Published by on November 6, 2019 • 0 Comments • Lire en Français

Often, when visiting photographer websites, I am surprised by how complex they are.

Photos of couples, weddings, babies, families, events… Most of the time, beginner website creators creators of beginner sites tend to overdo it.

The result being: visitors get lost. 

Photographers are meant to take pictures, not to make websites.

With this article, I would like to share some good practices with photographers (even amateur photographers) who want to create their own website.

You will then discover a selection of 15+ WordPress photography themes. They'll help you display your shots in the best way.

Alright with you? Then let's get started.

9 Tips for a Successful Photographer website

Conseils pour réussir son site de photographe

Whether you are creating your first website or already have an online presence, these recommendations will help you stand out from the crowd.

Read them carefully and think about how to apply them to your website.

Let's go!

Keep it simple

It may seem obvious, but we all come across sites where we wonder: “What did the creator have in mind?

Don't add unnecessary texts, don't place widgets just to “make it look good”, keep simple and explicit menus. This will help you avoid the “Christmas Tree Syndrome”.

Monitor your Loading Speed

Loading speed is one of the criteria used by search engines to rank their results. Your website has to load its pages very quickly. Plus, you don't want to keep your visitors waiting, don't you?

Choose a good cache solution like WP Rocket and compress your images. Be careful: their quality must also be high, otherwise you will shoot yourself in the foot. Now, up to you to find the right balance.

Think about SEO

If your customers are local and you are not yet well-established, you will have to work hard on search engines. Optimize your local SEO by placing the names of the cities you are working in (without turning your footer into a map of the country, tho). A word of advice: create a Google My Business page without further delay.

Creating a blog allows you to have more traffic. Publish articles that may be of interest to your potential customers to make yourself visible on the Internet.

Be easily reachable

Great: you seduced your first visitor! Now he's trying to contact you. He's still looking. A little longer. And hop on! He's moving on. Too bad…

Your contact page must be easily accessible. Put it in your menu, and why not in an insert on your sidebar. After all, you want customers, don't you?

Use a contact form and display your email (or even your phone number) to put all the chances on your side.

Forget music!

There is nothing more annoying than music that starts automatically. Yes, I assure you. Personally, I automatically close all these websites without thinking! If people listen to something else while surfing, it will annoy them even more. Remember that they are there to discover your pictures, not to have a party.

Be niche-oriented

As in many professions, you have to be specialized in something. By definition, generalists do not excel in a particular discipline.

By that, I mean that a wedding photographer will be less good at taking pictures of objects for companies. Find your way, and go for it!

Differentiate yourself

Add this “little something” that will make you unforgettable. This could be your brand, a particular site layout or a specific positioning.

Be careful not to look ridiculous or make your site unusable.

Get active on social networks

Many photographers use Facebook, Flickr or Pinterest to promote their work. Don't believe me?

Look at the number of people who like and share the content from this French photographer. For a page followed by more than 2,000 people, that's very honourable!

Your most beautiful images will be shared, so show your talent 😉

Organize photo albums

Putting pictures in bulk on your site is fine at first, but then it starts to get messy. Creating albums can help you better organize your website (and simplify your visitors' navigation).

As we will see below, this is sometimes directly embed in the themes (you can even define passwords on the albums for your customers).

Go responsive

More than 40% of all web traffic in the USA comes from mobile phones: it is therefore impossible to design WordPress websites without taking into account the responsive aspect (optimal display on smartphones and tablets, in particular).

Not to mention that Google's Mobile First index, which considers that the mobile version of your site is its “real” version, continues to be deployed. So if your theme is not responsive – most of them are -, hurry up and get in compliance !

Indeed, there are a lot of things to consider when creating a photographer website 😉

If everything is ok with you, let's move on to the WordPress photography themes I selected.

15+ of the best WordPress photography themes

WordPress photography themes you'll want to try out

Wanna display your work the way it should be?

In order to offer you the best selection, I acted as if I had to work on your project.

Of course, I don't know exactly what your needs are, but I made sure to filter out all the themes that seemed inappropriate to me.

Before presenting the results of my research, I wanted to clarify a thing: I did not test individually the themes presented in this article.

I selected these, rather than others, because of their design, the features they offer, or the reputation of their authors (by examining customer comments, for example).

In my opinion, these are the best WordPress photography themes that are available on the market today.

Enough with the chit-chat. Without further ado, here are 19 themes that I particularly appreciated.

Info: For the sake of transparency, I would like to inform you that most of the links leading to these themes are affiliate links. This means that WPMarmite will receive a small commission if you buy one of them.

These earnings reward the research and writing work done for this article, and help finance the development of the blog. Thank you for your support 🙂

Border

As its name suggests, this theme has a frame that can be found all around the website. This is a trend that can be often found on photo websites. I think it brings a little something original.

Border: a WordPress photography website

You will see many different gallery styles are available. This theme is also optimized for WooCommerce, so you can sell your shots.

For the rest, I enjoyed the lateral navigation:

  • The small vertical dots on the right allow you to scroll through the slider's photos. That's a good idea. Note that you can also integrate videos.
  • The hamburger menu, discreet, fits very well into the overall design.

Price of this theme: 75$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Oshine

Rather famous on Themeforest – it has more than 25,000 sales at the time of writing – Oshine is a refined and sober theme that could be described as a “multifunctional”.

In other words, it can help to carry out different projects. In all, it offers about 40 demos that can be activated in one click. They will adapt to many projects (wedding, architecture, restaurant, photography, digital agency…).

You got it: we will focus on one of the photography demos (there are 7 in total).

Oshine : a WordPress photo theme

generally, I'm not a big fan of this kind of template. But here, I must admit that the site demos are quite well done.

The style is refined, the navigation is fluid, and your photos will be really highlighted.

On the functional side, Oshine includes a Visual Suilder called Tatsu, and offers many options (hover effects, compatibility with WooCommerce, carousel, lightbox, different styles for the menu and header…).

Price of this theme: 59$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Uno

If you want sophistication, the Uno theme should appeal to you. It is full of different layouts for its galleries and portfolio. If you take a lot of portraits, the “Striped” mode will be perfect.

Uno : a WordPress photography template

Uno is available in two styles, black (dark) or white (light). Up to you to see which one suits you the best 🙂

I particularly appreciated the minimalist and refined design of this theme. It reflects both a classy and clear image of your activity.

For example, the homepage has a slider that displays your photos on almost the entire screen. Ideal to highlight your most beautiful shots.

Price of this theme: 59$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Vignette

This theme is quite simple. You can put a video or image in the header with a engaging title and a call-to-action. Just below, you can place pages describing the services you offer.

Thumbnail, an original WordPress theme for photographers

But the most interesting thing is underneath all of this. Vignette will allow you to insert photo galleries from your previous shoots. These galleries can be displayed in 3 different layouts.

Price of this theme: $49 with 12 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Clean Photo

Clean Photo is a refined WordPress theme that makes you immediately want to scroll. The sober colors (with their predominance of white and grey), and the spacing between the photos highlight your navigation.

The WordPress photographer theme Clean Photo

As for options, Clean Photo offers 3 homepage layouts. Several blog pages are also available – and I particularly appreciate the checkered layout.

Another interesting point: two About page templates have been designed: one if you work alone, and another if you work in a team.

Check out the overview of all this theme's layouts in the demo.

Price of this theme: 69$ with 6 months of support.

Discover the theme See the demo

Folie

Despite what its name suggests, Folie is not a completely wacky theme (“Folie” meaning “madness” in French). Rather, it is characterized by its clarity.

The vertical menu is displayed on the left with the site title, a small presentation pitch, and social network icons. Clean and precise.

Is Folie the best WordPress photography theme?

In my opinion, one of the strengths of Folie is how the portfolio is organized. I appreciate the fact that it spreads out in full-width, over the whole rest of the site. You will also notice some nice functionalities, such as:

  • The possibility to filter your photos by category.
  • The display of the photo title on the mouse hover, which triggers the opening of a gallery in which your photos appear in a lightbox.

If you do not like the example above, check out the page of this theme's creator. It presents 3 other demos all ready for photographers.

Folie being a multi-purpose theme integrating a Page Builder, you can also use it for any type of project unrelated to photography.

Price of this theme: 59$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Timber

Some WordPress photo themes offer a horizontal scrolling of photos (this is called filmstrip mode). This is the case with Timber.

Personally, I find it quite amusing. It's a little confusing at first, because there's a tendency to want to scroll down the page. But in the end, it's nice and allows you to stand out from the crowd of the more classic themes.

Timber is a quite differentiating WordPress theme for photography

Timber is also optimized for WooCommerce. But wait, I'll save the best for you at the end. What I like most about this theme is the fact that it protects galleries with a password, and allows the customer to upload the photos of his choice. That's very well done!

Price of this theme: 75$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Lens

Even if Lens has become more and more famous since it hosted one of the Louvre Museum's website, nothing to do with the French city of Lens here. Lens is indeed a WordPress photography theme.

And you will see below that it stands out from the competition.

Lens, an astonishing WordPress photography template

How can you not stand out with this bright yellow color that appears on the hover (mouse hover), for instance on the photos on the home page?

The menu is positioned on the left. A simple mouse click on small arrows triggers the display of a sub-menu. How effective!

As for the previous theme, you can download the photos you want via a password-protected gallery. (In fact, the author of the theme is the same, so here's for the explanation).

Price of this theme: 75$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Two Fold

Are you looking for creativity to stand out from the competition? I think you should like TwoFold.

This theme is not a classic one, starting with its 11 homepage templates, each more innovative than the last. Take the one called Cube Effect, for instance. It allows you to switch from one photo to another by turning them back, on scroll.

TwoFold is such a creative WordPress theme

Personally, I like the attention to detail put into this: the mouse cursor which is transformed into a cube, for example.

A discreet hamburger icon allows you to display a vertical menu on the left, leaving plenty of room for photos.

The galleries to display your photos are elegant and can be password-protected.

Thanks to a filter, you can also expose your photos by grouping them into albums, with different layouts to choose from. A significant pro to facilitate your visitor's navigation.

Price of this theme: 59$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Bow

Bow is a minimalist and classy theme. It will be perfect to promote your photos in a professional-looking gallery.

Three different types of homepages are available:

  • Wallpaper image
  • Video in wallpaper
  • Slider

Once you enter the site, you will find a list of your galleries, and the images are located on the right, in shades of grey.

Le thème WordPress photo Bow

The menu (top right) is displayed in full screen to suggest you visit other pages (About, Blog and Contact). Remove the bar at the top of the demo to remove small display bugs 😉

Price of this theme: 59$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

PhotoMe

The theme PhotoMe is classified in the “extravagant themes” category, so many possibilities are available. So much that it's quite easy to get a little lost in it. But at least, you can't complain about not having enough choices.

And you'll see: the final rendering will be amazing. Yes, I insist, and I write it in capital letters: A-MA-ZING.

Le thème WP PhotoMe

For instance, I particularly like the Ken Burns effect, which makes the images move smoothly.

Last interesting points:

  • The protected galleries in which the customer can see its photos.
  • A customizer embed in the WordPress administration, to customize in real-time, as you wish (color, background, typography…).
  • And if you want to go further, integration with WooCommerce is available.

Price of this theme: 59$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Tography

Let's go back to minimalism with the theme Tography. A white wallpaper, a hamburger menu, a few icons and an image in the center: here is for the homepage.

Don't expect a lot of options, or you'll be disappointed. The available galleries are displayed on the homepage. You can navigate between them with the arrows on the keyboard.

If you like one of them, just click on it to reveal its content.

Note that navigation is done horizontally, so don't try too hard to scroll!

Tography, un thème WordPress minimaliste

Beyond private galleries and WooCommerce integration, this theme offers a before/after feature. It's ideal if you want to show your customers the result of your touch-ups!

Price of this theme: 49$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Photography

If you don't know how to organize your photo website, this theme will offer you a myriad of layout options. But watch out: you may get lost in it as easily.

Photography: a WordPress theme whose name says it all

But if you have already thought about it beforehand (which I recommend), maybe the structure you are looking for is there. So be patient and take a look at it 😉

With this theme, I particularly appreciated the option allowing you to apply custom colors and textures to your photos, and the possibility to display them on a map of the world. That's great, especially if you travel a lot.

Price of this theme: 69$ with 6 months of support.

Discover the theme See the demo

Vega

The WordPress Vega theme will delight those who want to control every aspect of design. Many styles of galleries, portfolios and blogs are available.

Le thème WordPress photo Vega

Of course, the author did not forget to include protected galleries and galleries where customers can choose the best shots.

Price of this theme: 59$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Ichiban

With the Ichiban theme, you won't have dozens of layouts to choose from. It is structured in two parts that can be found throughout the site (except for the gallery pages which are in full screen). It will make your life easier for you to set up.

The menu, accessible by clicking on a hamburger icon, is displayed in full screen on the left. Your image gallery is available on the right.

Ichiban, a WP photography theme

As for its functionalities, it is still honorable. The theme includes very well-done private galleries and a shop.

Price of this theme: $48 with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Almera

Almera offers a rather original structure among the photo themes, namely a kind of masonry gallery that scrolls horizontally.

The Almera theme and its horizontal photo gallery

However, you will not find any private galleries or shop integration. This theme is for photographers (professional or amateur) who just want to share their best photos. Speaking of which: the theme embraces many social network icons.

Price of this theme: 39$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Sirius

Sirius is an immersive WordPress photography theme. As soon as you arrive on the home page, the photos are displayed in full-screen. A slider with discrete arrows allows you to scroll through them.

Everything is done to give primacy to image at the expense of text.

It is barely noticeable that the menu, accessible via a hamburger icon on the left, can be deployed in a column.

The Sirius theme

I really appreciated the options offered to display your galleries: full-screen, in several columns, masonry, grid…

The portfolio has filters to sort your photos by category and the About and Contact pages are also creative (the contact form appears on a Google Map).

Price of this theme: 39$ with 6 months of support

Discover the theme See the demo

Exposure

Exposure is not a catch-all theme with a ton of features. On the front-end (the interface of your site visible to your visitors), at least.

It “only” has two types of homepages, for example, and does not really stand out for its creativity and originality. We're still on the classic.

Exposure is a sober theme

Let's say that it is mainly characterized by its back-end options (on WordPress administration). And this is pretty good. You can customize your theme directly from the interface of your WordPress by changing the colors, font, menu…

An integrated drag-and-drop Page Builder, with many modules, allows you to create a structure that suits your image.

I also personally liked the full-screen slider that you see as soon as you arrive on the homepage.

Finally, the Contact page is quite nice with its contact form integrated on a Google Map.

Price of this theme: 49$

Discover the theme See the demo

Milo

Let's finish with an ultra-minimalist theme. The first impression that emerges from this template is the blank. We notice a lot of white but it's not bad, sometimes: it helps you highlight your photos. And that's the point, isn't it?

Milo

One of Milo's original features is its navigation through the photos in galleries: the large sliders that appear when the mouse hovers over them makes it so simple!

Of course, you can have several galleries – but unfortunately, none of them can be private.

A good point to finish: the theme is WooCommerce compatible. If you wish, you can sell your photos directly on your website.

Price of this theme: $100 with 12 months of support and access to 3 other themes

Discover the theme See the demo

Conclusion

I hope this article on WordPress photography themes helped you see more clearly, and gives you the motivation to get started. (I did everything I could to make it happen.)

Creating your own website can be complicated, especially if you've never done it before. But with clear ideas, good tools, and a little time, it is quite possible.

Now it's up to you to do some work!

Is there a theme that caught your eye? Are you using one that I didn't mention? Tell me everything in the comments.

And if you think this article may be useful to others, feel free to share it on social networks.