My main tip is Code by hand!
There are a lot of tools about on the web that allows you to drag and drop to create a web site these are known as a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) but to be like the professionals, you need to learn how to code by hand. HTML is easy to learn and it only takes a few lines of code to create your 1st web page.
Use CSS to style your website using an external style sheet, this should be done by hand too. CSS is simple to learn in a few months and once you can code HTML and CSS by hand pat yourself on the back because all you need now is to practice and read magazines and blog posts etc. to learn more useful tips and techniques
So here are my top tips on modern web design.
- Don’t use plain flat colours for huge sections of a site. This looks very old school! use Gradients, Gradients are lot more interesting than just plain colours. And add an element of 3d when used with buttons and logos.
Here are some examples:
- Don’t forget white is a colour too and used properly can be very effective. Giving the layout a nice clean effect
- Add textures to an image to create a unique effect. Most commonly used on the header or background to make them more unique
Here are some good examples:
- Add reflections to logos or heading text can create a nice shiny clean effect.
View a tutorial here: http://snipurl.com/1yt5vs
- Instead of using 90 degree corners on your website use css3 to create rounded corners giving it a more modern look.
Check out my tutorial here: http://snipurl.com/1yt6d5
- Add dimension to your sites using 3 dimensional images or if you have a special offer banner on your site instead of slapping it on, add a curl to it making it look like it is peeling of the page.
Here is a simple tutorial to creating a page curl effect: http://snipurl.com/1yt6ka
- Use a creative solution for your navigation.
Here is a good example of creative navigation:http://snipurl.com/1yt6q2
- Use web 2.0 social media icons like Facebook and twitter.
Get some icons here:
Using the above tips, be creative and search online for Web design Inspiration to give you an idea on how to create a unique pleasing modern website. Practice makes perfect, you won’t be a web designing guru overnight. Just stick to it and don’t give up.