I started playing guitar when I was eight years old. I got my first electric guitar that year as a birthday present. When I was 14 I received an eight-track digital recorder and a microphone, and started making recordings of my original compositions. I taught myself to play bass, drums, and piano as well as the basics of audio engineering to constantly and consistently improve the quality of my recordings.
Whenever I'd amass about ten (what I thought then) quality tracks, I'd burn them onto a CD and give them out at school. However, I soon realized that this wasn't a very cost-effective or optimally efficient way to distribute my music. I needed a website.
When I was 15 years old, I signed up for a free website and began teaching myself HTML and the basics of web design. I approached the subject with the same level of enthusiasm and passion previously reserved for music alone.
It wasn't long before my first website was live – and ugly. CSS was next on my agenda; and when I wanted a way to interact with visitors (through forms, surveys, etc.), I began learning PHP.
Even though I started with coding more than ten years ago, I know there is still so much to learn. That's why I order books from Amazon monthly. That's why I follow top developers on Twitter and subscribe to a dozen web-related subreddits to keep up-to-date on the latest trends and techniques. Front end development is a passion of mine now, and something I strive to get better at every day.
Have questions? Visit the contact page, connect with me using the social media links below, or e-mail me at contact[at]stephenwidom.com to discuss your next project or to set up a time to jam.
For a more detailed explanation of my individual skills, please click a link below:
My first time writing HTML, for something other than my personal projects, was when I joined the web development club in high school. I coded the website for the foreign language department. I've kept up-to-date with standards and best practices and write semantic, sensible, and reusable code. To date, I've coded more than 30 live websites.
When <center> and <font> tags were no longer the cool kids in school (not to mention flash), it was time to learn some CSS. I've since become a maestro of styling – and just like with HTML, I've kept up-to-date and in-the-know. I have a solid understanding of cross-browser compatibilities and write clean, concise code.
I love jQuery. I use it to validate forms and submit them asynchronously, create sweet fade-in and hover effects, and prevent spam attacks. I also make use of jQuery plugins for things like sliders, mobile nav menus, and lightboxes (although sometimes I like to roll my own).
I began with PHP when I wanted to a way to interact with people on my first personal website. I wanted people to comment and rate my original music, and realized HTML and CSS alone couldn't cut it. I still use PHP every day for too many tasks to list, and have recently begun to expand my knowledge by delving into object-oriented PHP programming.
The majority of websites I've developed in the past two years have been WordPress-based. I've hand-coded over a dozen custom themes, including e-commerce sites and blogs.
I've converted over three-dozen PSDs into HTML websites over the last two years – and after doing all of my rendering and mock-ups by hand for a long time, I've graduated to Photoshop. I'm still figuring out the subtleties, but have a firm grasp on all of the basic, and some of the advanced features.
It started with Git, but now I use the command line for the majority of tasks associated with creating and launching a website or application.