly good. I soon started blogging about Web Design and participating on the Wix forums. I even got a still waiting for payment client and a not sure where I stand job offer soon after.

One could say that I abused the Wix editor. I sure do. The tool was used so far from what they were originally intended for. By the time I quit using Wix, I knew the tool even better than the support team.

One day from the not sure where I stand job offer, a task was needed beyond the specs of my trusty Wix editor. So now, scouring the internet again, I ended up downloaded GIMP. Couldn’t say I loved the interface, so a short time after the project was complete, Pixelmator was bought. That was the next turning point in my self-proclaimed career. My mind has completely imploded at this point, for some reason when using Wix, never thought that there could be software for what I have been manipulating Wix to do all this time; designing software interfaces.

For this period of time, I found many tools for UI design like Sketch and even ones not for UI, I found interesting like Blender and Photoshop.

Pixelmator got annoying though, but to it’s respect, it is not made for UI design, it’s purpose is to manipulate photos and it’s very good at it. So short story later, Sketch is my main tool for working on projects. Plus, using photo editing software to design interfaces is a bit daft. Right?



    Ryan Roberts

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    Full-Time Hobbyist