September 26, 2005

Web Design Online Training: Lynda.com

Lynda.comI discovered Lynda Weinman's Lynda.com years ago. Back then, the Lynda.com crew offered what I assumed to be professional level instruction in a number of web-building programs at their clinic in Ojai, California. They also offered training on CD ROM, though I don't recall which was introduced first. The clinic has been closed, but they're now got an Online Training Library.

So what? Let's say you're adept at Photoshop, but want to use Illustrator for its vector capabilities. Well, Illustrator is not really so much like Photoshop, which you'll discover the first time you try it. Like Photoshop, but … not really at all.

How about Flash? Having walked through a couple of hours of Flash's internal Tutorials, I have to say that loads of small text including a number of industry terms with which one isn't familiar and a screenshot here and there are not the happiest way to get up to professional speed with complex programs.

About this time, one begins to wish for someone who could explain it simply, with examples and tricks of the trade. This is precisely what Lynda.com's Online Training Library does: Quicktime movies, big enough to see clearly, narrated by knowledgeable people. They simply walk you through the programs onscreen, narrate throughout, and you see precisely what they're doing onscreen. Bite-size chunks. Including those tricks of the trade, and stuff you may not know about the programs you're already familiar with. Really. $25/month. On your schedule. Covering a huge list of programs — not just graphic and web design.

I also found Webreference.com's explanation of Photoshop and Channels helpful.

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