The question of whether a graphic designer should know how to code has been discussed many times over, with good arguments made for both sides. For example, see Web Designers Who Can’t Code and Designers Shouldn’t Code.
Without rehashing the same arguments, I believe that if one wants to be a solid designer with a focus on on web design, then it is imperative to at the very least understand front-end development (HTML, CSS and maybe some JS), if not be handy at it.
I think I’m pretty handy at it but I have a lot of room for improvement. So when I came across the opportunity to attend HackerYou’s summer academy to learn Ruby on Rails, I jumped on it. I will be spending the next 2 months at the Shopify office in Ottawa, working with some awesome people, and hopefully my front end-dev skills will be all the better for it.
Rails, being a full stack web development framework, includes HTML and CSS. In order to build a functioning application, and one that is visually pleasing as well, will require me to improve my skills in front-end development. I am really excited to get started, and can’t wait to see where I finish at the end of August!