One of the most important things to your success as a photographer is your portfolio, and these days our portfolios are almost entirely comprised on our personal websites or venues like Flickr and Instagram. If you’re like me and are using WordPress to showcase your portfolio, which theme you choose can make all the difference.
So with the million and one WordPress themes out there, how is one to decide? Here are some key aspects you should keep in mind if you want a great looking webpage.
Helpful Tips for Choosing a Great WordPress Theme:
- Choose a theme built especially for photographers, photo-bloggers, and portfolio showcasing. Themes that’s natively built for showcasing images will have a substantially different design than what standard blogs/websites use.
- Unless you’re a programmer or website designer, choose a theme that’s easy to customize. The last thing a non-programmer needs is to find out they need to go into the bowels of the code to make important changes.
- Look for themes that use responsive design. Responsive design ensures that your content will show up correctly, no matter what device your viewers are using. Without a responsive design, your website may look great on a desktop, but look weirdly compressed or otherwise malformed when seen on a smartphone.
- If you really want your images to look great all of the time, your WordPress theme will also need to be “retina-ready.” Retina-ready is Apple’s new high-resolution technology for getting the sharpest images that translate perfectly across all screen sizes. Sure, it’s only good on Apple products, but now-a-days that’s around 30 million people and if you want your images to look great 100% of the time and on all platforms, Apple users can’t be ignored.
- Be sure to check the comments for your premium theme – some themes might look great on the demo, but the comments will show that users are having problems with it. Check for great customer service and happy purchasers. (I actually scrapped one great-looking plug-in from this list because it had too many frustrated users in the comments section.)
If you’re looking for free themes, you probably won’t have much luck meeting the criteria above, but if you’re willing to invest in a premium theme you’ll find they’re well-worth the money once you’ve found the right one.
The 5 Best WordPress Themes for Photographers
Once you’ve found themes that meet these 5 criteria, the rest is pretty much up to personal taste and the particular needs of your website/portfolio. Even with these standards, there will still be countless themes to filter through. To help you out, we’ve chosen five of the best WordPress themes out there for photographers right now:
1. Monstroid2 – Universal Theme for Photographers
Monstroid2 is a multipurpose WordPress theme can become a trustworthy base for your photographer portfolio. You have the freedom to select from a few related skins included in the package. It is no doubt that each of them has a gallery function that will showcase your visual content at its best.
In addition to this, it includes an eye-catching Parallax effect to engage your audience. You can also take advantage of the video player and background. WooCommerce integration will help those photographers to require selling their services on the web. Do not forget that everyone has a chance to communicate with you using a contact form.
2. FloThemes – Professional Photography Theme
FloThemes is a selection of fourteen customizable website templates that allows you to choose a theme that harmonizes with the nature of your business and your photographic style. The templates are beautifully and professionally designed, so it’s easy to create a slick custom website. The Leon theme can be fully personalized with custom fonts and colors to match your logo and look. It’s designed for both still and video photographers, works across multiple platforms, and incorporates Instagram and MailChimp plugins — a huge time saver.
The Porto2 theme is ideal for sell-through, with clickable sign-ups and messaging, whereas Milèa is designed to showcase stunning photography with full-screen images on every landing page. Flothemes customer support is available through online chats, making the setup super easy.
3. Bleecker – Responsive Retina-Ready WP Portfolio
Bleeker is one of the newer WordPress themes on the market and features an sleek, elegant, design that stands out amongst the crowd. It features a simple, grid-system layout, animated portfolios, and forward-thinking formatting so that it will be easy to adapt to future innovations. It’s optimized for mobile touch and has many tools integrated into the WordPress administration panel, making it easy to customize.
4. FLEXIT – Theme for Photographers and Portfolios
If you’re the type of photographer that wants your best shots front and center, Flexit might be the one for you. This theme has a strong focus on images and even the home page can double as a portfolio. It features 8 different gallery types, photo walls, and an optional parallax effect to make your images look their best.
5. King Size – Fullscreen Photography Theme
This WordPress theme is aptly named “King Size” because the home page serves as an eye-catching mini-portfolio with a full-screen slide show. The gallery sections offer flexibility with column or grid layouts and unlimited uploads. The same goes for the portfolio sections, with a choice of seven layouts. The template has retina display, woo commerce compatibility, and includes a visual composer and a custom color picker. Highly responsive customer support and video tutorials will have you up and running in no time.
Besides the top 5 WordPress themes listed above, here is another one worth looking into.
Titan – Responsive Portfolio Photography Theme
Titan is a WordPress theme designed for photographers in mind. It’s pages are quite minimalist and sparse on text, making the photos the primary point of focus. Both the set-up and design are incredibly simple, and even the most inexperienced of WordPress users can get their websites up and running fairly quickly.
If none of these WordPress themes do it for you, there are still many more out there. If you’re already using one and love it, we’d love to know what it is and why it’s special.