Managing TemplatePanic for so long doesn’t mean that I was a template master from the very beginning of TemplatePanic website. When I created TemplatePanic for the first time, I know nothing about making website templates or blog templates. It was the first time I learn to be a blogger.
I have a basic knowledge about HTML and I had a little experience making static HTML page using HTML editor like Microsoft FrontPage or Macromedia Dreamweaver. This knowledge is very useful in order to learn more. Making a website template has very close relation with coding and scripting. That is why a little HTML knowledge will be quite helpful.
The other thing that as important as coding and scripting is the knowledge of imaging software. Making a template design of course is related with graphic design or imaging. Most of the template is containing suitable graphic which can relate to the topic or theme of the template. For this imaging works I am using Adobe Photoshop. I think it is the best imaging software ever, and I like to use it. Luckily when I was working for a local internet service provider when I first graduate from university, I learned a lot about Adobe Photoshop. I met so many friend who master Photoshop and willing to share their skill and knowledge to me, and here I am now, I’m experienced using Photoshop and I really enjoy using it.
The good way to learn to make a website template is from website templates that already available. Many websites offer free website templates or of course you can also get website templates from paid sites to get more quality website template.
The first thing you need to do to a website or blog template you already download is doing an ‘operation’ on that template. Once you’ve downloaded the template, you have full access to the code, so you can learn the actions the developers used in achieving an effect. Try to understand the CSS (Cascading Style Sheet) and do some adjustment on it. You can start by changing the color code, font style and the size of the column. Don’t miss finding the location of the image, get the images and modify or change them with your own custom images. It is cool if you can at least change the header with your own custom header like your photos.
Each effort will produce result. From trial and error, doing analysis and trying to understand the codes, slowly I began to understand gradually.