Why Learn Sketch?

Master Sketch, the UX design tool for creating vector graphic illustrations of web layouts, and open up a world of career opportunities in Web Design. The tool is particularly beneficial for Web Designers, UX Designers, and Digital Designers looking to build and test web applications and interfaces.

Key Insights

  • Sketch is a UX design tool designed to create vector graphic illustrations and design webpage layouts, predominantly used on macOS machines.
  • The tool is highly advantageous for Web Designers, UX Designers, and Digital Designers, aiding in building and testing web applications and interfaces.
  • With a large community and numerous free resources, Sketch allows users to improve their web design skills and website quality.
  • Beyond professional use, Sketch is beneficial for amateurs and in-house creatives looking to build a solid web presence, despite not being able to code a webpage.
  • Salaries for these positions can vary widely but being proficient in Sketch can increase job opportunities and potential income in the field of web design.
  • Noble Desktop offers professional Sketch training for both beginner and experienced users.

Sketch is a UX design tool for creating vector graphic illustrations of web layouts. Given its capabilities and developer and community support, Sketch is an ideal program for aspiring Web Designers to learn. Sketch users can prepare for web design careers, practice their craft and learn to design better webpages, and use Sketch to build their online presence. 

Here you will look into the different career paths for which Sketch skills are advantageous and understand how learning this program can enhance your professional life. Regardless of your overall goals, learning Sketch is a valuable and impressive skill to add to your resume. 

What is Sketch?

Sketch is a design tool for creating user interface (UI) layouts for webpages and mobile applications. Sketch is a vector-graphics design program, meaning that the assets created can be modified and resized for optimal performance on screens of any size. Sketch’s significant features include its easy customization tools, digital collaboration tools, and, most importantly, Sketch symbols. Sketch symbols let users create reusable design elements that can be modified individually, allowing users to build layout assets like buttons and drop-down menus, which all look the same but function differently as the design demands. Advanced Sketch users can use the built-in tools to make even more complex, interactive symbols to optimize their workflow and the functionality of their design.

Sketch originated on the macOS app store and is only available on machines that run off macOS. Therefore, the program can be slightly limiting but is built with the specific functionalities of this operating system in mind. Sketch has features common to almost all macOS native programs, such as touch bar support, Retina and non-Retina displays, and native font rendering. These features allow macOS device users to learn Sketch more efficiently and quickly pick up advanced skills. Web designers can also create layouts designed to operate on devices like next-generation iPhones. The functionalities of Sketch designs won’t be limited to these devices, but the program gives users the tools to optimize their layouts for specific platforms.

In recent updates, Sketch has added new features to make collaboration and prototyping easier for teams of users. Sketch lets designers work together to build clickable prototypes of their webpages that designers can distribute for testing and iteration, a crucial feature of any user-interface design software. And Sketch is constantly evolving to meet the needs of its users.

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Read more about what Sketch is and why you should learn it. 

What Can You Do with Sketch?

Sketch allows web designers to create layouts for webpages and mobile applications. Users can create vibrant, interactive webpage models for testing and development using text, images, graphic designs, and artboards. Because Sketch is a vector graphics illustration tool, these designs are easily reusable and scalable. They can be optimized to work on any-sized screen and used in multiple contexts in any design layout. Sketch also recently added advanced features for collaboration and prototyping, allowing team members to work together more efficiently to build model user interfaces.

Sketch’s most unique features are symbols and reusable digital interface assets that can be replicated across multiple pages. Sketch lets users define symbol characteristics to repurpose them as the design warrants. In addition, users can manually override the function of individual symbols, letting users give each asset a different interactive functionality without having to start from scratch. More advanced users can build complicated, multi-purpose symbols that make designing interfaces a breeze.

Sketch also has a robust community of designers and developers who are constantly building new adds-on and templates for Sketch. Users who learn Sketch can take advantage of these resources to make working with the program more straightforward and efficient. Since this community is so active, new resources are available daily.

Common Professional Uses for Sketch

Sketch is used predominantly by Web Designers, Graphic Designers, and other User Experience (UX) Designers tasked with building assets for handover to Web Developers when a team is building a digital project. Sketch lets these designers build and test web applications and interfaces to ensure that their layouts and outlines meet the needs of their teams and clients.

Web Designers: Web Designers create the visual design and functional layout of a client’s webpage. They guide the creative vision of a project and use programs like Sketch to produce prototypes that will be handed over to Web Developers to code and launch. This field works primarily with the graphic design side of web design, building assets and interfaces rather than programming webpages, so Web Designers won’t need to learn how to code. Sketch designers may also be tasked with designing plug-ins, add-ons, or templates for use by other Web Designers in different projects.

User Experience (UX) Designers: UX Designers ensure that a website’s user interface provides a positive user experience and is optimized for use and accessibility. UX Designers aren’t strictly invested in specific projects but perform testing and market research to observe and analyze user behavior. They use this data to produce models or philosophies of webpage design for other Web Designers to incorporate into their work. UX Designers use programs like Sketch to build prototypes for research purposes. They may also learn fundamental data science skills to test their interfaces better.

Digital Designers: Digital Designers are professional creatives who build the elements of webpages and other digital applications. Digitals Designers primarily work with tools like Illustrator and Photoshop to build digital assets, but they may find themselves tasked with building specific, interactive webpage components. In these cases, they will use programs like Sketch to add interactivity and functionality to the assets they are building. 

Build Better Webpages

Sketch users can hone their web design skills because of the large community of users and the versatility of the symbols tool. UX design can be challenging, particularly for users unfamiliar with the principles of the field. The large community of developers and designers is a boon to Sketch, providing a wealth of tutorials, guides, and pre-generated assets. Users attempting to build more complex interfaces can draw on an extensive pre-existing library, so they rarely have to create something entirely from scratch.

Sketch’s symbols tool enables users to improve their designs by building reusable interactive interface assets—like buttons or drop-down menus—that can be shared and repurposed across multiple projects. Users can also change the specific functionalities of certain symbols without impacting others. And users can easily make changes to all the symbols in a file, helping to optimize their work and allowing them to add more complex interactivity to their designs.

Build your own Brand

Not everyone who uses Sketch is going to be a professional web designer. However, since the program is relatively simple, even amateur designers can learn Sketch to help them build better webpages. Small business owners, community outreach specialists, club sponsors, event organizers, local sports leagues, and musicians are just a few examples of non-professionals who can benefit from learning how to design a compelling and interactive webpage.

Since the program is relatively easy to work with, new users may find that they only need a bit of training before they are ready to design their webpages. Sketch is only a design tool, so users still need to pass the design to a Web Developer for coding. But understanding what you want your webpages to look like is a vital first step and an excellent way to get a feel for web development and design to discover if you are also interested in learning to code webpages.

How to Start Learning Sketch

Students interested in learning Sketch have several training method options available: in-person instruction, live online instruction, or self-paced learning with on-demand courses or free online resources. Find Sketch classes near you with Noble Desktop’s course search tool that can help students find the right option, regardless of their preferred methodology.

Live instruction options are available both in-person and online, enabling students to learn in their preferred environment. Expert instructors teach all courses; even in an online setting, students can interface directly with their teachers to ask questions and receive feedback. Most live instruction courses boast small class sizes, meaning that students won’t be competing for the attention of their instructors. In-person instruction can be somewhat restricted by a student’s location, so students should explore the options available in their area.

Students who need or desire more flexible learning options may wish to consider taking an on-demand asynchronous course to learn Sketch. These courses are ideal for students with family or work obligations or whose schedule prevents them from attending a regularly scheduled class. Courses are available in various formats, letting students dictate their learning pace and giving them more control over when and where they study Sketch. However, these courses may require students to troubleshoot for themselves any issues that arise.

The final option is free online tutorials and resources for learning Sketch. These courses are more limited in scope, and while they are a good introduction, they likely aren’t sufficient for students looking to use Sketch professionally. Still, they are excellent starting points for new users. The Web Design and Development playlist on Noble’s official YouTube page provides users with many free tutorials, including an in-depth look into the functional differences between Sketch and its largest competitors, Figma and Adobe XD. The Sketch website also offers a handful of free training resources.

Read the complete guide on how to learn Sketch.

Learn Sketch with Hands-on Training at Noble Desktop

Students looking to master Sketch may wish to consider any Sketch classes and bootcamps offered through Noble Desktop. These classes, which range from short seminars offering students a basic understanding of Sketch to in-depth career skills training courses, give students the tools they need to use Sketch in their personal and professional lives. These courses are available in person at Noble’s Manhattan campus or live online from anywhere in the United States. Courses are taught by experts with whom students can interface directly, and class sizes are kept small, even online. So, students can ask questions and receive timely, personalized feedback on their work. Plus, courses include a one-year free retake option. Students can repeat the course to review a lesson that gave them trouble, attend a seminar they missed, or just get more hands-on practice with Sketch.

Students seeking in-depth training in Sketch should consider Noble’s Sketch Bootcamp. This intensive skills training course teaches students to use the basic and advanced features of Sketch, such as its layout design tools, interactive elements, and prototyping capabilities. Students get hands-on instruction in building web layouts using text, shapes, and images, all built with Sketch’s vector graphics illustration tools. They then learn how to optimize those illustrations for web and mobile viewing, including Hi-res and Retina displays. Finally, students receive hands-on training in using Sketch symbols, including how to override symbol functions to make them work differently and how to alter their functions universally after they have been implemented.

Noble also offers Sketch training as part of its immersive, career-focused UX & UI Design Certificate program. This course is designed to help aspiring Web and user experience (UX) Designers receive comprehensive career training and mentorship. Students learn to use an array of design tools, including Sketch, Figma, and Adobe XD, and receive hands-on training by working through practical exercises that reflect the work they will do professionally. Students also learn the best practices of UX design and how to best conduct user research and analysis. By the end of the course, students get the opportunity to have one-on-one career mentorship discussions with trained experts in the field of UX/UI design, and they will have built a sample design portfolio to take with them into the job market.

Key Insights

  • Sketch is a versatile UX design tool built to run on macOS machines. It allows users to create vector graphic illustrations and design webpage layouts for testing and prototyping.
  • Sketch is used in many web design career fields, and Sketch users can improve their job opportunities as Web Designers, UX Designers, or Digital Designers.
  • Owing to its accessibility and large community, Sketch users can learn how to build better webpages. An abundance of free resources optimizes workflow and helps improve designs.
  • Sketch is also a valuable tool for amateur creatives to know if their group or organization wants to use in-house talent to build its web presence. Sketch can’t code a webpage, but it can give users the tools to work on functionality with developers.
  • Professional Sketch training for novice and experienced users is available through Noble Desktop.

How to Learn Web Design

Master web design with hands-on training. Web design is the creative process of building functional, attractive websites with tools like HTML/CSS, JavaScript, WordPress, and Figma and an understanding of user interface (UI) design principles.

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