On the road to WordPress mastery

It has been for quite some time that I wanted to expand my creative horizons into website creation, and in particular, using systems and processes that would greatly benefit my clients needs (as well as my own!). I started my journey with various online learning tutorials in HTML and CSS, before getting the excellent—From Photoshop to HTML by Jeffery Way—which turned out to be an invaluable resource… but I will talk about that education tool another time.

How to be a rockstar WordPress designer enters my world

After much research I decided that creating templates (aka themes) for WordPress would be the best fit for me and in the typical Kiwi / Aussie she’ll be right attitude, I dived straight into enforcing my will on a seeming timid standard WP install. It turns out that WP is rather complicated in it’s simplicity and even though I was able to alter the look of a default template, I quickly realised that I was going to need some outside assistance if I was to corral this WP monster.

How to be a rockstar WordPress DesignerAfter an intense search of the internet I found an ebook that has been an incredible help – How To Be A Rockstar WordPress Designer by Collis Ta’eed & Harley Alexander. Having already grasped the basics of HTML and CSS from my previous learnings I found this book to be easy to understand and logically laid out. I must admit that I have still to grasp object oriented programming in PHP, but that is an advanced topic that the book only touches on briefly so I don’t feel ‘under gunned’ when approaching a WP theme.

Rockstar WordPress Designer takes you from Photoshop, to static HTML/CSS, and through to fully functioning WP theme. The book comes complete with Photoshop, HTML / CSS and theme files for each step of the way. I found this to be an amazing resource, and in one occasion comparing the finished code to my own code was the only way I was able to find and correct an error that had broken my template (I had a comma where there should have been a semi-colon… rookie mistake, but a big one none the less).

Over the course of the book you will build three WP themes starting with a blog, then a portfolio site, and finally a general site. The book states that you do not need any prior knowledge of PHP or WordPress (luckily for me), but you will require a solid understanding of HTML and CSS.
I can highly recommend this ebook to anyone with an interest in WordPress theming, it is straight forward, no non-sense, without taking itself too seriously. To find out more and to download some sample pages follow this link.

Rockable press has a great selection of educational ebooks centred around web design and blogging. Chances are they will have something for you that will expand your understanding and make you a champion web designer and blogger. Check out Rockable press here.

Rockable Press

Creative Agency Brochure indesign Template

This clean and professional indesign template is perfectly suited for those in need of a creative agency style brochure. It’s well-considered layout lends itself well to creative pitches or portfolio use.

Everything is fully editable and style sheeted, just alter the swatches to suit your own branding colours. Change the fonts throughout is as easy as updating a couple of paragraph styles and the included Indesign library files make adding new content to new blank spreads as simple as ‘Click & Drag’.

The 200 x 200mm trim size creates a professional and individual look to the finished brochure. But, for a more traditional finished size I have reworked and released an 8.5 x 11 agency brochure available exclusively at changetheimage.com. The 8.5 x 11 inch template has had the layouts, paragraph styles, object styles, page girds, margins and columns overhauled to make the most of the extra space offered by the new page shape. Check it out here.

Creative Agency Brochure indesign template

Features:

  • 24 page indesign template
  • 200mm x 200mm trim size
  • 3mm bleed
  • CMYK print ready
  • Text styled with Paragraph & Character style sheets
  • Spreads contained in ‘Pages Library’ file included to make page addition simple
  • Main elements contained in ‘Elements Library’ to make element addition simple
  • Columned layout
  • Rich black used for Black tint panels
  • Dynamic page numbering
  • Easy to follow visual help file
  • PDF sample included
  • Images NOT included in download (see full listing for more details)
  • Font used – Myriad Pro

Available now for the low price of $13, visit the full listing for more details.