One of the toughest parts of PSD to HTML conversion is to know the place where you need to start coding. It might seem quite obvious and simplistic, but it really matters to know the starting point. Only then can you expect to build solid coding foundations and flawless layout for the website. Your code should exactly resemble the feel of the given Photoshop Design (PSD) file.
Apart from expertise over HTML (and CSS), you should also have basic knowledge of some graphic techniques like optimizing and slicing.
Following are some steps you can consider for PSD to HTML conversion:
1. Recognizing the Problem areas: At first glance your graphics might look straightforward. But, you need to analyze is closely and find out all possible elements. Make a note of all areas with concern that may come out once you start coding. Knowing impending problems beforehand can be a great help.
2. Break the layout: You have already identified all potential issues. Now before you start codin, break the layout into many manageable chunks. You need to do it irrespective of the nature of layout – (i.e)fixed or fluid width. Fixed layout is easier to handle. While breaking the layout down, make note of some important things. What does the graphic designer want – shadow or gradient effect? Is there any rounded corner in the design elements? You can use PNG transparency elements for fading design, and similarly use slicing design techniques to get gradient elements.
3. Wire Frame: Create a wire frame layout of your website. Even though you will not use this layout, it will help you to maintain a logical flow. Design the flow on paper or even in your mind. Mark out problem areas (from the first step) in this wire frame layout. Keep any eye on columns you need to code on this frame.
4. Start coding: Now it is time to go for some real coding. While converting PSD to HTML, you need to code with a logical flow. Take one element at a time as per step two. Consider following steps to produce error free code:
a. Take the font size and basic colors from PSD. Set the CSS default for these adding font families. It is imperative to set default structure for font size which can be automatically resized with IE version 6 and below (many users are still using IE 6 and lower versions). Almost all web designers maintain a template for default CSS structure. If you have one as well, just set the required font family and color and save it.
b. Get a perfect measurement for the layout so that you can easily design a wrapper. As you know all elements including content should be centered and come under this wrapper. In this stage you also need to set the resolution as the browser compatibility problems generally arise out of bad handling of resolution.
c. Coding should be done from top to bottom. Keep in mind all navigation and menu items and code accordingly. Use CSS as required with HTML.
HTML code is quite easy if you do it in a logical manner.