The Complete Online Video Course
The Complete Online Video Course
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Let me save you some time. Honestly, there's only one reason to read anything on this page, and it's this: you want to learn how to create great-looking user interfaces.
If that’s not you, you can bounce along now. No hard feelings.
(Or sign up for free design tutorials/articles, and leave it at that)
OK. Still with me?
I'm going to paint a little picture. You can tell if me if this is you or not. You want to learn UI design, but you feel it's confusing and open-ended. You find the advice out there vague, contradictory, and not really practical.
When you look at design topics like typography, color, or process, you’re thinking: crap, I can’t do this!
And what makes for beautiful design seems like some mix of:
I'm all too familiar with these feelings.
When I was a developer and PM, I felt this way constantly. I saw all these awesome-looking designs, and could even tell you which ones I liked the best, but when it came to recreating something similar for myself, I was hopeless.
I saw UI designers as magical creatures who sprinkle mysterious design dust over any wireframe and make it shine. It seemed like some art school voodoo that was completely inaccessible to others – myself included.
But enough was enough. I decided to learn UI design.
Everyone’s reasons for learning user interface design are different. If you’re already a developer, a PM, a UX designer, etc., why develop this totally separate skill?
Let’s break it down:
For me, I had left my job to become a freelance UX designer, and my portfolio looked about as good as a Pentagon Powerpoint. Not to mention every one of my clients was asking: “hey, now that you made these wireframes, can you do the actual designs?” It was clear I could offer more to my clients if my end product wasn’t sketched out boxes and arrows.
So how do you learn UI design in 2021?
One thing’s for sure: paying full tuition for a multi-year degree in Graphic Design or Visual Communication makes zero sense.
Let’s add it up. That’s tens of thousands of dollars for prerequisites, unrelated courses, and barely-applicable theory.
Then, when you graduate, you'd have $20,000+ in debt – and still have to learn a bevy of new technologies, workflows, and skills.
And when you get hired, you'd have to learn just as much on the job as everyone else.
Sadly, for me, there was not a great way to learn UI design. At least, not actual, pragmatic, finish-the-design-in-front-of-you UI skills. Now, a bunch of dev bootcamps are popping up – and there are some for UX designers, with a lesson or two on aesthetics, but paltry pickings for the aspiring UI designer. Rough, right?
When I learned UI design, I had to do it the hard way. Largely self-taught, making progress an inch at a time. In the end, I learned the aesthetics of apps the same way I’ve learned any creative endeavor: cold, hard analysis. And shameless copying of what works. I’ve worked 10 hours on a UI project and billed for 1. The other 9 were the wild flailing of learning.
During those hours, I came to have a disdain for the theory-heavy blabbering that plagues so much design writing. You know the type? It’s all about color theory, the golden ratio, grids, etc. – and while it seems useful, it isn’t clear how exactly it makes your design better. There was only one metric that mattered to me: could this knowledge help me improve the design I was working on?
Let’s fast-forward a few years. Now, I’ve designed interfaces for clients like Amazon, Soylent, Roam Research, and more, and made hundreds of thousands of dollars doing it. I’ve circled the globe freelancing from a dozen countries. From enterprise systems to personal side-projects, I’m confident in my ability to design whatever I need to – and have it look awesome.
“But I don’t know Arial from Helvetica” you cry. How will you ever become confident in design?
I thought you’d never ask.
I’ve been watching Erik Kennedy’s Learn UI Design course to bone up a bit... If you're serious about wanting to get better at design, this is the course for you.”
Learn UI Design is an incredibly comprehensive course that will set you on a path to becoming a professional UI Designer. The course goes way beyond the surface-level type of stuff that you read in blog posts—this is deep, practical knowledge straight from an industry professional.”
Learn UI Design's straightforward approach, illustrated with real-life examples and tutorials, was extremely helpful and eye-opening. I would highly recommend this course for UX designers wanting to add UI design to their toolkit.”
This hands-on course is easily the most effective way I've found to learn UI design”
I'm a left-brained engineer, and Learn UI Design has given me hope that I won't have to rely on someone else to make my interfaces look right. I now see creating beautiful UIs as a fun blend of methodical problem-solving tactics. P.S. One of my favorite bits is the section on how Facebook uses color – it blue my mind!”
Over 26 hours of video lessons, filled with strategies and live examples covering all major areas of UI design. Watch me, Erik, as I actually design dozens of examples right in front of you.
Learn UI Design works on phones and tablets too, so you can watch from your desk or on the go.
Dozens of assignments to hone your design skills. Then get feedback in the community chat.
Old-school? No doubt. But it works.
Get access to a series of PDFs with key design tips and tricks. I keep these hanging on my office wall — you’ll want to too.
Come for the design feedback, stay for the community. Learn alongside other aspiring UI designers.
Get Course Notifications
Go from “I don’t have an eye for design” to being able to confidently design interfaces for any site or app. This course covers enough knowledge for you to go and get hired as a UI designer.
Get a practical foundation in all of the areas you feel like you don’t have a clue:
Note: if you want to hear about design theory, about “rhythm” and the “golden ratio”, etc., you’ll have to go elsewhere. This course is only the industry-tested lessons I’ve learned and used on the job. Think of it more like on-the-job-training or a course taught by an industry professional, rather than ivory tower philosophizing.
I made this course to be the single best way to learn UI design. It’s far more in-depth than a simple video or article, but way cheaper and easier than going to art school (and you don’t have to quit your day job!).
The Learn UI Design course is chocked full of live video demos. Watch as we generate dozens of layouts, elements, color schemes, and more. From blank canvas to finished design, you'll see how the process looks at every step of the way.
Articles can have good information, and slide decks can be illustrative – but live videos combine the best of both worlds and then some. In addition, I've augmented the videos with screenshots of hundreds of the best interfaces for web and mobile. We'll talk about the very best of what's out there. But the focus is on opening up Sketch (or Figma) and doing it for ourselves.
Think of it this way: I've designed these videos to be like watching over my shoulder, as I share the tricks, tips, and frameworks that have helped me design UI every day for companies around the world.
We're going to dive into and break down every major area of interface design.
Which lesson are you going to do first?
The color videos BLEW MY MIND! This is EXACTLY what I’ve needed to learn for years. I could never name it, but you just showed me. I’ve been paying attention to color for decades, and have NEVER seen this ANYWHERE. Thank you, Erik!”
Fonts have always been a complete mystery to me. But just from watching just the first two typography videos, I am actually capable of pairing fonts – with exquisite results! Learn UI Design's pragmatic approach to design has taught me infinitely more than what reading any design books ever did!”
I’m partially red-green colorblind, and I never thought I could ‘get' color. I just watched Secondary UI Colors and had a bunch of ‘aha’ moments. These last two videos hit a serious home run, and lifted the veil. I never realized how easy colors actually were. THANK YOU!”
Learn UI Design includes access to three things:
26+ hours of video content, along with cheat sheets, top resources, and skill-building homework assignments.II.
Get personal feedback on your designs – homework assignment, personal projects, and more.III.
Dozens of sample redesign videos I’ve done from student submissions. 30+ hours of narrated design content.
There is no other course that covers so extensively the skills you need to design beautiful UI, as well as the skills you need to be a good designer (and it’s more than just pretty pictures– see unit VII).
Let’s take a closer look at each of the 3 parts.
Work through it lesson by lesson, or skip around to what you’re most curious about at the moment. I get it — 26 hours of video is a lot, even watching at 2x speed. But every minute is something I wish I had known when I started designing UI.
Learning design is a tough thing to do alone. Wouldn’t it be nice if you had someone to ask questions, get feedback, and bounce ideas off of?
With Learn UI Design, you’ll get full access to a special Slack Channel where you can do all of that:
Founder, Learn UI Design
Humble brag, but relevant: I’ve probably seen more beginner UI designs than anyone on earth 🙈. 10,000+ submissions later, I’m still in the Slack channel, answering questions, giving feedback, and working to improve the course.
Product Designer, Facebook
Leah took Learn UI Design in late 2018 and was hired by facebook a few months later. Now she’s back, this time as a Community Mentor, doling out wisdom on UI, UX, process, and career.
Lead Designer, Threefold Systems
Coming in hot from County Wexford, Ireland, Shane took Learn UI Design in 2017, and used the lessons from it to get hired as a designer – and promoted to lead – within one year. Look out for Shane’s hard-hitting feedback – delivered in a pleasant Irish lilt.
Senior Designer, Ob’vious
As a self-taught designer (coming from the world of cartography 🗺), Jenny quickly realized there’s a large gap between useless theory and practical design advice. Learn UI Design resonated with her when she took it in 2019, and after getting promoted shortly thereafter, she now returns as a student mentor.
Completely separate from the main lessons of the course, the Live Redesign Vault is 30+ hours of video recordings of me, Erik, redesigning student submissions.
The events are live – and all students are invited. But the vault is where they’re cataloged and tagged by color, fonts, overall brand, and platform – so you can reference them for inspiration and best practices.
As with the video lessons, no rush. You have lifetime access.
When it comes to learning how to create beautiful designs, this is the most comprehensive course on earth:
I’ll be the first to admit this course is not for everyone. And while there is a 30-day 100% money-back guarantee, I want to save you the hassle of signing up, unless you’re in a very specific demographic:
Short: it’s about UI, but tangentially covers UX as well.
Long: UX (“how it works”) and UI (“how it looks”) are sister disciplines. It’s hard to separate them. The aim of this course is to help you make things that look great, but there’s zero point in doing that if the usability is poor.
Therefore: I reference topics and ideas from UX constantly in this course, but Learn UI Design is not about them, per se. If you're more interested in a UX design course, check out Learn UX Design.
Why? Because I’ve already given away a lot of similar content for free. If you want to get a feel for the teaching style, types of tactics, and things I talk about, I recommend looking at 7 Rules for Gorgeous UI or watching my Youtube videos.
The "7 Rules" article clocks in at 5,000 words, and has been read by over a million people, and referenced on basically every major design mailing list. It’s a great place to start, but if you find either the article or the video useful, you’ll very likely love this course.
(Edit: I have released one lesson for free, though I may take it down)
I most-highly recommend Sketch, Figma, and Adobe XD for students. However, since they all have such similar interfaces, functionality, and even shortcut keys, it matters less which one you pick and more that you simply have a good reason for picking one. Students have successfully completed the course in all 3 apps.
It's worth noting that because Figma is cross-platform (Windows, Mac, web) and free for basic usage (excluding teams and cross-file libraries), it's probably the most accessible for getting started quickly.
Yes – there's a 30-day 100% money-back guarantee.
Try Learn UI Design for 30 days. If you like it, great – you've got lifetime access to the 48 lessons, homework assignments, and resources. Not to mention that over time, I'll be adding new lessons and improving existing ones. And who will have access to 100% of the new material? You will, you lucky dog.
First of all, smart thinking!
Here's a guide for your employer that goes over common questions for businesses enrolling their employees in Learn UI Design, including:
Groups of 5+ seats get a 30% discount. Groups of 10+ seats get a 45% discount. Groups of 20+ seats get a 60% discount. Please contact me personally.
Learn UI Design is created to bring you from zero experience to a professional level of UI design skills. Although many students have entered with formal training in visual design, the majority have none.
On the flip side, if you're considering Learn UI Design, but feel you may be too advanced for the course, feel free to email me your portfolio, and I'll let you know how you compare to other beginning students.
As soon as you sign up, you will get immediate access to the entire video series and an invitation to the Slack channel.
Yes, all students have lifetime access to the course.
As long as this course exists, you will be able to watch any video, complete any homework assignment, and see any resource. You can start the course the minute you buy it, or a year later – it's up to you.
Hey! My name is Erik Kennedy, and I’m an independent UX + UI designer in beautiful Seattle, WA.
My clients have ranged from startups to Fortune 100, and have included companies like Soylent, Amazon, Roam Research, and more.
I’ve spoken here and abroad at businesses, meetups, and universities (like UC Berkeley and Yale). In addition, my design writing has been read by over a million people.
But before all that, I was in school for engineering. That’s right – a developer. So when I first tried my hand at design, I thought I was doomed.
It looked awful.
Of course, I had my excuses. I didn’t go to art school. I didn’t know crap about aesthetics.
I majored in engineering – it’s almost a badge of pride to build something that looks awful.
However, the passion for design stuck. And I ended up teaching myself UI design the same way I’ve learned anything: cold, hard analysis, like I said above.
To cut it as a designer, I had to come up with tricks & tactics I could apply to whatever app I was working on in the moment. I mixed those strategies with the best of what I could find scattered across a myriad of books and blog posts.
And it worked. Here I am.
Still kickin’. Still designing.
You’ve read this far, so let’s talk money. The simple fact is, companies pay for good UI design. They know they want to “be like [Apple, AirBnB, insert company here]”, but they don’t know how. You can, though. It’s a learnable set of skills, and it’s valuable.
Before being a freelance UX/UI Designer, I was a Program Manager at Microsoft, one of the highest-paying software companies in the nation. Two jobs. Where do you think I made more money?
Know the answer? It ain’t Microsoft.
On top of that, my wife and I spent a year literally circling the globe on a trip we’ll never forget. It was an amazing opportunity, but it was only possible because UI design is a hot commodity.
(By the way, freelancing is not everyone’s dream, but it is nice – and if you choose to do it, you’ll want to really dive into the video on presenting your designs – it’ll be pure gold for anyone who does client work)
This sort of bragging is not something I'd do to anyone I just met, but I'm trying to sell a product, so cut me a bit of slack, eh? We'll keep moving along, but I want to hear you say it to yourself: people pay for good design.
Learn UI Design is great! Tons of ACTIONABLE tips and hours of practical advice on all important design topics – positioning, alignment, spacing, typography, colour… What I found to be the best part is when Erik fires up Sketch to show you how to apply the theory on real UI designs. I feel much more confident when approaching a new design project after going through the course!”
Learning from Erik, I was able to bring a cohesive style to my organization’s enterprise application. Not only does it look WAY better, it's also more usable. I never thought design would be my thing, but I'm 10x more confident with this stuff now. Highly recommended.”
This course really helped develop my eye for UI design. I am much more able to identify needed improvements to a design, to communicate why they are important, and to quickly find relevant examples. My UI designs look much more professional than before.”
Learn UI Design is the best UI instruction I've found. Erik's explanations were spot-on, and his encouragement and enthusiasm gave me the confidence I needed to improve my design skills.”
This is one hell of a well-planned course. It's like learning how to fly a plane by actually sitting in the cockpit with the pilot – Erik is constantly designing/redesigning real-world examples right in front of you, explaining why X is good or bad, and how to go about making it even better.”
So much web design advice is too obvious, abstract, or shallow. Learn UI Design, on the other hand, is the opposite. Highly practical, concrete, substantial, and very well structured and paced. I'm beyond satisfied.”
Learn UI Design opens on Apr 21, 2021. If you want a reminder that day, sign up for my Design Newsletter – which also features original long-form design articles, and already has over 40,000 people on it.
Be the first to know when Learn UI Design is re-opened for new enrollments, and get (very occasional) high-value articles on color, typography, and other UX/UI topics.
Fonts have always been a complete mystery to me. But just from watching just the first two typography videos, I am actually capable of pairing fonts – with exquisite results! Learn UI Design's pragmatic approach to design has tought me infinitely more than what reading any design books ever did!”