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Using Your Desktop Publishing Skills to Make Static Websites and Blogs

written by: KateG•edited by: Daniel P. McGoldrick•updated: 8/30/2009

If you, as a savvy desktop publisher want to make the most of your skills, then taking your color sense and layout genius over to web development and blog design may be a smart move. Find out how here.

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    As a desktop publisher you have a wide range of skills that you can tap into to expand your business and bring your unique perspective and amazing designs to a whole new set of clients. If you are ready to take that next stop then this article can help you out. Think of it as your road map, a guide to expanding your tiny design empire. Today we are going to look at transmuting your skills for use in static site designs and blog templates.

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    What is A Static Site?

    For those of you unfamiliar with the term a static site is what most people think of as a website, minus the blogs and social media sites. If the contents of a site generally stay the same from day to day then that site can be called static.

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    What is a Blog?

    For those of you who have been living without an internet connection for the last five years a blog is a specific type of site where content is updated regularly. This is usually daily, but could be weekly or even monthly. A good blog design has one unified home page and a new sub domain URL is automatically created for each post as it is published. The process is automatic. Each page has a look and feel that draws on the visual elements of the main page of the site.

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    What Skills Can I Captalize On?

    The number one transferable skills that you, as a desktop publisher bring to the table is your strong eye for layout. While it is time that there are only a few rules that will hold true for every site, you will find many sites similar to print publications. Some sites will have layouts similar to flyers, while others will be like newsletters. Your professional judgment and experience with layouts will give you get a leg up in web design.

    You can also make good use of your strong sense of color and shape. If you have to design a sites color scheme, or even a basic logo for the site you will be in the clear. Think about it. You already know how to create the needed graphic elements and match them well.

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    What Skills Will I Need?

    Static Sites

    If you don’t know how to code that will be your biggest stumbling block. Even to design the most basic of static pages you need to know HTML. Learning XML is also a good idea and as your progress CSS. Don’t worry too much about having to learn three different languages. They are very similar and many of the principals are identical.


    When it comes to blogs CSS is the design standard. If you want to develop a blog template this is your target language to learn. XML and HTML can be very helpful when dealing with RSS feeds integrating widgets.

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    Can’t I Just Use A WYSIWYG Editor?

    Trying to use a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editor for professional level designs will leave you at a real disadvantage. No matter how good the software you buy is, will always lack the flexibility that hand written code gives you as a professional.

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    Now you can get learning and expand your designs to a whole new group of clients. Best of luck.