Theme Updated – 2nd October, 2010 (Reflection-Mod 1.2.1)
Reflection-Mod v 1.2.1 Photoblog Theme for WordPress : Demo
Reflection-Mod Logo for Header (Photoshop PSD File)
If you’d like to see a good example of Reflection-Mod integrated with Refractal to form a complete blog+photoblog, check out Markus Hellmold’s new site featuring a tight integration between both themes:
Xtropolis (WARNING: Some photographs have adult content, so it isn’t a work safe site)
Changes in Latest Reflection-Mod (1.2.1) (October 2nd, 2010)
- PHP 5.3 compatible: Thanks to Qlawy for a modified version of reflection-mod that got rid of some unsupported code. This should fix issues people were having with reflection-mod spitting out some weird code.
- Better SEO support with title and alt tags for improved SERPS – Thanks to Harry on the forums
Changes in Reflection-Mod 1.2 (January 31, 2010)
- Lightbox (SlimBox) effects can be enabled for Category/Tag archive galleries: New in version 1.2 is an option in the admin panel to enable a lightbox effect for quickly browsing through images in your category/tag archives.
- Disable/Enable automatic display of Shot Info (Post Text) with Photoblog Image: Admin panel option to enable or disable the automatic display of your Shot Info/Post text along with the photoblog image. Gives you this option depending on whether the image is of utmost importance or whether you prefer to display both the text and image as a single combined entity.
- Enable/Disable EXIF link in Photoblog
- Latest Theme Version Box in Admin Panel: The theme admin panel now displays the latest available version of Reflection-Mod with a link to the download page. Now you will always know if you have the latest version of the theme without having to actively check my site.
- Implemented a multi-level CSS drop down menu: capable of displaying multiple levels of pages in the navbar.
- Improved compatibility with older versions of PHP: Introduced an option in the Admin panel to turn of AJAX browsing of images which should make the theme compatible with practically all webhosts and PHP versions. Also includes JSON encoding for better PHP compatibility
- Ability to change image quality: Implemented an admin menu option enabling the user to specify the image quality of images. Higher quality images will take longer to download. Can be optimized for a given webhost’s speed/performance.
- Support for a lower navbar: Make a separate unordered list in header.php with an id of “navbar2″ to create a second set of hard coded links in the lower row of the navbar. Can be useful for integrating the photoblog with a regular text-blog running the Refractal theme.
- Support for Category and Tag listings. When browsing images in a category, Prev/Next image links allow you to browse single images within the same category. I think this is a key feature missing in almost all WordPress photoblog themes (Even Pixelpost). Note: You need fancy permalinks enabled in WordPress for this to work. If you have the default permalink structure, in-category browsing will not work.
- Widget ready sidebar (can be disabled): While I prefer to have a completely uncluttered look, I have enabled it to show how it looks. You can use any widget you like.
- Random images hyperlink now displays a slick slider that pops down with 7 thumbnails of random images from your archive. This allows the user to select an interesting image out of an assortment of random images.
- AJAX effects are persistent throughout the browsing process. In the original theme, clicking on Archives/Comments, etc would break the AJAX browsing mode and would switch to regular page loading.
- Robust Admin Menu with tons of options! Now you can control a host of options from the Admin menu such as Copyright Information, enabling/disabling tags, categories, sidebar, reflection-effect, header page listings, etc. This means you shouldn’t have to meddle with the actual theme code to get the look you desire.
- Downloadable Photoshop Template for creating customized header logo for the theme.
- MOST IMPORTANTLY: A brand new, matching text-blog theme – Refractal – that can be used on your website for a separate WP installation for the regular Blog component of your site. The two themes, Reflection-Mod and Refractal look and feel the same so it allows you to integrate your regular blog and your photoblog under one common umbrella!
Before you install this theme, please make sure that:
- You have installed the Yet-Another-PhotoBlog plugin correctly and that it is working. Follow the instructions on the plugin webpage to install the plugin properly.
- Once YAPB is installed, go to the YAPB options section in the Administration section and make sure to disable all the automatic image insertion options for the plugin. If you fail to do so, YAPB will conflict with Reflection-Mod and things will behave very strangely.
- Like Reflection, this theme requires every post to contain a YAPB image. If you wish to have your own content (without an image) add it in pages and not posts.
Once you have done the above:
- Download Reflection-Mod 1.2 Photoblog theme for WordPress and unzip the contents of the file.
- You should now have a directory titled ‘reflectionmod’. Copy this directory and all its contents into the wp-content/themes/ folder of your WordPress install.
- Once all the files have copied over, select Reflection-Mod from the Themes panel in the Administration section and activate it.
Creating your own Reflection-Mod Logo for the Header
This is one of the first things you probably want to change. (I presume that having your own photoblog under my name is not a very appealing option =) ). To make this process simpler for you, I’ve gone ahead and uploaded a Photoshop template for the logo. Download the Photoshop Template for the Reflection-Mod header and open it in Photoshop. The Layers in the file are labeled and you should be able to easily edit the text in the Title layer. Copy paste the same text into the reflection text layer to get your final logo. Of course, you can go crazy and make a much more creative logo if you feel like it .
For those who don’t have access to photoshop, it won’t be as easy, but creating a logo is still simple. Just open up the logo.png file in /reflectionmod/images/ in GIMP (Opensource software equivalent of Photoshop). Use the eyedropper tool to pick the color of the 1pixel gray line, and create a new 1px line of that color on a new layer and position it over the line in the original logo.png image. Then follow a tutorial such as this one to create the reflection effect on your text. Finally save your image as logo.png and overwrite the default file in the /reflectionmod/images/ folder.
Creating Archive/Mosaic Page
If you wish to have a link in your Navbar titled Archive or Mosaic, which contains an array of thumbnails of images from all your posts (grouped by year), then create a new page and make sure to select the Mosaic Page Template instead of the Default template. Unless you want to have some text preceeding the thumbnail archive display, you can leave the body of the page empty. If you have the “Disable AutoPage Listing in NavBar?” option unchecked, the Navbar will automatically update to show a link to the Archive/Mosaic page. If you do choose to disable the AutoPage listing option, then you will need to go into header.php and manually enter the URL to the Archive page as an “a href” link in the Navbar unordered list.
Creating an About Page
Create a new page titled “About”, but this time use the “Default Template” for the page. Enter whatever text you want (feel free to embed images too) and then save the page. As mentioned above, it will automatically show up in the Navbar if Autopage listing isn’t disabled.
Other Theme Customizations
Most of the other admin options are fairly self explanatory. The first few options deal with the Copyright information that is listed in the footer.
The portrait image width and landscape image width refers to the maximum width the images should have when displayed. Keep in mind that the value in these boxes should not exceed 800 as it will break the theme. (The theme is coded to have a maximum image container size of 800 pixels). The default value is 800 for landscape images and 450 for portrait images.
By default, the Sidebar is disabled. When you first enable it, it will say something like “No Widget”. You will need to add elements to the sidebar using the Widgets option in the dashboard. I am currently using the Subscribe Sidebar and the Yet-Another-Photo-Blog sidebar widget plugin on my photoblog. The latter is setup to display 5 recent thumbnails (100px width).
Permalink Structure for your PhotoBlog
I would strongly recommend that you use the fancy permalink structures for your photoblog. This will also enable in-category browsing of posts for this theme. The URL for your posts will look cleaner and the names are far more intuitive than a URL that looks like www.yourdomain.com/?p=XX . My favourite permalink structure for photoblogs is: /%category%/%postname%/ . Check the image below to see what your permalink settings should look like.
To customize the Exif data that is displayed in the overlay panel, select Exif filtering in the YAPB options and select the different field values that you would like to have displayed.
Reflection 1.2 along with Refractal is a new update, and one that I wasn’t planning on ever doing, but made possible thanks to feedback from users and encouragement from a good friend (we have come to become friends due to this theme) Markus. So if you like the theme, let me know! I don’t expect everyone to donate but it really does help a lot to know that there are folks out there who find this theme useful and enjoying it . Also if there are any features you’d love to see, let me know. I can’t guarantee anything, but you never know!
- Johannes also deserves a huge thanks for his amazing Yet-Another-Photo-Blog Plugin for WordPress.
- A big thanks to www.w3schools.com and all the other great sites on the net with some amazing tutorials that made modding the theme possible for a PHP/JS/WP newbie such as myself.
Questions? Please use the Forums