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How to Become a Front-End Developer (Pt. 4)


Karl P.
Front-End Developer

The fourth part in our series on becoming a front-end developer.

A Toronto-based creative, before becoming managing director at Motion Season, Karl was a senior developer at Crispin Porter + Bogusky where he was known by his team as “the excellent developer with amazing design skills.”

Check out his advice for seasoned as well as up and coming developers.

How did you start coding and what was the first language you learned?

I started coding when I was in high school during my evenings/nights as a hobby. I first started by hand coding HTML4 in notepad.

If someone wanted to learn to code, what would your one piece of advice be to get them started?

Don't give up too easily! At the beginning it’s going to be hard and it will take some time before everything comes together, but eventually it will all make sense.

How do you network/meet other developers?

Friends of friends and LinkedIn usually work very well.

As a developer, what resource do you rely on the most to do your job?

Stack Overflow is the resource I use the most. Nothing beats being able to search for a specific problem and have answers from developers all over the world available in seconds.

How often do clients request or expect you to have design skills (and how do you feel about that?)

As the gap between design and front-end development gets ever smaller, I think it is expected. I have a design background so it's not a problem for me.

Agency vs. corporate environment for development, what are the pros and cons?

Agencies are faster paced, but more fun. You get lots of perks and usually have direct access to upper management. With a corporate environment there’s more red tape and things move slower, but then again you have higher job security.

What do think the biggest front-end development trend will be in 2014?

I think we’ll continue to see the gap between design and front-end development shrink as browser support for CSS3 continues to grow.

What brands/companies are doing cool stuff right now from a front-end development perspective?

Carlsberg, Adidas and Mercedes just launched some cool sites.

As always, we want to thank Karl for helping be an ambassador to the world of front-end development.

If you’re curious to know what a FED job description looks like, check our Quick Hire page.

And when you’re ready to get a front end development job, be sure to connect with a Vitamin T agent.

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