advanced photoshop

Tutorial preview: Build effective WordPress themes

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Magazine previews, by Julie Bassett

In this tutorial we look at how to design and slice Wordpress themes using the tools in Photoshop

WordPress is the best-known blogging platform around and it’s perfect for setting up your own blog site to promote your work and services. However, if you really want to make your site stand out, then it pays to use custom themes. There are loads of them out there on sites like and (in fact, we have a fantastic theme from on our free disc in issue 92 worth an amazing $39, which you can try out). However, if you really want to make an impression, then you could use your Photoshop know-how to create your own WordPress themes from scratch, adding a personal touch that really shows-off your creativity.

Over these eight pages, we will take a look at the key design rules of a good WordPress theme, slicing a theme ready for coding and even show you a plug-in that turns a PSD into a WordPress theme without the hassle. We don’t go into the coding aspect of this, but be sure to take a look at our sister magazine Web Designer ( for some great advice on this side of creating WordPress themes. Being able to design your own WordPress themes in Photoshop can be great for two reasons. First, you can personalise your blog just the way you want it and this will catch the eye of potential clients. Second, you can sell your themes or theme design services to help make extra cash on the side.

There are some general rules that you should bear in mind when you are looking at designing a WordPress theme. Learn these and you will be churning out winning themes in no time.

Read more in issue 92 of Advanced Photoshop, on sale from 26 January 2012 via

Tutorial preview: Build effective WordPress themes