If you are the slightest bit passionate about web design you have heard of the big names in the industry: Zeldam, Clarke, Boulton, Cederholm, Hicks, Pieters, and so on. These are the people that command massive respect among the designer community and I want to be one of those people.

I don’t think I will ever be able to design as well as Jesse Bennett Chamberlain or  Cameron Moll, but I am going to try really hard.

Since I am finished with school I can now focus on achieving my goals and here is what I am going to do:

  1. sugarbakingNo more “standard” projects. The last few years designing websites for clients have been too straightforward. I meet with you, I ask you want you want done, and you say go. Rarely will the standard “run of the mill” websites be exciting or challenging. About 7 months ago I completed Sugar Baking that was such a great project to work on for 2 reasons: the client was amazing to work with and I had never built an ecommerce platform before. This is the type of project where I feel like a pushed my design and development skills to a whole new level.
  2. fowaBuild a network. I barely know anyone in the web design industry. Next year I will be going to my first web design conference (FOWA) and I know I will meet some really amazing people there. I don’t really use twitter to its full extent; there are so many amazing designers on there and I am going to more proactive in getting in touch with them.
  3. javascriptFocus on e-commerce. E-commerce is an underdeveloped area of the web and is a great opportunity to become an expert in the area. Next year I will open up my second e-commerce store, but this time around sell a physical good instead of digital ones. Delving deeper into UI and web analytics is another one of my goals for next year, but I need to brush up on my Ruby and Javascript before I begin to explore other areas.
  4. twitterGet an identity. My online presence is not great. I am on all the social networks, twitter, last fm, flickr, facebook and I have a blog – obviously, but when you google “Mark Dunkley” there are only a handful of pages related to me. Submitting my websites to CSS showcases, building a stronger portfolio, producing more quality content on the web, and expanding my professional network will help achieve this goal.

On a final note I want to mention 3 individuals that are close to my age and examples of where I want to be in the next couple years: Megan Fisher (at 23 she has already been a speaker at a FOWD), Tim Van Damme (an amazing 23 year old designer), Dustin Curtis (talented designer with a strong passion for UI and life).