There are a lot of people who are not the origin of art design, but they have been transferred to designers because of their interests or other reasons (like me, computer science graduate, from programmer to designer). At the beginning of the transition, more or less will encounter some difficulties, confusion and ignorance of direction (sometimes even worry about being despised by some so-called class members). The author is writing this article for people who do not know how to design, how to learn and how to become excellent designers.

Let’s take a look at how foreign designers step by step to become excellent designers.

1. observation

Put down the hand-painted plate, do not rush to operate on the computer. The first step is to use your eyes to see the world of design.

Design is everywhere.

Why do you hate that billboard? Why can that bottle of wine stand out on the shelf? Is that road sign in the right place?

The world is full of design. The first step is to be aware of it.

Delta by Maryanne for Atlassian

2. learn a tool software

Any software is all right. You just have to choose one. Those who are fond of arguing will always say that the tools they use are the best, but this is not important. It’s like a chef, the same ingredients that he can always make the most delicious. If you have enough design power, you can design anything you want to design.

Open this website, print it out and hang it on the wall, then throw darts. You choose a tool that you belong to, and the tool that the author wants to emphasize is not important. Choose the right tools to facilitate collaboration.

Delta by Rachel He

3. reading

There is a lot of resources on the Internet. Tutorials, courses, design articles, and even chatting with designers at Twitter.

Immerse yourself in the design culture. You may only be able to understand 10% of what designers say, but you can understand some design terms. You will understand what is really important and what is not important.

4. copy

I bet that about 72% of today’s designers started by learning how to design flame characters in Photoshop.

Through a study course or a direct copy of the design, you can reduce the pressure of the brain, instead of making an original design at the present stage, color, composition, layer style, and so on. The purpose of copying is to learn software.

It’s a bit like learning to cook, but someone has cut the ingredients for you, set the condiments, and even the pot is hot for you. All you have to do is throw in the ingredients and do not burn them.

Boom… You are the chef!

Delta by Emrich Office

5. master software

Well, you are not a real cook, you are a designer, and you are already getting used to the design tools you have chosen.

Learn shortcut keys, Download plug-ins, and find some supporting resources.

The best designers in the world can use the keyboard to design a good UI interface.

Design tools should never be an obstacle to your design.

6. to copy again

Unlike previous copying, you need to do some original creation this time. Find something you like on dribbble and try to redesign it, mimicking the style of the original to do some original design.

For example, when you design a gymnasium, you imitate the men and women in the movement and design other characters according to your style.

 by Strava

7. pay attention to visual effect

Really, what you need to worry about now is to do something that looks good. Maybe not everyone likes, at least you should be satisfied.

Don’t worry, the design you are proud of today will be bad after looking back in a week. Your aesthetic will be getting better and better. As my design mentor, Chris Beck, once told me, you didn’t finish the design until your first version looked like a pile of garbage.

by Bianca Toloi

8. perfect things

Pay attention to some small details in design, and leave a heart in every time you feel that your work is perfect.

Pay attention to color matching and align everything to the grid to ensure that the object is absolutely centered.

Develop your eyes until you have a pixel eye.

by Studio – JQ

9. redo early design

Redesign the design that you first copied from the wave.

This time you will be faster and more accurate, and the final work will surely be better than the first time you try it.

Delta by Alex Suprun

10. soliciting opinions

You may not have shown your work to anyone, so now is the time. At the very beginning, it’s hard to listen to feedback. Those criticisms will make you feel like you are insulting your child.

As time goes on, you will find that those criticisms will make your work better and better.

Take a deep breath and face it. Criticism will make you feel uncomfortable, but remember, your design is more than that.

by Ashley Siebels

11. find the basis for your design

When you receive the design feedback for the first time, try to explain your design ideas. You will soon find that you may not always know why you design that kind of thing.

I will never forget that my design manager first asked me why I used the check box instead of the drop-down box. My solution is right, but I don’t know why. The more you design, the more knowledge your design logic will become.

Any design has its reason. I had been entangled with what color the button should be using until I found the right reason to make the choice.

by Alexandrov Alexandr for Fireart Studio

12. failure

Failure is the best teacher. We have heard it for thousands of times, but in fact, it is true.

You will make some wrong designs, instead of modifying them because of trouble, but finding out the problems. Have you missed an important demand? Have you forgotten the proofreading? Or do you not pay more attention to other details?

There may be many failures, but if you do not find out the real problems, it will be very difficult to learn valuable things from them.

by Mary Kotyshova

13. imitates a person’s style

So far, you may have been very good at using your design tools, and are satisfied with your creative output.

Now adjust the direction and try to imitate others’ style. You will be surprised to see that it seems to be back to the starting point. Then, you start to learn new technology again. You can learn how Meg Robichaud draws so many characters in her illustrations, or how Pablo Stanley uses symbols efficiently and efficiently in his works.

by Meg

14. find a shortcut

In the spirit of eliminating design barriers and reducing mental labor, we find a faster, smarter and more effective method of work.

Shortcuts can be pre designed icon sets and classified photos, or a complete design system.

UI Kit (
Icon manager and icon library ( Ref=552)

15. reuse design

If one of your designs is successful, find out the reason and try to reuse it. You don’t have to copy the design document completely, but if you have done the work, there is no reason to reinvent the wheel.

After designing thousands of interfaces for various products, you will find that they are basically the same. Classify them and know when to use them.

by Steve Wolf

16. focus on users

So far, you have been improving your design skills. Now it’s time to improve your ability by focusing on users and solving their problems correctly.

In this process, you will learn a lot of user experience knowledge, but users are so different that you need to experience your entire career.

It will help you focus on solving a particular problem. It may be as small as designing an updated password process, but only if you go deep into it will you really understand how they work.

by TheGreenHorse

17. see people introduce their work

Nothing is more pleasant than seeing someone else’s introductions. Bad works are regarded as entertainment, but what about good works? That would be a good source of inspiration.

Watch someone take full control of the room and hold the attention of everyone present. This is absolutely exciting. You can almost feel a breeze coming from the expectation that surrounds the conference table.

Listen to how he speaks, how to suspend, how to move and where to stand. Remember his stories, jokes and how to reconcile the whole conversation, as if he were John Fox, who commanded Williams in Boston pop band.

18. look at others to do your work

It’s a strange feeling, because it’s like they get all the credit for working hard for you. But remember, you’re not your design.

Record how they present your design and compare it with your presentation. Are they fit? What can you learn from?

by Michele Rosenthal

19. show your work to your design team

Before you are ready to give your client a proposal, please demonstrate the evaluation within the team first. This is relatively safe, and they will be able to give you some good feedback.

When choosing your design, they will be smarter than their customers, so the questions they ask will help to strengthen your discussion, evidence and ideas.

20. show your design to the client or stakeholder

About 8 months ago, my design manager asked me to show my work to clients. I’m glad, I’m looking forward to it, and I’m so nervous.

But I finished it in the end. It’s not because I’m an ppt expert, but I’m very prepared. I did a lot of exercises inside, and my design was based on basic principles and patterns. Every part of my solution was carefully considered.

21. show your design to different stakeholders

Show your design to your customers, and let everything be natural. But customers want you to introduce them to the new marketing director or the new sales director.

This is a completely different occasion. You need to demonstrate your entire work to a person who may not know the problem.

22. introduce the work of others

To be an excellent designer, we need some skills to show the design of others.

You not only need to fully understand the design that you didn’t do, but you have to explain it, even if you don’t agree with the primary designer to put the main buttons there.

In fact, there is a very simple technique. You just need to say, “I will do it in many different ways, but it looks like this because… ”

Now imagine how the client would feel when he listened.

by Bene

23. listen to feedback

In our process, you will get a lot of feedback through step 23, good feedback and bad feedback.

Find out when to pay attention to details such as spacing and alignment, and when to comment on larger interaction processes. Bad feedback destroys a design and puts designers in vain.

 by Jenny Speirs

24. pay attention to value

Your design looks beautiful, and they can solve users’ problems.

But don’t forget the industry you serve.

Depending on the situation, less design may be as valuable to customers as a month’s delivery.

When you are already at this stage of the process, you are beginning to understand that your design is a tool for business value, not just beautiful pictures.

25. record design

I can’t tell you how much I learned about design from writing. When you need to explain the design process regularly, you will have a deeper understanding of this topic.
Not everything must be written as a magnificent philosophical work. It is also meaningful to write a tutorial to decompose the design or process into very simple and easy to understand words for other different levels of designers.

Try it. Maybe you like writing.


by Tea Tom


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