A good web designer for the professional development of layouts must have skills in working with different software tools. And this applies not only to graphic editors. In this article we will list the main categories of programs with their main purpose is to create a website design.
The most common programs can be called:
- Adobe PhotoShop – this is the absolute leader among graphic programs of this kind. However, it requires a fairly large amount of computer resources.
- Paint.net is a good alternative to Photoshop. Convenient interface, where everything is at your fingertips and the ability to expand it with third-party plugins. Works under Windows.
- GIMP – which stands for “GNU image manipulation program”. It is a long known cross-platform replacement for Photoshop also with powerful functionality. There is a version of GIMPShop closer to the interface of Photoshop.
Vector Graphics Processing Program
Possession of this type of program will also be a significant plus for the web designer. They allow you to create buttons, images, inscriptions, and other elements with the clipart or from nothing. At the same time work with vector graphics is fundamentally different from work with bitmap, so master them separately. For training, you can create business cards, letterheads, or brochures in vector, or just use free envelope mockup — there will be a useful plus from studying the editor. The following skills are needed here:
- Working with graphic objects: overlaying them, grouping them, creating unusual shapes;
- Skills in working with curves and curve nodes;
- Mastery of guides and working with the grid;
- Understanding of color models -RGB, HSB, CMYK
- Ability to place text on any curve;
- Mastery of effects;
- Gradients and fills, including fractal.
The main representatives of this class of programs are Corel DRAW and Adobe Illustrator. They are approximately equal in capacity and use the latest advances in vector graphics. However, both of these programs are quite tezhelyevyh weight. A lighter option is Corel Xara, but the lightness has to pay for the lack of ability to perform some effects and commands.
Web page viewers
These are our usual browsers. There are a lot of them nowadays and there are many to choose from. The most popular Windows operating system comes standard with Internet Explorer, but it is considered to be far from perfect and most internet users prefer to install other products. It’s hard to say which one is better – all modern browsers contain many useful tools and features, but the most popular are Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. For the designer, they will need not only to surf the Internet to find pictures for the site. They have a special tool for inspecting the elements of web pages – Firebug, which allows a lot of useful information about the structure of the site.
Some special programs
Some effects or actions can not or very difficult to perform in these programs, so you will need some additional programs, for example:
- Colormania is a useful and lightweight tool that lets you determine the RGB color of any point on your monitor screen in one click. You can also use an extension for your browser, such as Eye Dropper for Chrome.
- Adobe Flash – a well-known tool for creating banners and other animations for websites, such as interactive buttons, cartoon characters, and many other things.
- Ruler – allows you to measure the size of any elements you want. There are many software solutions, such as SPRuler, Code-V Ruler. You can also use a similar browser extension such as MeasureIt (Google Chrome).
- GIF Animator is a simple program for creating animated gif pictures. Although this work can be done in Photoshop as well.
As you gain experience, you will have your own favorite and familiar tools to work with. This is only a recommended list for use. You should not install them all at once. To start working it is enough to have one of the visual editors and a browser, but engage in a dense study of the possibilities and mastering the practical work.