Image Credits: Stephanie Taylor
I definitely learned a lot from the responsive resume/personal statement website project. Going into this project I had very limited knowledge of the workings of html and css. CSS scared me. I knew a little bit of what html was, but never really knew anything about css or how they were connected. Html seemed easier for me to understand. I think it’s still that way to me, but CSS doesn’t scare me half as bad anymore.
I changed the colors of my website half a dozen times during this project. I was trying to use the psychology of colors. My first choice was a bright shade of purple because purple is often thought of as being a color that represents success and being that this is a portfolio website/resume assignment, I wanted to give people the impression that I was successful. However, my original shade was blindingly bright and very difficult to read. I continued to study up on color psychology as well as observe other successful websites as well as my classmates and realized that blue would be the better option. Blue represents calm, peacefulness. It is also easy to build upon — many shades of blue are easy to read.
Earlier on in this project I think I focused way too much on the colors/design and not enough on the code itself. I did this because colors offered a sense of comfort to me — they seemed easy to pick out and play around with. Coding was challenging and made me nervous. I didn’t want to break anything and I didn’t understand how many parts of coding worked.
The more I coded the easier it became. When I read about coding in the textbooks it confused me. The textbooks were simple and easy to read, but coding just didn’t click with me until I did it for myself. I think coding is one of those things in life that I have to use my own trial-and-error experience to learn. I also learned a lot by taking apart my classmate’s websites. I constantly checked their pages to see how they were approaching the assignment. When I saw something that I liked I would view their html/css codes and try to apply it to my own website. When I did this I often found that their visions didn’t match what I wanted to do with my website, or that, while it looked good on their sites it didn’t cross over too well to mine. However, even when the codes didn’t look so great on my website, playing around with them definitely helped me learn how to code and what codes created what functions.
I feel much more confident about coding now than I did before. I am quite pleased with how my website looks at this given moment. However, there are definitely some things that I would still change if I had more time. For one, I don’t have my writing samples listed at the moment. This is a requirement for the second project, but still many people included it this time around. I saw some classmates add it directly to their resumes which I found interesting. I kind of envision having a whole separate html file/page just for them. I have a lot of writing samples and if I give them their own page I think it will help to keep it neater.
If I had more time I might also have made my personal statement it’s own page instead of just placing it on the home page. I’m not sure about that though. I do kind of like it on the front page as I feel it helps to set the tone of the website as a whole. This is a decision I’ve been pretty torn over. I think I should look at some more examples to figure out where to go with that. If I had more time I think I would have also done a bit more with margins/padding/borders or perhaps division boxes to make my page stand out a bit more. Padding and margins originally scared me and gave me much anxiety, but once I began learning where/how they are used on a page I started to understand them more and my anxiety went down. I struggled a little with the boxes and figuring out how to use them in a way that made elements pop out without the website feeling too crowded. I still feel like there are more creative ways to use the division boxes that I just didn’t have the time to discover yet, though.
Overall this has been quite the learning experience and an incredible intro into the world of web design. I can’t wait to learn more and see how my website evolves as the semester goes on.