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30 Most Influential People In Web Design

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Here are the top 30 most influential people in web design. This list is in order starting from the most influential person at number 1, all the way down to 30. The order we have put the list in is through our eyes. If you would put someone else at number one, who would it be? Drop us a comment. Anyway, enjoy reading through the list! (Its taken a long time to perfect)

* * * 30 Most Influential People In Web Design * * *

Collis Ta’eed
Collis Ta’eed 30 Most Influential People In Web Design Collis’ Websites
Envato – http://www.envato.com
TutsPlus – http://tutsplus.com

About Collis Ta’eed
Collis Ta’eed is the founder / creator of the company Envato (formally Eden). Collis first came across Photoshop at university, and realized this is what he wanted to do. Since then he has built up the Envato network to one of the biggest creative communities online to date.

Envato has many sites within its network, including tutorial sites, design blogs, web galleries and creative marketplaces such as flashden and audiojungle.

Vitaly Friedman
Vitaly Friedman 30 Most Influential People In Web Design Vitaly’s Websites
Smashing Magazine – http://www.smashingmagazine.com

About Vitaly Friedman
Vitaly is one of the founders of the popular smashingmagazine.com. Smashing magazine is an extremely popular web design blog, which has over 130,000 RSS Subscribers and is hosted on 7 servers.

The Design compilations that Vitaly puts together on smashing magazine and simply amazing. Smashing Magazine is one of the most talked about blogs online to date. Well done Vitaly!

Matt Mickiewicz
Matt Mickiewicz 30 Most Influential People In Web Design Matt’s Websites
Sitepoint – http://www.sitepoint.com

About Matt Mickiewicz
Matt is the founder and creator of Sitepoint. Sitepoint is the largest website online for web designers and developers. It ranks under the top 1000 websites online to date.

Sitepoint has a very popular forum and marketplace, plus they also publish books and host design contests.

Nick La
Nick La 30 Most Influential People In Web Design Nick’s Websites
N.Design Studio – http://www.ndesign-studio.com
Best Web Gallery – http://bestwebgallery.com
Web Designer Wall – http://www.webdesignerwall.com
Icon Dock – http://icondock.com

About Nick La
Nick La is a freelancer specializing in illustration and web design. Nick is based in Toronto, Canada. His main focuses are designing stock icons, beautiful CSS websites and illustrations.

Nicks work has been featured all across the internet on various blogs and web galleries.

David Leggett
David Leggett 30 Most Influential People In Web Design David’s Websites
Tutorial9 – http://www.tutorial9.net
UxBooth – http://www.uxbooth.com
The Leggett – http://www.theleggett.com

About David Leggett
David designed his first website when he was only ten years old. Since then he has created an amazing web design blog called tutorial9, in which he teaches people about Photoshop and design.

UxBoot is another one of his websites that offers website reviews, and free web resources to all its readers.

Jacob Gube
Jacob Gube 30 Most Influential People In Web Design Jacob’s Websites
Six Revisions – http://sixrevisions.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/SixRevisions

About Jacob Gube
Jacob is the founder is Six Revisions, one of the most popular web design and development blogs on the internet. The content that is published on six revisions is simply amazing, and provides extremely useful information to web designers and developers worldwide.

Jakob Nielsen
Jakob Nielsen 30 Most Influential People In Web Design Jakob’s Websites

About Jakob Nielsen
Jakob has his own websites over at useit.com. Jakob has many different names, such as “The king of usability”, and “The smartest person on the web”.

Jeffrey Zeldman
Jeffrey Zeldman 30 Most Influential People In Web Design Jeffrey’s Websites
Happy Cog
Jeffrey Zeldman – http://www.zeldman.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/zeldman

About Jeffrey Zeldman
Jeffrey Zeldman is a writer / author, and designer. His personal blog zeldman.com has been around since 1995 (14 years!), and is one of the oldest published blogs on the internet.

Jeffrey Zeldman has been involves in many projects including the Web Standards Project, and A List Apart.

David Airey
David Airey 30 Most Influential People In Web Design David’s Websites
David Airey – http://www.davidairey.com
LogoDesignLove – http://www.logodesignlove.com

About David Airey

David is a graphic designer living in Northern Ireland. He specializes in logo design and brand identity. His blog has around 14,000 RSS Subscribers, and his portfolio is also hosted on davidairey.com.

Another one of Davids projects includes Logodesignlove.com, which also has over 13,000 RSS Subscribers. His work is featured in many web galleries and blogs.

Fabio Sasso
Fabio Sasso 30 Most Influential People In Web Design Fabio’s Websites
Abduzeedo – https://abduzeedo.com
Fabio Sasso – http://fabiosasso.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/abduzeedo

About Fabio Sasso

Fabio has his own personal website in which he features many of his personal designs. Abduzeedo is Fabio’s design blog in which he has some amazing content.

Fabio also owns his own web design company called Zee.

Veerle Pieters
Veerle Pieters Veerle’s Websites
Veerle’s Blog – http://veerle.duoh.com
Duoh! – http://www.duoh.com

About Veerle Pieters
Veerle began her career in 1992, when she became a freelance designer under the name of Duoh! She founded the name duoh.com in 2000.

Veerle’s design blog has been around for many years. Her design work is very inspirational, and every piece is 10/10 for quality.

Jacob Cass
Jacob Cass Jacob’s Websites
Just Creative Design – http://justcreativedesign.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/justcreative

About Jacob Cass
Jacob has his blog and portfolio at the same domain name. He is the founder of Just Creative Design, and is currently 21 years old.

Jacob is a very talented individual in the design niche. You just have to look at his portfolio to see it. He does an array of different design work that includes web design, logo design, print and much more.

Adelle Charles
Adelle Charles Adelle’s Websites
Fuel Your Creativity – this website is no longer online
Fuel Brand Group – http://fuelbrandgroup.com
Adelle Charles – http://adellecharles.com

About Adelle Charles
Adelle is the creative director for the Fuel Brand Group. She is responsible for all the creative design around all the fuel brand sites. She is also an Art Director and a designer for a TV Station.

She also has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design from Rochester Institute of Technology.

Adii Rockstar
Adii Rockstar Adii’s Websites
Adii – http://adii.co.za
WooThemes – http://www.woothemes.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/adii

About Adii Rockstar
Adii Rockstar formally knows as Adriaan Pienaa is a successful internet entrepreneur. Adii has his own personal blog, and is the founder of woothemes, and Radiiate Web Solutions.

Nick Finck
Nick Finck Nick’s Websites
Nick Finck – http://nickfinck.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/nickf
Flickr – https://www.flickr.com/photos/digitalweb/

About Nick Finck
Nick Finck is a speaker and community cultivator. He has created web experiences for fortune 50 and 500 companies. These companies include Adobe, IBM, HP, Microsoft and many others.

Dennis Hwang
Dennis Hwang Featured In
Google Blog – http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2004/06/oodles-of-doodles.html
Guardian Online – http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2008/sep/05/google.doodle

About Dennis Hwang
Dennis is the official Google Doodlist. He has created over 150 doodles for Google. His name is not well known, but his work has been seen by billions of people on the Google homepage. He creates new doodles for Google when there are events happening, such as Easter, Googles Birthday, Halloween, Start of summer, etc.

Derek Herman
Derek Herman Derek’s Websites
Valen Designs – http://valendesigns.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/valendesigns

About Derek Herman
Derek is the founder of Valen Designs. Valen specializes in Web Design, Search Engine Optimization, Branding and Application Development. Derek has worked on many websites, including sites within the Envato network.

Mike Kus
Mike Kus Mike’s Websites
The Things We Make

About Mike Kus
Mike is the senior designer for Carsonified. He joined in May 2008, and has been in design for many years before. Mike is a very creative designer, and he works wonders for Carsonified.

He also has a personal site over at thethingswemake.co.uk, which includes his Flickr photo stream, and his portfolio.

Bill Beachy
Bill Beachy Bill’s Websites
Go Media – http://v5.gomedia.us/about/bill.php
Twitter – http://twitter.com/william_beachy

About Bill Beachy
Bill is the president of Go Media. It took several years before he could start to hire other people to work for his company, but now it has a vast number of employees.

Go Media was originally called Graphic Odysseys, until it merged with Next Level Multimedia in 2003.

Rob Palmer
Rob Palmer Rob’s Websites
Branded07 – http://www.branded07.com

About Rob Palmer
Rob is 25 years old and a graphic designer based in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. He is skilled in almost every Adobe package, and knows many programming languages.

He uses Branded07 to post tutorials, write about his personal life and host his portfolio.

Cameron Moll
Cameron Moll Cameron’s Websites
Cameron Moll – http://cameronmoll.com
Authentic Jobs – http://authenticjobs.com

About Cameron Moll
Cameron Moll is an inspirational web designer. His code is clean, and he is one of the most balanced designers. Many companies have recognizes Cameron’s work.

Cameron has a personal site in which he hosts a shop, his blog and his design portfolio. He also has a job board named “Authentic Jobs”.

Jason Santa Maria
Jason Santa Maria Jason’s Websites
Jason Santa Maria – http://jasonsantamaria.com
An Event Apart – http://aneventapart.com/speakers/jasonsantamaria/
Twitter – http://twitter.com/jasonsantamaria

About Jason Santa Maria
Jason is a graphic designer that currently lives in Brooklyn. On his personal site he hosts his portfolio and also writes about Technology, Business and the Web.

Paul Boag
Paul Boag Paul’s Websites
BoagWorld – http://boagworld.com

About Paul Boag
Paul hosts the podcast BoagWorld, along with Marcus Lillington. Paul and Marcus had already worked together for years, creating the web design company HeadScape.

BoagWorld is the longest running, and most popular web design podcast on the internet.

Andrew Maier
Andrew Maier Andrew’s Websites
Designer Andrew – http://www.designerandrew.com
UxBooth – http://www.uxbooth.com/author/andrewmaier/
Twitter – http://twitter.com/andrewmaier

About Andrew Maier
Andrew is a web / graphic design freelancer. He is currently living in Atlanta, GA. He writes frequent articles for uxbooth.com. His interests are in web standards, usability, and human-computer interaction.

Jeff Croft
Jeff Croft Jeff’s Websites
Jeff Croft – http://jeffcroft.com
BlueFlavor – http://blueflavor.com

About Jeff Croft
Jeff has been working online for a good 12 years. He works for a design company called blueflavor, but he also does his own bit of freelancing on the side, through his personal website jeffcroft.com.

Jeff hosts all his favorite links, photos and his portfolio and blog on his personal website.

Dave Shea
Dave Shea Dave’s Websites
Bright Creative – http://www.brightcreative.com
Zen Garden – http://www.csszengarden.com
MezzoBlue – http://mezzoblue.com

About Dave Shea
Dave owns a one man design studio, named Bright Creative. He has a very uplifting portfolio and loves icon design.

He has many projects including Zen Garden, and his own personal web blog over at mezzoblue.com.

Dan Cederholm
Dan Cederholm Dan’s Websites
SimpleBits – http://simplebits.com
IconShoppe – http://www.iconshoppe.com
Hand Crafted CSS – http://handcraftedcss.com
Own Someone A Drink?

About Dan Cederholm
Dan is the founder of simplebits, a web design studio. He also has many other projects he has worked on, such as iconshoppe and foamee. Dan has wrote his own book alongside Ethan Marcotte, called “HandCrafted CSS”.

Dan Richard
Dan Richard Dan’s Websites
Pixel2Life – http://www.pixel2life.com
Dan Richard – http://www.danrichard.com

About Dan Richard
Dan is the founder of pixel2life.com, the biggest tutorial index on the planet. Pixel2life has tutorials in over 80 different categories! It allows people to submit tutorials to its large and ever growing index.

Dan also owns his own personal blog over at danrichard.com in which he blogs about tutorials, design work and much more.

Daniel Mall
Daniel Mall Daniel’s Websites
Daniel Mall – http://danmall.me

About Daniel Mall
Dan is a interactive designer, living in Philadelphia. He specializes in Flash, XHTML, CSS and Typography.

Daniel also works for Happy Cog Studios. He created beautiful websites, and publishes his best ideas to a worldwide community.

Andy Clarke
Andy Clarke Andy’s Websites
Stuff And Nonsense – http://www.stuffandnonsense.co.uk
For A Beautiful Web – http://www.forabeautifulweb.com

About Andy Clarke
Andy has been working online for around 10 years. He moved to Wales to escape busy London. He has his own web design business called stuff and nonsense.

Andy also has a blog that teaches people web development, and hosts training workshops. You can catch this over at forabeautifulweb.com.
Iggy is an entrepreneur, blogger, and designer who loves experimenting with new web design techniques, collating creative website designs, and writing about the latest design fonts, themes, plugins, inspiration, and more. You can follow him on Twitter

159 thoughts on “30 Most Influential People In Web Design”

  1. Wow! Such an awesome list indeed.
    I have been following so many websites on this lists but did not know about their owners and contributors. You have gathered useful information and made it a great web design resource for me.

  2. That is quite a list attractive and influential people. I like it and definitely these are the guys, who are inspiration for many others.

  3. I seriously love your site.. Excellent colors & theme.

    Did you build this site yourself? Please reply back as I’m looking to create my own blog and would love to know where you got this from or exactly what the theme is named. Thanks!

    • Hi Jeanett,

      The current theme is Sahifa from Themeforest: http://themeforest.net/item/sahifa-responsive-wordpress-newsmagazineblog/2819356?ref=webdesigndev

  4. Good list but seems like the author needs to work outside of their bubble.

    90% of the people I can consider talented web designers aren’t even on this list. Most of whom may not speak English and design for multi-lingual / cross-culture websites on languages much much more complex than “English” such as Chinese, Arabic…try and design for foreign markets then I consider you both “influential” and “global”

    So as someone else mentioned Asia and Africa, there is way more talent out there than this (not to mention more than 2 women who can design). This mis-leading title should read “30 Most Influential People In Web Design according to Author / WebdesignerDev Team”.

  5. So many amazing peeps in this industry.
    As a knowledge hungry designer it’s nice to see other peoples lists like this.

    Cheers, for the post.

  6. I guess this whole list of ‘Most Influential’ is subjective. I can think of several people who have had a far greater impact on web design than any of these people. Nick Di Silva, Lincoln Johnson, Bradley Grosh, Eric Jordan, Josh Davis and on and on. Nick created Flash TV which allows budding animators, directors, musicians to showcase work .

    Lincoln helped pioneer streaming media and created the most award winning website on the internet (Vodafone Journey) v1, and although creating film trailers for some of Hollywood’s biggest films (most recently Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol) he still puts together amazing sites and teaches others.

    Bradley innovated video and video edited sites using a variety of vid/ed software and Flash. Josh used Chaos Theory mathematics in several Flash based campaigns for micro sites created for Motorola and BMW and has gone on to become a professor in NY and finally Eric Jordan pioneered Flash and was featured in Masters of Flash…Not to mention Yumi Sakaki from London and a host of other women who impress the industry every day.

    Come on…open your windows a bit. There are quite a few who for what I imagine are purely personal reasons who have been omitted from your list.

  7. Apparently, I’m no longer influential. I wonder if that’s good or bad! This list is very mixed, but with the exception of Zeldman, you’ve left out some of old skoolers who are still kicking it – Eric Meyer being the most obvious example.

  8. I agree that Mr. Collis Ta’eed is the top of the most influence people in Web Design. In fact, Collis undoubtedly has the keen eye for style and has extremely paved the means for a few of the most effective style on the online.

  9. awww.. you should have mentioned Chris Coyier from http://css-tricks.com/ too.. But nevertheless, nice list.

  10. I have had the privilege of watching some of these guys develop over the years. They are very influential and proactive thinkers. Thanks for sharing!

  11. Good list. Too bad you didn’t list the 31 most influential people in web design. I’m sure I would have been #31 😉 Maybe next year…

  12. ~ If this is the great move, then the great move ahead will come to me.. ~

    I wish someday i can be like them.. Damn!! They’re so good.. 😀

  13. Thank you so much for this great list. I am so inspired by many of these creative individuals. What about the founders of Lynda.com? That is an amazing web site that is quite successful on so many levels.

  14. its my dream …after 3 year..i will be there..don’t worry..write down my name..no one in this list from India..i am the first designer coming soon…wait……………..

    chetan thakur

    • You don’t have to be an AAAwsome Web Designer to be influential in the Web Design World, don’t you think?

      For me personal, Fabio gives me tons of Inspiration with his Abduzeedoo. Cheers for that!

    • Dude that’s not very nice – Someone has to take the time to write the tutorials and collate the inspirations to get all you AAAwesome designers to design exactly alike…

    • Men, you can view it on webkit browsers like google chrome and safari, He uses pure css for his animation and since mozilla hasn’t supported it yet, of course it will be mess if you view it in mozilla firefox and IE, hehe cheers men! 😀

  15. fantastic list! thanks a lot for the level of detail. I’m already start to follow them!

  16. Where is Eric Meyer??? Clearly the one who made this list doesn’t have any experience in web design. This list is BULL

  17. Vitaly Friedman is my role model and I like all his designs and with his inspiration I has created a site where in I am going to post it in a contest running by grafikguru.com

  18. Uh…. where’s CSS-Tricks.com??

    I know it’s lame to post a “you missed one” comment on a blog, but Chris Coyier’s website is clearly a HUGE juggernaut in the online web design community and I think it should be noted along with all these cool people too.

    Just sayin..

    • Agreed Ryan. I know it’s a little belated, and I only just saw this list for the first time, but Chris Coyier has definitely helped push things forward.

      Most Influential posts are really myopic. Everyone thinks someone else is more influential, the key is to broaden the scope of influential.

  19. Great post. I am familiar with the majority of these designers and a big fan of them as well. Jeffrey Zeldman, Veerle Pieters, and Adelle Charles are some of my favorites to name a few.

  20. Really great artists!

    Its only missing Roger, author of jsRoger framework.

    It is W3C standard, WEB 2.0, SEO ready, ultra dinamic, code 90% by the developer.


  21. Amazing list. It’s everyone’s dream to be among that company of people who have influenced web and graphic designing and made it what it is today.

  22. I think some of the comments on this list are totally absurd.

    This is the designers opinion as they stated at the top of the list. If you think they are wrong, make your own damne list! But don’t insult the people on the list. It is not called for. – @Jon @Andrew L – @Ceiling Cat

  23. What’s the point of making a list when they’re a bunch of unknown sub par web designers that are your friends?
    Seriously, I don’t recognize most of the people on there? The guy on top of the list is some bald mofo who does photoshop tutorials??

  24. Sorry but this is a terrible list. Are we going by how many hits their blog gets or by the quality of the design? Anyone who owns a keyword rich URL can get hits to their site, but that doesn’t make them a good designer, and posting a bunch of tutorials on your site doesn’t make you all that influential either.

    Sure, there’s a degree of subjectivity that goes into this, but the quality of some of the sites on this list are truly horrible in terms of design and typography. I’m not claiming to be the best, but it makes me a little sad that people can’t tell good from bad anymore.

  25. I don’t know what everyone is talking about. I recognize all these names. I’m a designer by trade so maybe that’s why…

    As far as diversity goes (women, ethnic groups), it seems that the objective of the list was to display influential people, not be politically correct…

    I think it’s a great list! Nicely done.

  26. Nice list. I do agree that Eric Meyer really has a place on this list, and I’d like to add that I’m surprised to not see Chris Spooner here. But, as pointed out several times, it’s all just opinion.

  27. I must give ALL (literally) of the credit to my staff. I merely facilitate the opportunity for great things to happen – they do all the work. It should just say: “Go Media” up there.

    I am humbled and honored!

    Mad Props to the Go Media Staff!

    Wilson, Adam, Kim, Jeff, Heather, Thomas, Oliver, Comella, Law, Romsey, Liz, Tim and Katy!

    • That’s major man. Congratulations!

      Very nice gesture shouting out your staff. Classy man.
      I’m sure they appreciate it.

      You get major respect from me.

  28. Honored to have my business partner Bill Beachy included in this list. Although, the list definitely leaves out who some of us find much more influential I think it mostly focuses on people who run a successful design blog. Most of these people are all within the same “niche” so to speak, that’s probably why you’re not seeing John Resign, the creator Jquery, or the people behind wordpress, Firefox, Google, yada yada. Just take the list for what it’s worth and be encouraged to write YOUR top 30 on your blog and include those left out.

  29. Wow, that’s a ballsy list you guys have compiled there. Some are waaay more influential than others, but they still fall to the bottom of the list. Good job though!

  30. I understand that it’s the WebDesignDev’s opinion..well I quite like it. A lot of familiar people and just a great list with webdesign people!




  32. Great list, but i do miss people like Rob Ford (FWA) and Carole Guevin (netdiver). And Lee Brimelow, too.

    Oh dear, this list could go on and on. So i won’t complain. Good job!

  33. I find this list extremely disappointing, and a little terrifying if this is a valid insight into the state of the industry.

    If these are the most influential people in web design I think our industry will have a very short future.

    I only recognise Zeldman and Cederholm as genuinely talented here.

  34. One name is missing for sure – Andy Budd (Director at Clearleft, founder of UX London, founder of dConstruct, founder of SkillSwap, author of CSS Mastery book)

  35. Looks like you are big-upping your friends. This list is missing a lot of important people, and overplaying the importance of web entrepreneurs- are they really influential, or just successful?

    How about Rob Ford of the FWA, or the guys at 2Advanced Studios? WordPress even? The Designers Republic? FL2?

    • I agree. A few more influential designers would be good too (as opposed to people influencing design by other means). How about these:
      Poke (www.pokelondon.com)
      We Fail (http://www.wefail.com/)
      De-Construct (http://www.de-construct.com/)
      Hi-Res (http://hi-res.net/)
      Yugo Nakamura (http://yugop.com/)
      Maeda (http://www.maedastudio.com/)

      There are also a bunch of tech people who have influenced web design a lot:
      John Resig, J-Query
      Shaun Inmann / Mike Davidson – Sifr
      Thomas Fuchs – Scriptaculous
      Maria Lubenova and Rostislav Hristov – SwfAddress

      They all influence me.

  36. Wow, thanks for the recognition and placement in this list. I know this is only an opinion based thing, but it is great to be featured here among so many talented chaps/chapettes. So big thanks for that, made my day. 🙂

  37. It’s unfortunate that only two women made the list. I’m sure it wasn’t intentional, but it is disheartening.

  38. ZOMG David Leggett for the win. His place above Zeldman on this list is right on. In fact, he should get two spots at least.

  39. Thanks for your list of inspiration. I appreciate the time you put into this list.

    I have not heard of a few of them, but I’ll be sure to look into their stuff.

    Myself, I have different inspirations, as do probably everyone in web design, and in life. There is no need for the abrasive discussion going on above.

    My thanks again to the author and every named person on this list and every unnamed person that should have been (if I were to write my own version of this article).

  40. Veerle Pieters has been inspriring me all the way ~ she is a genius and I’ve read her blog post updates for years!

    Lots of influental talented designers on internet to mention as 30 is just short list. But I shall put really positive value for these inspirational people.

  41. I’m going to sidestep the flame war going on up there and just say thanks for putting this list together, Andy. I have my own list of inspirational web designers as well (a few of whom are on this list), but getting to see your list has a lot of value of it’s own. I think a lot of commenter are missing the point that this is a blog article, not a be-all and end-all list of who’s who.

  42. @Dan, how is Cheryl Gledhil’s comment sexist? I’m sure you meant the list, not her comment since you agree there are, “loads of extremely talented and influential women in the design world.”

  43. Lists like this are simply conversation fodder and aren’t meant to be taken seriously, right?

    For those people who think there’s been some slight to the same names that have appeared on every single other list ever crafted since 2001, let’s at least appreciate maybe there is some new blood to at least consider. Maybe New Girl X isn’t as “reputable” as SuperStarHouseholdName Y, but hell, don’t we already all know what book SuperStarHouseholdName already published and already visit that blog?

    Look at this way, for any baseball-following Americans: if every year ESPN came out with the ten best baseball players, you’d always, always have Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron Mickey Mantle, Cy Young, Willie Mays, leaving you maybe a player who suited up since 1970. That list would get pretty old and tired after a few reads, right? Frankly I already know what most of these guys have done, and I’m at least more curious to see names I didn’t recognize to see if they’re up to snuff.

    I guess the problem is the rather pretentious “Most Influential” title in the post, since that’s a pretty tall order to measure.

  44. Really? Only a couple women? And the first one is past the top ten? Really now.

    So, did dudes compile this list?



  45. I must admit there are only a few names on this list that I know, and not many others that I believe should be on this list; but your opinions (the commenter’s that is) is entirely yours and I can’t (and won’t) flame you for it.

    I do however have the issue of modifying and deleting comments, I accept innapropriate comments needing to be removed but to modify and the REMOVE David’s comment(s) was, in my opinion, a bad move.

    Actions like this are making it a fast-track to loosing a regular reader, and by extension a regular visitor and forum participant.

  46. Chris: good point. I agree with you. I guess I got dragged into a rather violent state of mind because of the, as you say, <>.
    It shouldn’t be taken so serious. Thanks for pointing that out.

  47. Nice list of popular faces, some really influentials and a few who have managed to get loads of traffic. I’d say this is not the most calculated of lists though, nor have the people really been assessed very well in terms of their “Web Design” influence.

    Example, how can Zeldman possibly be so far down this list? You obviously haven’t assessed relative influence properly. Unless the list is not in order which you said it is.

    Of course yes, you are entitled to your opinion, but it seems to not be the most informed opinion. Eg,David Airey though I respect his contribution to the Logo Design blogging world is not particularly a huge web design influence at all.

    I suspect this list was created to mean the most influential to newbie web designers? The list contains many who are relatively new to the web design scene and are probably more influential as bloggers. Maybe the most influential web design bloggers of 2008?

    Having said all of that, the list is a good one, influential these people definitely are in some way or another, but maybe not so apt for the intended purpose.

  48. Ok, Leggett: you’re an idiot. First you go ahead and agree with me and say that yes, you have nothing to do on this list, which you don’t, and then your comment is deleted.
    This guy hasn’t written a tutorial since January! It’s one thing to be like Sean Hodge or Fabio, people that don’t have time to write tutorials every week (although Fabio has been writing a lot more than he used to, lately) because you have 12 websites to run or because your website requires your full attention.

    Tim Smith: you’re an even bigger idiot. Leggett didn’t take the bashing well. He bent on his knees and said “yes, I do suck” with the stupid smile I always imagined him to have whenever he doesn’t like something but he knows it’s true.

    Daniel St. Jules: I’m not speaking on behalf of every designer out there. It was merely my personal opinion and I never claimed to be a spokesman for anyone but myself. Are you that offended by my comment that you feel the need to invent a scenario where I do take it upon myself to speak for an entire community?

    I’m sick and tired of posts like this: 4500 Best Stuff Ever or whatnot and when you read it you find it’s only a disappointment. What are we, Google? Have humans started to think like web spiders and robots? Give me a good How to do this in this software tutorial any day of the week. Twice on Sunday, please.

  49. “I think there are a few other people that deserved a mention, like, as said before: Chris Coyier and Elliot Jay Stocks as well as Chris Spooner.”


  50. Great list, hopefully someday my name will be that on list. Do you have a list of daydreamers or frustrated web designer. Thanks for the list

  51. that’s one impressive list, but yeah, I would order this list a much more different and also people, who comment got the point.. Eric Meyer is really one of the celebrities in web design, such person and several others, cannot be excluded from list, if you want to be it complete..:)

    I enjoy it anyway, unique approach to article 🙂

  52. This list is ridiculous!
    How could you ever forget Eric Meyer, Mark Boultan and Douglas Bowman? Moreover, Andy Clarke, Dave Shea, Cameron Moll, Dan Cederholm and Jeff Croft deserve top ten.

  53. Great list but i think Chris Coyier should have been there too 🙂 I literally learned everything from his site! 🙂

  54. For the CSS reset alone, Eric Meyer should be somewhere on this list.

    I guess that’s the problem with blogging top lists, one person tries to justify his/her viewpoint regardless of self imposed bias … and that viewpoint somehow becomes “credible” to hundreds of site visitors just because of the wording in the post tile.

    There is no win or lose here, only food for thought.

    • But I strongly agree with the author on Collis as the number 1. Envato will have a web design monopoly if they keep growing at their current pace.

  55. Dan,

    care to reread your comment?

    Pointing out that women are massively under represented in this list is sexist? Perhaps you should ponder that a little.

    +1 for Cheryl’s comment (disclosure, she’s a friend, but I spotted this comment quite by chance).

  56. I believe the title for the post is a little irrelevant. (web design?O_o)

    Despite everyone listed in here are extremely respected people, not all of them are really related with web design.

    But yes, great list for keeping an eye on the entrepreneurs.

  57. Great article!

    @ Cheryl Gledhill: There are obviously loads of extremely talented and influential women in the design world. Why leave a blatantly sexist comment?

    Sorry but these kinds of derailing comments kind of rub me wrong.

  58. First, I think an honorable mention should go out to Lynda Weinman of Lynda.com. I know I wasn’t the only one back in ’95-’96 reading her “Designing Web Graphics” book, figuring out what the difference between a JPG and a GIF was, and using the hex color chart as a reference.

    Even though times have changed and she’s moved on to tutorials/events, she was still one of the early “big” names in the industry.

    Second, several of the early big names in Web Design & Dev are missing from this list. Heck, you mention Dave Shea but not Molly Holzschlag? She co-authored Zen of CSS Design with Dave Shea! (I agree with Cheryl Gledhill – only 2 women on the list?)

    And, what about Jared Spool? (Hello! uie.com!) Also, no Apple/OSX designers? Once OSX hit, every site had the jelly buttons/icons & gradients on their site – the look of Web 2.0.

    Third, what was the criteria for creating this list?

  59. Oh this writeup is just fantastic! I already look at a couple of these designers for inspiration and such and now I have more.

    Thanks for this great article.

  60. Lots of great talent on this list. Some names more familiar than others, maybe not as much for their talents in design as their talents in being remarkable. nice post.

  61. @kidino: Jeffrey Zeldman, Jason Santa Maria, all Daniel Mall on this list, are part of the group behind A List Apart. Amongst many other talents: http://www.alistapart.com/about/

  62. This list is deep with talent, but I need to throw another hat in the ring…

    digital reaction | newburyport, ma

  63. Great list?! LOL
    I can’t understand why people like Shaun Inman, Tim van Damme or Elliot Jay Stocks aren’t in this list.

  64. Don’t want the world of webdesigners to become limited to a select few people but this is kind of cool.

    Missing ex-Google employee Douglas Bowman (now Creative Director at Twitter) and I’m sure a bunch of others to but it’s a start.

  65. Why stop at insinuating gender bias? Let’s throw the race card in there too, make things really interesting.

    Or maybe it’s just a list of talented *people*.

    Just sayin’.

  66. agree with @Alex Rogahn Eliott & Chris Spooner should be in the list, and yes the list is based on writer personal opinion, i think it will be better to create a polling and list based on the result

  67. There were two fascinating people on here that I hadn’t heard of before — Dennis Hwang and Derek Herman.

    I didn’t realize that one man was responsible for all the Google banners. Also, after looking at Derek’s site, it makes sense that he designs for Envato. Thanks!

  68. I think there are a few other people that deserved a mention, like, as said before: Chris Coyier and Elliot Jay Stocks as well as Chris Spooner. As for all this “Why is David Leggett on here?” malarky, because people look up to him and he is a good designer. Tbh you can’t really put designers in places I think, can;t give a valid reason just my opinion 🙂

    Now where is my name? Perhaps there’s been some misunderstanding as I cannot see it anywhere… xD

  69. This list is somewhat absurd when your rank them 01 to 30. Why not make it in an alphabetical order?

    Your #1 and #2 are absolute heavyweights, but they surely aren’t as influential as Zeldman or Nielsen.
    Zeldman’s “Designing with Web standards” came out in 2001. By that time, 99% of us were still doing sites in tables and the Flash overkill was yet to come.

    Also criminally overlooked to me: 456bereastreet.com (the lab and blog archive is a must read!), Eric Meyer (!!!), John Gallant / Position is Everything, D. Bowman / Stopdesign, Shaun Inman / Mint / sIFR, Andy Budd, Jonathan Hicks, Stu Nicholls (CSS Play is an incredible resource) …

  70. Thank you for including me in your list. Not sure I should be on it, but definitely appreciate the nod regardless. I guess years of not sleeping landed me on a list with some true heavy weights.

    Congrats to all those who got a little more recognition for all their hard work. Maybe next time we could do this as a poll to see who everyone else thinks deserves the credit.


  71. Thanks everyone for all your comments!

    This did take hours to research and write, and of course we couldn’t include everyone. Sorry if we missed out people, but the internet is soo big!

    My favorites are Dan Cederholm and Adii Rockstar. Could spend hours on their websites!

  72. Wow appreciate the inclusion on this influential list! I’m quite humbled to be surrounded by all these great people!

  73. I agree, this list seems more like the writers personal favorites, than actual influential people in the industry.

    Im not saying these people aren’t talented or influential, but I think there are plenty of others who have done more for the community and industry than some of the people listed here.

    That said, props to the writer for taking the time to create such a list of TALANTED web designers.

  74. I am in love with David Leggett. Much like Governor Mark Sanford claims that Argentinean woman is his “soul mate”, David Leggett is mine. I am head over heels for him. My days will always be brightened by his beautiful face and I look very forward coming to know him better as I wake up near him each day.


    Although you’re entitled to your own opinion, it’s quite arrogant of yourself to think that you speak on behalf of all designers when claiming that Leggett is merely a fluke. Perhaps it’s simply that you can’t comprehend the reason for his own success, or you’d rather deny it for whatever reason. Either way, no one elected you as spokesman, and I certainly disagree with your opinion. (and I’m not even a tutorial9 lover)

  76. Everyone in this list is awesome and an inspiration to all designers of every possible flavor….except for David Leggett. And certainly not in the 5th position. That guy is like the Paris Hilton of designers. No one knows WHY he’s famous, it’s not like he’s an uber-talent like Nick La for example, which, by the way deserved a good first place, nor did he ever reach such useful heights as the likes of Fabio Sasso, which I believe deserved second place.
    I’m disappointed not to see the likes of Elliot Jay Stocks or Eric Meyer or Chris Coyier making the list.

    Waiting for all the tutorial9 lovers to start bashing…


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