Let's get to know you first. Tell us about yourself.
I'm a 23 year old Website & UI Designer located in Tampa, Florida. I've been designing for about four years now. I graduated from Florida State University (Go Noles) in May of 2013 and moved back to Tampa where I found a job working full time as a UI Designer for learning software. A great design looks beautiful and solves problems. Understanding your users and their needs is critical when designing anything.
Cool, so what's the story behind your website and its design?
ThomasPalumbo.com is my personal portfolio. I felt it was important to code it from scratch. Part of my job is letting people know I have the skills to create sites so a Wordpress or dribbble portfolio were not options. My design is set out to accomplish a couple of simple goals. Display my work and skills in the easiest possible way to digest by potential clients and employers. With that goal in mind the functionality was able to take shape.
The design is uncluttered but still has personality. I display a backdrop of my home city and showcase my work with brief descriptions as to how the project was made and what it was made with. I give more detail about myself and what I do in my "About Me" section. Finally in the "Contact Me" section I add social links, my email, and my html (and downloadable) resume. The entire site is responsive as well.
What part of your website is your favourite, and why?
The website can scale well. By reusing CSS classes I can add more sections quickly and easily. Writing smart CSS is crucial and while I'm not an expert by any means I love evolving smarter, leaner CSS in my designs.
Is there anything you wish you knew when you first started building your website?
Early on I was pulling in Bootstrap for some basic features. I thought it was a good idea because it showed I could integrate bootstrap functionality into a website but it was hurting my page's performance. Since then I've hand coded my responsive grid, media queries and button styles. The site now has a couple of less items to load.
Technologies, languages, frameworks, or libraries?
Built using HTML, CSS, jQuery. I used SASS to speed up the workflow. I also mocked it up in Photoshop beforehand. Slicy also helped with retina images.
Any upcoming changes we should look out for?
I would like to create a basic template for each piece of work to link to. This page will act as a case study to go into more detail about my different projects. I would also like to work on some real mobile apps and not just concepts!