Design vs. System Administration

sagewalkintheresagewalkinthere Posts: 99Member ■■□□□□□□□□
Hey y'all,

I've been struggling with getting the motivation to study lately. I really, really want to design stuff in photoshop - I'm always amazed at the beautiful web 2.0 site layouts and I'm always trying to build them in photoshop, and I love doing tutorials and learning new tricks.

Anyway, I'm in a position right now that is 50% html/graphics, and 50% sysadmin work. I could go either way. But the main thing for me is that I love to be creative, and I hate doing repeditive or boring work. I need variation and some randomness.

Should I continue to grow my web design skills and just work in that field and forget about sysadmin? Or should I go for the higher pay and just stay on the sysadmin path?

I'm kind of at a crossroads here... I would love some input. I know that I'm the only one who can make this decision, but I would love to know that y'all think.
A.A.S. Multimedia Web Design, MCTS 70-623, MCTS 83-640, MCP 70-270, A+
http://jasonereid.blogspot.com/

Comments

  • dynamikdynamik Posts: 12,314Banned ■■■■■■■■□□
    I think web design sucks ass (to put it delicately). It's fun to design something, but it's all tedious from there on out. Plus, it seems to be pretty competitive and doesn't pay as well. If you love it, go for it. I keep it as a freelance thing and do a few sites per year (getting fewer each year). You might want to consider keeping it as a hobby.
  • sagewalkintheresagewalkinthere Posts: 99Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Yeah, I hate it after the design stage too. HTML = icon_sad.gif
    A.A.S. Multimedia Web Design, MCTS 70-623, MCTS 83-640, MCP 70-270, A+
    http://jasonereid.blogspot.com/
  • XcluzivXcluziv Posts: 513Member
    Yea, I generally just like designing myself as well. PS is my thing!!!!
    LINKED | GTECH | NOTHINGBUTSHAREPOINT - BLOG AUTHOR

    "TRY NOT. DO. OR DO NOT. THERE IS NO TRY" - Yoda

  • rsuttonrsutton Posts: 1,029Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    I am a Network/Sys admin and I have never once thought of it as repetative. Actually one of the reasons I tell people why i like my job is because it is so different day to day. Maybe you arn't automating enough of your duties. :D

    Oh, and I just started using GIMP to do some web design. What a great program!
  • msteinhilbermsteinhilber Posts: 1,480Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    dynamik wrote: »
    I think web design sucks ass (to put it delicately). It's fun to design something, but it's all tedious from there on out. Plus, it seems to be pretty competitive and doesn't pay as well. If you love it, go for it. I keep it as a freelance thing and do a few sites per year (getting fewer each year). You might want to consider keeping it as a hobby.

    I agree with everything dynamik stated. I've done web design for clients but I often find the only times that I am ever taking on any projects like that are when things are slow in other areas that I could generate a profit.

    The big problem that I see with web design in general is it's a highly saturated market, and it's not just saturated by mediocre or better designer - it's saturated by a lot of what I would consider to be horrible designers mixed in with the decent and great designers. The majority of the clients that I ever worked with typically wanted just your basic web presence, nothing too flashy or anything - just basic static content. The most advanced anybody seemed to get with my clients was the occasional person that wanted a CMS so they could make their own changes relatively easily. Most of the clients that I was getting since they wanted basic, also wanted very basic pricing (i.e. inexpensive). This is probably partly to blame by the not so great designers doing it dirt cheap. Meanwhile, the people who wanted the flashy, interactive, dynamic driven websites usually went to those designers with a vast portfolio that demonstrated quality work in that realm.

    That all isn't the main reason I dislike doing it though. The reason I absolutely dread web design probably comes down to both the ability for the client as well as myself to properly communicate with one another as well as a lot of indecisiveness on the clients behalf. All too often I have a good idea of what they are looking for, I bounce some ideas and a basic outline of what things will look like before designing and then once it's designed they want something different. Then when I bill them for the time I already spent as well as the revisions they nag and complain about being billed extra. In my opinion, the amount of effort that goes into the whole process (communication, design, training if needed, etc) just isn't worth while for the amount of money it can bring in.

    That's why I like the system administration/networking side of things much better - there are less variables, the frame which you work within is more rigid. Since generally there are no aesthetics involved, but just a "it has to do this and that" you can implement a working solution and you won't hear "yea that works, but that server you installed is flat out ugly!".
  • TryntotechitTryntotechit Posts: 108Member
    I do agree with what the others are saying as far as the market being saturated. However, you have to do what you enjoy. If you love web design, be a web designer. Strive to be the best web designer that you can be. Everything comes down to what are you going to be happy doing "for the rest of your working career." You have to do whatever you are going to to be doing, not us. I know that I am planning on being a network admin one of these days. So far, that is want I want to do. Thats what I enjoy. I think that I will be happy do that job for multiple hours a day. You only live once! I'm sure that you know that being in a job that you really don't have a passion to do, sucks. And if you don't, trust me, IT DOES!!! Follow your heart. It will pay off. Good luck. Hope this helps.
    Taking 70-294 very soon...again
  • msteinhilbermsteinhilber Posts: 1,480Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Follow your heart. It will pay off. Good luck. Hope this helps.

    Just a small disclaimer on this line: If I followed my heart while I was working helpdesk, I would be in prison.
  • PC509PC509 CISSP, CEH, CCNA: Security/CyberOps, Sec+, CHFI, A+, Proj+, Server+, MCITP Win7, Vista, MCP Server 2 Oregon, USPosts: 772Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    I'd go for what you enjoy. Better to be happy than miserable. Although, a few sys admin skills won't hurt in the design. You'd know the back end stuff whereas others won't.

    Of course, I'm the opposite. I don't like the PS stuff, and love to code HTML/CSS/JavaScript/Etc in Notepad. I'm taking programming courses for my degree, and I'm awesome at it. I haven't really programmed a lot since I was a kid (Old C64, then 8088 PC...). So, I think I'm swaying towards the programming, rather than net admin. But, I'm focusing on both ATM, as I'm still undecided.
  • sagewalkintheresagewalkinthere Posts: 99Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the advice, everyone. I'm still not sure... I mean, I love designing and all, and hate coding, but I also don't have very good concentration for studying for certs, which makes it tough to get them. But the $$$ is a lot less for web design... icon_sad.gif Just not sure...
    A.A.S. Multimedia Web Design, MCTS 70-623, MCTS 83-640, MCP 70-270, A+
    http://jasonereid.blogspot.com/
  • dynamikdynamik Posts: 12,314Banned ■■■■■■■■□□
    PC509 wrote: »
    I'd go for what you enjoy. Better to be happy than miserable. Although, a few sys admin skills won't hurt in the design. You'd know the back end stuff whereas others won't.

    Of course, I'm the opposite. I don't like the PS stuff, and love to code HTML/CSS/JavaScript/Etc in Notepad. I'm taking programming courses for my degree, and I'm awesome at it. I haven't really programmed a lot since I was a kid (Old C64, then 8088 PC...). So, I think I'm swaying towards the programming, rather than net admin. But, I'm focusing on both ATM, as I'm still undecided.

    Yea, it's not the coding that bothers me. It's just usually tedious and repetitious after the design is finalized. I can do HTML, CSS, JS, PHP, etc. in Notepad (though I prefer Notepad++ because of the sweet highlighting). You should look into PHP/MySQL or C#/ASP.NET/SQL Server if you enjoy web development.
    Thanks for the advice, everyone. I'm still not sure... I mean, I love designing and all, and hate coding, but I also don't have very good concentration for studying for certs, which makes it tough to get them. But the $$$ is a lot less for web design... icon_sad.gif Just not sure...

    You're going to have to be a phenomenal designer to get by without coding of any sort. People like that are not fun to work with because they just assume because they made it in Photoshop, it'll be easy to get the same look in a web browser.
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