I’m sure most of you are familiar with the popular design blog Webdesigner Depot. In much less than a year WDD has become one of the leading blogs in the niche. I recently had a chance to interview the man behind WDD, Walter Apai.
How long have you been designing and how did you get started?
As a kid, I used to draw cartoons for fun. In 1999, I started designing CD covers for my music compilation CD’s. Almost by accident, I discovered that I have a talent and real passion for design. I’ve always been attracted to art, in all its shapes and forms. Web design was the natural direction for me.
Are you currently doing freelance work?
I wish, but unfortunately, not at the moment. I usually work with other designers designing sites for my own purposes, but I don’t do client work at this time mainly due to time restrictions. I do want to get back to it at some point, but my schedule is pretty full right now.
What was your motivation to start Webdesigner Depot?
A true passion to pour my creativity into something that can be useful to others. I also realized that indirectly the blog can serve both me and others as a means of self expression. So WDD became a shell to pour a lot of ideas and creativity into.
What have been some of the keys to success in taking WDD from nothing to one of the leading design blogs in a very short time?
The blog thrives on great content. I browse through many blogs as well as all types of offline material and try to come up with some really useful and cool stuff.
Although, I try to empower the readers with information, I also like to show them design in all shapes and forms. I want my audience to think outside the box and I try to show them examples of design in the most unexpected places.
I’m also what you would call a type A personality, so I tend to go all out for my projects and I certainly do that for WDD too. I basically give it my all and I think that the audience appreciates the energy and effort that go into this, which seems to make them gravitate towards the blog.
What are some of the challenges that you face in running a multi-author blog and dealing with a lot of different writers?
It’s important for me to be very focused on the goals that I’m trying to achieve. I think that you need to be a true leader, be organized and simply know how to work with multiple people while sorting through all of this effectively.
I get involved with every article and make changes to every aspect from wording to images as well as formatting. I constantly revise every draft until it’s just right. I’m a perfectionist at heart and enjoy putting all the pieces together in order to craft something truly special.
With WDD’s quick growth, where do you see it heading in the next year?
WDD is my first blog ever, so although I’ve brought with me many different qualities from my experience in other professions, this is still very much a learning experience for me. I read all emails and comments people leave on the blog very carefully, but ultimately I trust myself as to what’s best for the blog and the majority of people reading it. The blog is an evolving entity and I constantly tweak things based on feedback and my own instincts.
Can you tell us something interesting that most readers would not know about you?
So many! Well, my Mother tongue is Spanish, I used to host a pop music show on the radio and I’m a true Mac addict.