Relaunching the relaunch

Washer woman rock formation in Canyonlands National Park

If you are one of the two people that have visited this site over the past month or so, you have seen a mess. I have been wanting to refresh the site and move away from the Avada theme (more on that later). I think I am finally on the right path in terms of design and the way forward. The site is nowhere near complete as I started from scratch. I did have some of my posts, but the images may be missing for a while.

Leaving Avada … uh, not so fast

I have been evaluating builders and themes over the past two years, and while there are plenty of options, they just require too much work. As of today (August 6, 2022), I am back to Avada. Why? Speed of work, accessibility, and features. There are a lot of other builders that do a lot of nice things and often without the bloat, but they have a learning curve that I am not willing to pursue at this time. On top of that, many of the others are not accessible out of the box, which in this day and age, should be a minimum requirement. If you are looking for recommendations for something else, here is my short list:

  • Gutenberg
    • GeneratePress and GenerateBlocks
    • Blocksy
    • Cwicly
  • Builders (low code/no code)
    • Elementor
    • Bricks Builder
    • Breakdance
  • Builders (code required)
    • Bricks Builder
    • Oxygen

I have looked at many other builders and themes, but this is my focus list. If I were new to WordPress, Gutenberg is the only way to go, as anything else is really creating technical debt. Breakdance, which is from the makers of Oxygen, is a new product — still in beta. It shows a lot of promise, but it is not Gutenberg-centric. Bricks is on here twice because a lot can be done without code, but it does give you the freedom to do more.

Avada does allow the use of Gutenberg, and it is all I use for posts so that in the future, only pages and templates will have to be reworked.

Not my design – imitation intended to be the sincerest form of flattery

In addition to choosing the underlying themes and plugins, I have been trying to come up with a good design. Unfortunately, my creative juices have been stagnant of late. Fortunately, in my research for builders and themes, I encountered several designs that stuck with me. All of the designs that I gravitated toward were dark and many used yellow as a primary color. As a Nikon shooter, this has a special place for me. The two most recent sites that I encountered that are heavily emulated here are The Admin Bar — a great WordPress resource — and Dirk Beckers’ website. The latter has some really interesting features that I am going to use here and on my Avada Website Builder Tips website — in particular, the link index.

Just some photos from our recent visit from Jade. The morning images Later in the day Time for Trick or Treat

A retro style camera has stolen my photographer's heart.

a group of presidents carved into the side of a mountain

Revisiting some older photos from Mt. Rushmore using a new Lightroom preset called Blvck..