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Old May 11 2009, 05:17 AM   #1
K-Star
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Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

That seems to be all I'm good at as far as things I've learned here in college...

Here's an example, minus a proper header and footer since I haven't gotten around to making those yet:

http://babbage.cs.missouri.edu/~ljrckd/cs2830/Project/

Eventually that site's going to be turned into my final project for Intro to the Internet.
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Old May 11 2009, 09:53 PM   #2
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

Make a living off of it? A little tough, as the skills are like any other 'artist-based' skill set, really depends on the amount of demand and how competitive you really are. There -are- CSS sites out there that seem to be doing okay, and so long as you're modest in your expectations, you can probably earn a wage on it.

Just don't expect to be buying a Ferrari any time soon.
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Old May 12 2009, 06:14 AM   #3
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

I think it's pretty hard to make a good living doing websites as there is so much talent for hire. I once thought about this career path too but there are so many people so much better than me. Here's some idea of your competition... http://www.simplebits.com/
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Old May 12 2009, 07:24 AM   #4
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

Well there are a lot of web sites, and most look like crap and need a redesign. If you're a good designer, you can make a living out of it. If you're a good designer, a good CSS/HTML/javascript coder, and a good sales person, you'll have a better chance, though.

The CSS and HTML don't validate on that page, and I think it could look a lot better. Hopefully you still have some time at college. Since this is "Intro to the Internet", I'm assuming you'll learn more later.
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Old May 12 2009, 08:09 AM   #5
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

plague wrote: View Post
Well there are a lot of web sites, and most look like crap and need a redesign. If you're a good designer, you can make a living out of it. If you're a good designer, a good CSS/HTML/javascript coder, and a good sales person, you'll have a better chance, though.

The CSS and HTML don't validate on that page, and I think it could look a lot better. Hopefully you still have some time at college. Since this is "Intro to the Internet", I'm assuming you'll learn more later.
They don't validate? What do you mean? (Also, the header and footer haven't been added yet... It'll look loads better once they're added.)
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Old May 12 2009, 03:33 PM   #6
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

The best way to make a living is to get hired by a company to build and maintain their site for them.
Going freelance and hoping you can get business is hard. And everyone wants something for pretty much nothing these days.
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Old May 12 2009, 03:38 PM   #7
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

K-Star wrote: View Post
They don't validate? What do you mean? (Also, the header and footer haven't been added yet... It'll look loads better once they're added.)
http://validator.w3.org/
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Old May 12 2009, 04:41 PM   #8
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

And this:

http://jigsaw.w3.org/css-validator/
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Old May 12 2009, 05:39 PM   #9
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

Making a living doing freelance web design is very tough. A company of any decent size will have their own staff for such a task, or will hire an outside company. Freelancers are pretty much left with the scraps: what you might find on a site like Elance or RentACoder, or doing sites for local businesses who just want simple brochureware and nothing fancy.
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Old May 12 2009, 05:50 PM   #10
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

Mr. B wrote: View Post
K-Star wrote: View Post
They don't validate? What do you mean? (Also, the header and footer haven't been added yet... It'll look loads better once they're added.)
http://validator.w3.org/
HA! One error, easily fixed. Much better than the number of errors I get on my first site (which was written before I learned proper XHTML.)

plague wrote: View Post
Two errors there. The background color one can be fixed by having me switch it to a hex code. I dunno how to fix the smallcaps one though.

Seriously, that's way better than what I USED to do.

http://bengal.missouri.edu/~ljrckd/awesomeness if you want to run that through a validator
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Old May 13 2009, 04:54 AM   #11
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

The "smallcaps" should be "small-caps".

Although a lot of designers can get away with code that doesn't validate because they're selling to customers that don't know any better, those web sites are great tools to check your code for errors.

Much improved from the old one, like you said. The old site looks almost like a wordpress layout.

As others have said, it's hard doing freelance work, but it's the right choice for many and can help you get that corporate job after you've increased the size of your portfolio and improved your skills. I think you'll want some graphic design classes too, if you're serious about doing the design too, and not just the coding.

I think it's great that you're already networking your job skills. I'm sure you'll do fine.
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Old May 14 2009, 12:04 AM   #12
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

K-Star wrote: View Post
That seems to be all I'm good at as far as things I've learned here in college...

Here's an example, minus a proper header and footer since I haven't gotten around to making those yet:

http://babbage.cs.missouri.edu/~ljrckd/cs2830/Project/

Eventually that site's going to be turned into my final project for Intro to the Internet.
If you are good at what you do the world needs you more than you know. Case in point: http://www.woothemes.com
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Old May 14 2009, 02:43 AM   #13
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

there seems to be a market for good layout artists that can do templates for Wordpress and Joomla, but i don't think as a regular web developer there's a market in CSS. it's too easy for the normal joe to just setup wordpress or joomla and apply a template. JMHO. i do web development for a fortune 500 company and i can see the writing on the wall. i don't expect to have my job for more than a few years though there has been no talks of layoffs... yet.
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Old May 15 2009, 05:12 PM   #14
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

Alright y'all... I've implemented all sorts of PHP and fun stuff in here, and finally finished up the CSS. You can even sign in! (But only under two different usernames/passwords, and I'm not giving y'all the admin one. I haven't figured out how to implement a registration feature.)

http://babbage.cs.missouri.edu/~ljrckd/cs2830/final

Please feel free to add funny captions for the screencap if you log in. Just keep it somewhat tasteful since my professor will be seeing them (I say this... after a bunch of my reviews contain adult language...)
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Old May 16 2009, 02:04 AM   #15
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Re: Is it possible to make a living off designing CSS layouts?

Robert Maxwell wrote: View Post
Making a living doing freelance web design is very tough. A company of any decent size will have their own staff for such a task, or will hire an outside company. Freelancers are pretty much left with the scraps: what you might find on a site like Elance or RentACoder, or doing sites for local businesses who just want simple brochureware and nothing fancy.
I do, did, however you want to put it, the freelance thing. It's hard in the best of times, in a recession-- with frivolous spending cut back and companies looking to cut corner or in house what they can-- it's a fucking nightmare. I'm down to one client at the moment-- local company. Ever job I bid on, where I was one of maybe 8 or 9 in the local area a year or so ago, I can easily say there's 2 or 3 dozen for even the shit jobs. This time a year ago, I banked easily a few hundred just on piss away projects-- shit I could knock out in a hour or two-- this year, every one of my former regulars is either in bankruptcy, cutting back, or in housing (ie getting their spouse, kid, or niece/nephew, etc to do it for nothing).

I like the flexibility of freelancing and I know I couldn't handle the 9 to 5 gig doing for a company, but if things don't pick up by this winter I'm going to have to get a "day job" (graveyard shift somewhere) to start picking up the slack in the household budget.

I feel sorry for my cousins: 1 a single mother with $$$ in her eye thinking she's going to get rich by retraining from a receptionist to web design-- and the most she can grasp is using a WYSIWYG editor and using premade template kits, she can't long-hand a single line of script; another who's coming out of a tech school with a degree in web design and talking about he'll be a millionaire by the end of this year just building personal homepages for people.
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