Designer or developer?

11 08 2008

Hi,

I’ve been thinking more and more since starting my new job as a web developer about exactly how to clarify myself. While my job title is web developer, I don’t think that’s what I am.

I much prefer design work. Not only do I understand it far more I enjoy it more also. However, I can see that I need to learn developer skills and my current skill set lends itself better to that.

With so much to learn I think that for now I will learn my trade as a developer and hope that my design skills don’t fade. When I feel I have gained enough professional developer knowledge I will hope to take these skills and merge them with my design ideas to start my own studio.

Is it possible to do both?…

I’d be really interested to find out about your skill sets and if you think it is possible to excel at both? What aspect do you enjoy the most and why?

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3 responses

12 08 2008
liz

You might enjoy the comments in response to this article on 37 signals which ponders much the same thing you are asking about.

From a personal standpoint, I define myself as a designer who happens to know some web development. I’m not sure if one could as successfully claim the opposite. There’s a LOT of positions out there that hire for a designer and happen to, either explicitly or just through happenstance, have some development involved.

Generally, developers are not thought of as creative in an artistic way, so if you land a job as a developer, that’s pretty much what you’re going to be doing.

So I guess my short answer to your question is: It’s definitely possible to do both. But you’ll have better success doing both by billing yourself as a designer and finding work as a freelancer or in shops that haven’t drawn lines in the sand between designers/developers. There’s lots of them out there.

BTW, nice site, and good luck!

13 08 2008
kim

You can do both. I did my undergrad in art and my masters in IT. I am currently a Flex developer at Cynergy Systems, Inc. I was in the same position as you, designer or developer? In the end, the phrase “If you don’t use it, you lose it.” For me designing is easy and the skills never really go away and design rules generally stay the same. Developing means to be always on your toes and brushing up on your coding skills. Technology changes at a constant rate. Also, I like being artistic in my own time. I’m fortunate that I am at a company where they will let you cross from one side to the other (pending on your skills that is). Both have pros and cons and in the end it’s up to you. I love the intersection of art and technology and for me I need both sides. g’luck!

5 07 2010
hermes handbags

You can do both. I did my undergrad in art and my masters in IT. I am currently a Flex developer at Cynergy Systems, Inc. I was in the same position as you, designer or developer? In the end, the phrase “If you don’t use it, you lose it.” For me designing is easy and the skills never really go away and design rules generally stay the same. Developing means to be always on your toes and brushing up on your coding skills. Technology changes at a constant rate. Also, I like being artistic in my own time. I’m fortunate that I am at a company where they will let you cross from one side to the other (pending on your skills that is). Both have pros and cons and in the end it’s up to you. I love the intersection of art and technology and for me I need both sides. g’luck!

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