I could see this question in two aspects: the designer’s POV and the audience’s POV
- The designer’s personal POV about replicating and modifying depends on her philosophy.
- Is it OK to copy just to get it done? Is it OK to spend time to reinvent the wheel? What will the designer learn from it?
- What will the designer’s audience think about the practice of copying visual designs? What will the audience feel about a familiar experience in the design?
There are many different considerations when someone seems to have a similar UI design. I could see the thin transparent line all over the spectrum.
The most common approach in using media-query, which is also strategic, is abiding by the Mobile First principle.
- Begin your non-media queried style for mobile
- Add a media query for the next viewport size you’re designing for. For example, tablet size then desktop size
I mentioned strategic because it also tackles the concept of Less Is More or in other words, decluttering or prioritizing.
Reading about the Distributed Web.
Since you’ve already mastered the basic languages of web development (HTML, CSS, JS), you are now basically skilled as a Front-end Designer.
Now, how to be a skilled UI Designer?
- Learn how to interpret the Product Requirement Document
- Learn how to translate the Task Flow Diagram into individual Wireframes and eventually into an Interaction Diagram
- Learn how to transition the designs to the Visual Designer and Front-end Designer/Developer
A mix-and-match of the highs and lows of the following:
- Maintaining and developing the Design Process
- Planning for the learning of Designers
- Coordinating with Project Managers and Front-end Developers
- Reading articles
- Going through online courses
- Tinkering personal projects
Designers in the Team
- Interaction Designers
- User Interface Designers
- Visual Designers
Dive deep into front-end web development (HTML, CSS, and JS) and take it from there.
Start by taking on personal projects wherein you will be the one to implement the front-end development aspect.
Practice via personal projects.