Although most of my blog posts are centered around my art, I wanted to take the time to talk about my journey into web development. My journey into web development and software engineering began a few years ago when my daughter asked for my help with programming on Roblox. I remember following a tutorial on adding points and coins to a game, but I was just copying what the developer was doing without really knowing what I was doing. However, I had so much fun creating this game, that I decided to see how I could use my skills as an artist to create other programs.
Growing up, computers were always a mystery to me. I didn’t have much exposure to them, and I didn’t really use one until I was in my late teens. In fact, I got into trouble at school once for accidentally sending a message to the entire network instead of just my class. It wasn’t until later that I realized how important that moment was to my journey.
As a first-generation American and a caregiver to my son who has Autism while homeschooling my daughter, I needed a flexible career that I could pursue from home. I knew my artistic background would come in handy for CSS and UX/UI, but my interest and scope went beyond that as I found out later on.
I started with popular resources like freecodecamp.com, W3Sschools, Khan Academy, and The Coding Train on YouTube. I also began building simple projects with JS using tutorials and reading through the official documentation for whatever language or library I was working with. I even joined a small bootcamp, but they asked me to pay $10,000 to finish the program, which wasn’t right for me. Instead, I found a veteran’s program that allowed me to attain a certificate in Web Design and then applied for an online school, Vets Who Code, a school dedicated to teaching veterans and their spouses how to code for free. At Vets Who Code, I was surrounded by some of the best developers and people I’ve ever met.
After completing the program, I landed my first job as a remote web designer using WordPress after applying to many jobs, where I discovered that I was good at not only designing websites, but also finding solutions for customers. I also discovered I could be very outspoken about ideas and concepts when working on a team. These are skills that I continue to develop today.
My interest in science and math also led me to explore the world of AI and machine learning. I’m now working with TensorFlow and Keras and developing personal projects. My hope is to continue on this path and put my knowledge to good use.
My story is proof that determination and a willingness to learn something new can take you far. It is easy to feel discouraged and give up, but persistence, as with anything, is key. Another key factor to my success was surrounding myself with people who supported my journey.
Despite facing obstacles and difficult circumstances, I continued to pursued my interests in web development and software engineering. As I continue on my journey, I look forward to creating impactful projects in the world of AI and web development. I will be posting some recent projects I have been working on and writing more about what I am learning in future posts. My next post will be on tips on how to focus your talents and skills so that you are able to succeed.