Welcome to the UPDC tips page! This page gives general advice on designing your userpage.
Choose an approach
You could design your userpage as your:
Personal profile page
An autobiographical user page presents you to the community, and could include your views, your objectives, and your contributions, among just about anything else about you. When just starting out, the standard article format is the easiest way to present information on yourself.
Personal Main page
With a link at the top of every page, your userpage is a convenient place to put what you frequently access. You could include content via template, such as ((signpost-subscription)) ((totd)) and ((potd)). Or you could design it to be your customizable Wikipedia navigation hub. Or both.
A space to organize your tasks and projects. It could contain wish lists, links to works-in-progress, your to-do list, and so on.
Customized advice/instruction page
As you acquire experience as a Wikipedian, keep in mind that your user page is the perfect place to share it. It's where other users go to find out more about you, what you are like, and how you think. You can use to present your editing and organizational knowhow, express your wikiphilosophy, and share your dream for Wikipedia.
This approach is for users who find that one page just isn't enough. Set up separate pages for separate uses. A menu bar at the top of each page can visually tie each page together, and help to navigate between them. See Menus and subpages.
Multi-purpose user page design
Mix and match elements of the above approaches to fit your goals and needs.
Be creative, and...
Nothing tells more about who you are than a work of art that you create. Make your user page that work of art! If you get stuck, borrow. There's no penalty for "stealing" an idea from someone else, just be sure to change it around and make it yours or give them credit for the idea. Examples: User:ElAmericano, User:The prophet wizard of the crayon cake
Don't be shy. The meat of most userpages is the bio of the person behind it. Other editors wish to get to know you. Why disappoint them? Many great userpages have detailed bios. Examples: User:Antandrus and User:Binksternet.
Who are you? Where do you live? What are your hobbies? What is your area of expertise? What kind of work do you do here at Wikipedia? Especially that last one. What are your hopes and aspirations for this encyclopedia? What is your vision of what it can become? Example: User:CatherineMunro.
Sharing your dreams may make them come true.
Another example of Wikimagic.
Experiment and don't be afraid to ask for help
You're highly encouraged to experiment with markup; in the same line as being creative, it also gives you some valuable experience with HTML. After all, what's a userpage if you can't understand the code on it? And don't be afraid to ask for help if you get stuck.
Consider a theme
Many of the best userpages present a theme. It can be an artistic theme in the layout, or a conceptual theme in the content presentation. If you would like your page to stand out, then avoid making it a loosely tied assortment of random boxes and tidbits of information.
Mix up your colors
Stylistically, colors can really affect a page's appeal. They can accent a theme. They can set a mood. They can imply your nature. Are you always smiling? Then bright colors could help you present yourself as a happy person to the entire world. Smooth, splashy, serene, or serious – they can all be attained via colors. For color codes, see Web colors. For how to apply them to page elements, see User:The_prophet_wizard_of_the_crayon_cake.
Use images to get your point across
Some of the most striking user pages present a radical combination of images to impact the viewer. What better way to get one's point across? They don't say "a picture is worth a thousands words" for nothing. And while words can familiarize someone with the inner you, images can provide an actual glimpse for them into your world. See How to place an image and Wikipedia:Picture tutorial. Or find a picture in a Wikipedia article, and copy its wikicode from the edit window.
But, before you use images, be sure to see Wikipedia:Image dos and don'ts.
Images are also a major component of the encyclopedia, and are another way for contributors to shine. Your user page is the perfect place to showcase your visual contributions, sprinkled throughout the page, or presented as a gallery.
Many more free pictures can be found at Wikimedia Commons.
Bigger is not necessarily better
Some users keep it short and sweet. The less you say, the more weight each word carries. In the minimalist approach, a user might just state the one or a handful of things they wish to emphasize. Or simply provide links to elsewhere, relying on subpages to elaborate—this may make a crisp and clean first impression. One such design is the "hub" style userpage: like the one by AxG. (The User Page Design Center's main page utilizes a hub design). Another is the central image style, showcasing a single picture, accompanied by tabs or a menu for further navigation, like used by Trevor_MacInnis. Generally, "minimalist" would be a page that requires no scrolling.