Speaker Spotlight: Brian Bookwalter

Brian BookwalterA long time supporter of WordPress Kansas City, Brian will be joining us to talk about bit about page builders. We know you’ve got questions, so we learned a little more about him below!

Q: How did you get started in your current field?
A: I worked as a print graphic designer as my first job in Manhattan, Kansas for an educational publishing company. Those seven years went very quickly and then I attended Graduate School at Kansas State. There, I started digging into code a little to learn more about the web. I set up my first WordPress site in 2005 (or so) and fell in love with it. Since then, I’ve been designing sites, some web-development, and using and reviewing premium products related to WordPress.

Q: Describe your ‘ah ha’ moment about WordPress?
A: My ah ha moment would have to be the first time I changed my theme but kept the database intact. After doing that, I just had a little resorting with the menu and post types order and the entire site was changed in a few hours.

At that time, “static” websites were all I knew, where your content was hard coded into each page… and changing a website design required starting over. WordPress changed the game.

Q: If you could go back to when you were getting started and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?
A: Don’t be too overwhelmed by the immense selection of plug-ins and themes available, both paid and free. Start simple with the basics instead of jumping into really complex backend UI products. Most websites are designed to do two things: get data and display data. Knowing what problem you are solving with a website will help you design everything around that premise. And of course, making it look good is easier than ever with really great theme options. I could keep going and going about the topic of “I wish I knew then what I know now”!

Q: Describe your talk in three sentences or less.
A: We will review, compare, and contrast several different page builders and compare them with popular theme builders to help all attendees decide for themselves which option best suits their design needs.

Q: Who should attend your talk (beginner developer, intermediate content provider, advanced designer, etc)?
A: Intermediate designer/ developers looking for ways to improve their front-end content development workflow.

This post is part of a multi-day series featuring speakers from WordCamp Kansas City 2015. Subscribe to have them delivered to your mailbox, or feel free to check back every day!