How can you use print design skills to transition to web design? Understand the medium
This question was asked on LinkedIn and I was invited to contribute, however 750 characters weren't enough to fully answer. It was broken down into parts and this was part one.
1. Understand the medium
Having started my design journey before computers were used, I can honestly say that the design process has more creative freedom when it starts in your mind whether the end result will be on paper or on screen. Therefore, the process starts off the same for all mediums.
However, that creativity has to have purpose and function. The considerations could be based on who needs what and in which timeframe. Once you have decided what information is the most important to make the easiest to access, then you can focus on creating a consistent visual representation of that information across any platform or medium.
Your creative design is adapted for your ideal viewer/user to represent the information they want visually and need to motivate them to take positive action.
If you already have your message designed for one medium, that can form the basis for the visual style of the other. Fonts, colours and shapes can be honoured with flexibility that doesn't hinder the message.
It makes logical sense to start with the smallest medium first to ensure your design incorporates the most important information. From then on, you can add and expand to include more for each device/medium.
Rather than concentrate on different boundaries, it's advisable to work to a 100% fluid format which will cope with any of the ever-changing medium sizes in today's world.