In the digital age, it’s important to have an online presence. I coded the first iteration of my website on my own, which helped me grow as a developer. I enjoyed creating my brand and iterating on it the more I learned about design.
Audience: Anyone who wants to know who I am and what I do!
Adobe Illustrator + Brackets + Google Fonts + Github Pages + Jekyll + Namecheap + Google Analytics + Sketch + Invision
Understand & Explore
Online portfolios usually include a standard set of information: biography, project showcase, and resume. I researched many online design portfolios for inspiration. Through other people’s websites, I could see the latest web design trends, which I used as guidelines. Most had a combination of single-scroll vs multiple page layouts, and clean, flat UI.
Define & Ideate
After I collected ideas and decided on content, I went to work sketching ideas on paper. I rapidly came up with multiple design options to choose from. Here I worked on finding a color palette, which I wanted to be nature-themed. Lots of green and blue.
Time to turn paper wireframes into mockups in Adobe Illustrator. I found that some designs didn’t translate well to the screen, so I chose the most practical version and iterate on it.
I vowed to use this project as an opportunity to practice coding, so I used pure HTML/CSS/JS for the first version. I discovered that I was using lots of repetitive code in the headers and footers. The images loaded slowly, and the design left something to be desired.
I also sent the link to friends for design feedback.
Understand & Explore
During the next research phase, I discovered Jekyll, the static site generator that played nicely with Github Pages. It would reduce the repetition in my code.
Define & Ideate & Prototype
With the feedback from friends and family, I came up with a new design.
Jekyll made coding much easier. I also worked on making the site mobile responsive and signed up for Google Analytics so I could spy on visitors.
I corrected most PageSpeed issues by optimizing images and deferring some JS loading. Mobile responsiveness wasn’t perfect, but nothing was broken.
ITERATION 3 - present
I continued to ask for feedback from people around me, especially fellow product designers. I continued to learn more about coding and information design. And I finally got Sketch to design future iterations.
An online portfolio reflects your identity, which can evolve quickly when you’re learning. I’ve had to constantly revisit my portfolio since it’s gone up. As a writer, I still found crafting the right copy for these project pages to be the hardest part. As a developer, I’ve learned so much about the ins and outs of building a webpage.