Until late 90’s, online publishing wasn’t as easy as it is in current times, it was the evolution of Blogger that started to make this space easier for common person who are technically challenged. Although, it were CMSes like Drupal, WordPress, Joomla & various other open source systems that upped the game by giving more power in the hands of publishers at much lower cost as the whole platform is completely free, the only cost involved is customization of the platform and the way content is displayed which is nothing if we compare the power and flexibility we get using these content management systems.
It was the evolution of blogging that brought many significant changes in the web ecosystem and one of them is that there are far more webmasters now and hundreds of them are becoming professional webmasters every day. I personally believe that its WordPress that has contributed significantly in this space. Its user friendly, has great documentation and has awesome community around it. WordPress is fast becoming the first choice for every publisher, people are shifting on it and this increase in demand is making web design companies adopt WordPress and one of the reason why we see so many companies offering premium WordPress templates and companies offering WordPress design services.
With that, I thought of coming up with a resourceful post that’ll help the new Web designer turned WordPress designers in making their lives easier!
Resources for Coding
- WordPress Codex: What can be better than the official codex itself? The documentation itself is wonderful and that is one of the reason why developers were quick to adopt WordPress.
- WP Engineer: WP Engineer has lots of posts with codes and lots of posts with tips that are surely going to help beginners. It’s a must bookmark blog for all those who want to learn coding in WordPress.
- Cheat Sheets: Dainis Graveris has listed 23 extremely useful cheat sheets for programmers and WordPress designers. This is one resource that you will love to the core.
- Tutorials for Developing WordPress themes: Vandelay design has posted a fantastic list of tutorials that help newbie’s in understanding WordPress theme designing.
- WordPress Mailing lists: WordPress official mailing list is the best place to keep yourself up to date with that is happening around WordPress and what are the new changes or requests made by the community. It’ll not only keep you up to date with the current status, it gives you the idea about what may be the next big feature of WordPress.
WordPress Theme Frameworks
A theme framework is the flexible foundation, that can be used to build WordPress themes faster and quicker, without worrying about coding various basic functionalities. Someone with prior experience in CSS would be able to quickly adapt to WordPress designing. We are listing some of the most popular theme frameworks over here.
- Thematic – Thematic is a free, open-source, highly extensible, search-engine optimized WordPress Theme Framework featuring 13 widget-ready areas, grid-based layout samples, styling for popular plugins, and a whole community behind it. It’s perfect for beginner bloggers and WordPress development professionals.
- Gantry is the product of Rocket Theme, a well-known theme development agency. Perhaps, the most interesting fact about Gantry is that it could be used for theme development for WordPress, Joomla, and Grav.
- Genesis by StudioPress is perhaps the best-known theme development framework for WordPress. Developed and maintained by StudioPress, Genesis powers some of the most popular WordPress themes. The real strength of the framework is its robust and highly optimized code that results in a very clean and error-free theme.
- Hybrid Core is developed by ThemeHybrid and is released under GPL license. This means that the developers could use the framework for free. However, do not equate the cost of the framework to the value it adds to the theme development process.
- iThemes Builder is an option-packed theme development framework that is supported b a very competent team. The framework is ideal for developers who are looking for a hassle-free way of implementing a pre-approved design. The most important aspect of using iThemes Builder is the ease of developing a custom layout for the WordPress website.
- PageLines dubs itself as “the easiest ways of design and customizes WordPress websites”.
- Roots offer an end-to-end product lineup that takes care of everything about WordPress development. Adopting a very broad and a unique approach, Roots offers three distinct but inter-related products.
- Thesis prides itself on being accessible to everyone, regardless of the style and complexity of the website. The theme development frameworks are well-known for three features that ensure that every theme and website built using Thesis is both functional and attractive.
- WordPress theme development could not get more authentic than Underscores, a starter theme that is built and maintained by Automattic, the company behind WordPress.
- Headway has been around since 2009 and is now considered a pioneer in drag-and-drop layout design process for WordPress. If you are considering Headway for your next project, know that Headway is currently facing financial difficulties and might not be able to provide full service.
WordPress Books for newbie WordPress designers
There are various books written for WordPress and many are yet to be published. There are some fantastic books for WordPress, although I would like to mention these books for those who seriously want to be WordPress designers.
- Rockstar WordPress Designer – This is a fantastic e-book as it is focused on those who want to shift from regular web designing and want to become WordPress designers!
- Vladimir Prelovac – Vladimir has created lots and useful and some of the most popular plugins for WordPress. He’s a great authority in WordPress plugin development. This book should be in arsenal of those who want to develop WordPress plugins.
I hope these resources will be useful for anyone who wants to be a pro WordPress Designer. If you know any more resources, then please point them to us and we’d be more than happy to include them here.