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Best WordPress Themes for Photographers & Designers in 2018

April 29, 2018

There are a lot of well-designed WordPress themes out there. Serving a lot of different purposes. There are even some that can pretty much carry a site design by themselves. But as a photographer, designer or visual artist, you don’t need the theme to stand out for you, you need a theme that lets your work do the talking, without getting in the way.

The themes listed in this post will all share this key quality. This means that many of the themes recommended here will look similar, but will differ in functionality and feel, and typography and other ways. Anyway, here are 20+ of the very best WordPress themes for a photographer in 2018.

Disclaimer: WPExplorer is an affiliate for one or more products listed below. If you click a link and complete a purchase we could make a commission.

1. Vega

vegaphotography

With Vega, you can again choose how you want your homepage to look from several different well-designed templates. It includes 11 different gallery layout templates, as well as filterable portfolio functionality. There’s also a content builder that allows you creative control in the way your gallery or portfolio is put together.

2. Total

Total WordPress Portfolio

While Total is technically a multipurpose theme, it has an advanced and customizable portfolio built-in. The theme supports the most common media formats (image, gallery, audio, video) and pages layouts are fully customizable thanks to the included front-end page builder. Create your design using sliders, callouts, buttons, graphs, galleries, maps and more.

The Total theme even includes 40+ quick-start demos, a header & footer builder, premium sliders, hundreds of customizer options, SEO friendly code and support for popular plugins… including WooCommerce, so if you want to sell your photography you can!

3. Pronto (Free)

Pronto Free Masonry Gallery WordPress Theme

Pronto is a free WordPress theme designed for photographers, designers and other creatives to create a simple portfolio fast (pronto!). The theme includes easy options for adding posts, uploading a custom logo, inserting galleries and tweaking theme colors (just change the accent color in the live theme Customizer).

4. Visia

visiatheme

Visia is a one-page theme that features a very appealing slider on the homepage by default. But you can also choose to change the layout on the homepage to one of the other, equally attractive templates.

It has a drag and drop gallery builder, and a tool that lets you custom crop your images. It also has built-in lazy loading. This means that the browser will only load what is ‘above the fold, meaning, what’s visible in your browser window, and can make website loading speeds much faster.

5. GK Portfolio (Free)

gkportfolio

A more traditional portfolio style theme. There’s a heavy focus on your visual content, while also giving you some options like adding visible tags to pictures to help people do more educated browsing.

6. Darkroom

darkroomphotographytheme

This is a full-screen theme aimed at photographers. It offers a sleek homepage that really makes your selected pictures the centerpiece of your whole website. You can choose from a few different homepage templates; single image, slider, carousels and you can even set video as your background. Choose either a YouTube or Vimeo video, or a self-hosted video file, which will be displayed as the fullscreen background of your website. The theme’s portfolio design is sleek and very content-focused. Nothing to stand in your way here.

7. Marble

marblephotographytheme

Marble’s default homepage has a seamless mosaic layout that looks great. But there’s also five other templates, including a magazine style, as well as a more traditional agency style homepage that has room for copywriting and talk about services.

Marble also comes with a drag and drop page builder, allowing you create unique galleries or other pages with ease. There’s also a built-in portfolio design, and the theme is compatible with Woo Commerce, making it possible to integrate a photography/print/other store into your website.

8. PhotoPro

PhotoPro WordPress Theme

For a unique portfolio layout try PhotoPro. The horizontal scrolling homepage gallery makes an impressive statement. Then create sub galleries for all of your imagery choosing a scroller or masonry layout, add flexsliders, select from 4 pre-set theme skins, pick a lightbox style and more.

9. Thumbs Portfolio (Free)

Thumbs Portfolio Free Theme

This is another grid-style theme that functions in the same way. The difference is that the Thumbs Portfolio a little more minimalistic, perhaps with a little more focus on the visual content thanks to the clean gallery grid.

10. Lens

lenstheme

The default homepage of Lens is a full-page mosaic-style gallery, with a menu on the left side. But you can choose to make it a slider, full screen slider, portfolio, full width single image and more. You can also change the color themes and tweak other design details in the theme options.

A thing that makes Lens stand out from the competition is that it has built-in animated transitions. So when you’re navigating the website, instead of just seeing a white screen when you click a link before anything loads, there’s an appealing visual transition.

It’s also compatible with WooCommerce making it possible for you to integrate a store for your pictures, prints or other things right on your very website, managed from within the WordPress Dashboard.

11. Zyra

zyratheme

Zyra is a full-screen photography theme, with the default homepage being a slider with a menu on the left side. Unlike many of the other themes, Zyra doesn’t offer countless different homepage templates, but when the standard one is as good-looking as it is, why would you want to change it?

The color scheme is fully customizable from within the theme options, and there is video support for all pages. Meaning you could make a video the first piece in your homepage slider or gallery. Zyra also supports WooCommerce, so again, creating an online store is an option with this theme.

12. Twinkle (Free)

Twinkle WordPress Theme

A rather minimalistic theme with a full-width recent posts section on the homepage and a simple but elegant centered posts layout. It also takes the images from the featured images and automatically links to posts making this another good choice for photobloggers with something to say.

13. ePix

epixtheme

ePix is one of the best selling full-screen photography themes. The default homepage is a full-screen slider, with a hideable menu bar on the left. It has lazy load built in, making the visible part of the site load faster, by not loading photos and other media on parts of the site that are not visible in the browser window yet.

It comes packed with many different color schemes, 6 gallery templates and a page builder (visual composer). This means you have a lot of creative control over how your website will look, even if you don’t know a single line of code. It also supports Woo Commerce, so again, creating an online store is an option with this theme.

14. dk

dktheme

dk is another very popular alternative. The default homepage has a fullscreen slider with a slight pixelation effect on the pictures. As well as the option of background music, adding another layer of visitor experience to experiment with for those who are interested. It offers 10 different page templates, several gallery templates, and support for videos.

15. Pineapple (Free)

Pineapple Free WordPress Theme

If you want a minimalistic website design then Pineapple is the perfect free theme for you. Pineapple is a simple blog that can be used as a gallery, as the main feature of the theme design is your posts’ featured images. Pineapple also support video, audio and quote post formats so you can add all of your creative works.

16. Tripod

tripodtheme

Another popular choice, Tripod offers a drag-and-drop layout builder that makes it easy to make a custom grid style homepage that plays well with your chosen images. One of the things that stand out about this theme, are it’s built-in animation effects that adds extra clarity to the low-key menu. It also supports WooCommerce, so again, creating an online store is an option with this theme as well.

17. Expression

expression

Another bestseller, Expression offers a lot of customization options to users. Not only can you choose from different pre-made templates, you can also create your own from the ground up, changing everything from color schemes to layout, to typography. The theme also has a partial image loading function built in to help with page loading speed.

18. Tracks (Free)

trackstheme

Tracks is a beautiful free theme that is ideal for photo blogging. If you like to tell stories or add poetry to the pictures you share, this is a great choice. Just use the built-in options for columns, customizer settings, author widget and more.

19. Armada

armada

A powerful theme with many customizations, without compromising on page speed. The default homepage features a beautiful animated fullscreen slider. And in addition to other included templates, Armada also offers a drag and drop builder to help you create your own design. Armada also supports WooCommerce, so again, creating an online store is an option with this theme.

20. Nikko Portfolio (Free)

Nikko Portfolio Theme

Nikko is a free portfolio theme perfect for starting your own photo blog or to build a portfolio online. Use the options for custom backgrounds, your own logo, and easy gallery options to get started quickly (and for free).

21. Core

coreminimalistphotography

The bestselling Photography theme on Themeforest. There are three different homepage templates, and you have the option to add background music if you want. It has 4 different portfolio styles to choose from, and a few key animated effects that add a certain flow and feel to the website. The core selling point of Core is the minimalistic approach, how the theme gets out of the way and lets the content do the heavy lifting.

22. Fluxus

fluxustheme

Another minimalistic theme, the default homepage here is a slider, with a discreet topside menu. It features a flexible grid portfolio layout that adapts to the dimensions of the pictures you choose to include. Video support in portfolio and elsewhere. As well as a range of customization options among other things.

23. Photocrati Framework

photocrati

Rather than selling a single theme for photographers, Photocrati is more of a framework approach, similar to Elegant themes, only focused solely on photographers. For one price, you get the main framework, as well as access to lots of different templates to choose from.

A few of them are very appealing and could very well be sold as stand-alone themes right alongside some of the themes on this list. The theme itself comes with some heavy features. For example built-in ecommerce. If you’re in the business of selling prints or other things and want to move that online, Photocrati makes it easy.

24. Border

bordertheme

With a unique and very sleek design, Border stands out from the bunch. Instead of having the menu to one side, above or below, Border has a thin white border around the image where the header and menu options are evenly spread out.

I has nice animated transitions for the menu and when you opt to go to a new page. You can also opt to overlay animated text on pictures where needed. It also has project pages that would be perfect to showcase individual standout projects, video support along with tons of customization options.

25. Photojax

Photojax Dark Theme

Photojax includes a dark and a light skin so you can quickly style your site to showcase your work. Simply select you favorite color skin, add music to your homepage for ambiance, then add your photographs to build out your site.

26. Oyster

oystertheme

The default homepage is a full-screen slider with a menu at the top. There are also other template options, along with light and dark skins. You have several designs to choose from for portfolios and galleries, and features an auto load function for visitors who are scrolling through your galleries. It has a drag and drop page builder, and even a coming soon page function

27. Chocolate

chocolatetheme

Another heavyweight in the themeforest marketplace, Chocolate is a full-screen theme with a slider on the default homepage. While not as minimalistic as many of the other themes, the sleek design flows well and let’s the images do most of the heavy lifting. If you’d prefer a clean, dark design, this just might be the right choice for you.

28. Gridsby (Free)

Gridsby Free WordPress Theme

Gridsby is a simple grid style theme to showoff your photography. The homepage displays feature images of posts, so this is an ideal theme for those who want to showcase their work (and only their work) front and center. The theme is also retina and responsive ready so your images always looks great.

29. Brick+Mason

Brick+Mason Theme

Brick+Mason is a photography and portfolio theme designed for photographers and design studios. The theme includes a clean (and responsive) masonry layout, slide-out sidebar, infinite scroll option, easy theme options via the live Customizer, custom Google fonts and more.

30. CleanPortfolio (Free)

CleanPortfolio Free Theme

The CleanPortfolio free theme is a cleanly designed portfolio theme. There are easy options in the for creating your portfolio, adding your social media links, including header media text, and more. It’s a quick and simple way to showcase your photography fast.

Conclusion

There are three main approaches to visual portfolio themes; showing a few select photos, with discrete links to further images/information, or showcasing a single photo (or video or other piece of visual artwork) on the homepage, or having a slider on the homepage to showcase one piece at a time. Which one of these you prefer might dictate your choice of theme… however, many of the themes on this list have all three as options, regardless of the default.

So if you spotted a design you liked, but would rather it had a grid or full-screen style homepage, take a second to check the features. It just might be the theme you’ve been looking for.

Did we miss some? What’s your favorite theme of 2018 so far? Let us know in the comments.

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5 Comments

  1. Tony says:

    Great collection. Looking forward to see the similar collection for WooCommerce themes.

  2. Billson says:

    I have searched from almost one month for free but beautiful and attractive WordPress themes. I have found many blogs and those all have little bit shortcomings in all themes. Finally I have found your blog and you have provided amazing list of perfect photography themes. as a web developer I can understand very well that only these types of theme can attract more people’s attraction towards website.I will definitely use some of these themes.

  3. Somnath Jadhav says:

    Very useful listing. I will give a try.

    Bridge theme has more options to create portfolio website than many other themes. Best for artists, photographers and freelancers.

    • Kyla Avatar Kyla says:

      If you like Bridge you should really look at the Total Theme. You can build anything with it! We’re still working on new demos, but our theme has just as many if not more features than the other multipurpose themes out there. And we’ve built-in a ton of developer tools (snippets, filters, etc) that you definitely don’t get with other themes.

  4. Jonathon Kabir says:

    Most of clients need photo themes for their photography blog. I recommended them Vega theme. I created my blog using vega theme.

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