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Build UX is 5 years old

Andy Bell posted that his company is 5 today and that reminded me that Build UX, my YouTube channel and now consulting company, is also 5 years old.

I rarely take time to reflect on my past work, so this milestone snuck up on me.

How it started

5 years ago, I was mentoring a couple people who wanted to get into frontend development. I strongly believe in applied learning, so I found interesting designs on Dribbble, recreated them in an emerging design tool called Figma (heard of it?) that I started using in 2017, and coached them how to build a responsive website with professional HTML and CSS.

The people I was mentoring took to the process and produced really high quality projects while quickly learning important fundamentals of frontend development. After wrapping up this round of mentoring, I thought it'd be valuable to share this approach more widely with my dual design and development background.

I started making videos on Build UX to demonstrate my process of turning visual designs into resilient websites with semantic HTML, scalable CSS, and accessibility. That new design tool, Figma, was starting to gain adoption, so I began making tutorials on creating "responsive" components and breaking designs into hierarchical components with Atomic design.

How it went

When you create content, you demonstrate your approach, thinking, and experience.

This is very effective for learners, but creating free educational content has also lead to nearly every career opportunity I've had in the last 5 years. This includes conference talks and workshops, articles for other publications, a LinkedIn Learning course, job offers, and consulting and coaching clients.

Similar to Andy, I was fully booked through the pandemic with long-term clients, and continue to get organic inquiries without ever searching for clients.

Where it's going

After transitioning into consulting full-time in 2020, I haven't created videos consistently. But this year I've roughly settled into a rhythm of a monthly video and companion blog post that I'd like to continue. I've been creating more focused videos to solve specific accessible design and development problems, and I also want to teach my latest approaches to TDD, JavaScript, and accessibility testing.

I love the freedom and impact I have as an independent consultant with long-term clients. I can act as an embedded team member, directly coach, solve problems, and contribute work, and have the flexibility to dig deep into research projects or create larger educational content. If you're interested in working together on accessible design and development, reach out:

There's one more destination on my horizon that I'd like to explore in the next 5 years: starting a product business. I'm not ready to share details yet, but over the past 2 years I've been increasingly investing time in building something I'm confident will provide a ton of value to designers and developers alike.

Thank you for watching my videos, reading my posts, hiring me to solve meaningful problems, and supporting me over these past 5 years. I'm excited to keep Build UX going strong.