Learn the basics of HTML / CSS in 100 minutes!

HTML and CSS are the basic skills you need if you want to do any type of web design. HTML is the markup language that stores text like this in a way that your web browser can read and CSS provides the style instructions that makes text bold or italicized, shows it in different colors or formats headers like the one you see above.

The good news is that learning the basics of these languages isn’t much more difficult than the explanation I just gave you. After learning a handful of markup tags such as <h1> (header), <p> (paragraph) and <br> (line break), you can put any document into an HTML web page that a browser can display. Creating a style sheet with CSS that will format that page is just as easy. With both of these technologies, you can learn the most basic commands to get started and then pick up more as you grow your skills. It’s just a matter of time and commitment.

Learning HTML and CSS is so easy that Madison Kanna has distilled the essentials into this video offered through freeCodeCamp.org. In just over a hour and a half, she guides viewers through the creation of an order summary page that can be used in a real-life website. The video provides the most basic details of website design for absolute beginners and Madison Kanna provides clear and understandable instruction for those who might be just starting out with no previous experience.

There are many tools that will automatically create HTML and CSS for you; I’m using one right now. If you really want to work as a web designer, however, it’s important to know these very basic skills in order to have real control over what you produce and avoid dependency on whatever features or functionality a company decides to include in its design software. Knowing the essentials and being able to create basic pages with nothing more than a text editor is also part of being a expert in the field and part of its culture.

This video is also a good introduction to the free content offered by freeCodeCamp.org, a popular instructional site that offers courses in a variety of subjects from web design to quality assurance and relational database design. Many of their courses are even available like the one above, on YouTube without the need for to even sign up.