Best WordPress Themes for Photographers
If you’re using WordPress for your photography website, there’s a good chance that you’ll have searched for ‘WordPress themes for photographers’ in the past.
You’d soon discover that there are literally hundreds of WordPress themes, and many websites devoted to telling you which themes are apparently the best to showcase your photography work.
To be honest, all the information can be a bit overwhelming, leaving you with decision paralysis! If only there was one site which sorted the wheat from the chaff and gave you only the most relevant WordPress themes for photographers…
Well you’re in luck! Below you’ll find my concise selection of the best WordPress themes for photographers out of the hundreds available, just perfect for photographers like us.
WordPress Themes for Photographers in 2020
For those who are starting a photography website for the first time, you’ll first need website hosting and a copy of WordPress (freely available from here) to be able to install your first WordPress theme.
Don’t worry though – it’s not hard! Just follow my 3 step guide on how to start a photography blog, then come back here when you’re ready to choose a theme.
And for those of you contemplating SquareSpace or one of the other all-in-one websites over WordPress, you’ll actually save money in the long run with WordPress and your own hosting, so just follow this guide to get started.
Free WordPress Themes vs Premium WordPress Themes
There are many free WordPress themes out there which can be tempting for photographers, but I’d advise you to invest a little in a premium (paid) theme. Paid themes always have better features, and the level of support is also much better, and often essential for first time users of WordPress.
The 5 premium themes I’ve selected below each have hundreds of positive reviews, showing both excellent functionality and support. Don’t be tempted to spend hours trawling through the hundreds of WordPress themes available in 2020 – limit your choices to the ones below.
OK, let’s take a closer look at 5 of the best WordPress Themes for Photographers, as recommended by me – an avid WordPress user and photographer – and hundreds of other happy users.
5 Best WordPress Theme for Photographers
1. Fiji 2 | Minimalist Photography Theme
Price: Approx. $279 – (Click here for most recent price)
Yes, the price, you can’t ignore it. Have a look at my detailed Flothemes review to see how these guys justify that part of the equation.
This ain’t cheap for a photographer or videographer website template, but if it looks amazing, works well, is covered by professional support and was built with photographers in mind, it’s worth the money.
The ultimate goal of a photography site is to get you noticed and book more clients, so this one’s definitely a good investment.
I’ve managed to secure a massive 25% discount, just for the readers of this article. (This is currently the biggest Flothemes discount available on web.)
The reason why this WordPress theme is at the top of my list is twofold. First off, it simply looks great, as simple as that.
You may try and resist the temptation to switch to Flothemes, but sooner or later you’ll end up following the other cool wedding photographers who did it!
The design looks super clean, and minimal, and yet it’s super versatile too. It comes with 4 unique style kits (think of it as 4 pre-made designs which you can easily switch between).
When you get bored of the look of your site, one click is all it takes to try out a different style, using all your existing content – this really is amazing.
The second reason why I’m recommending this WordPress theme to every photographer I meet is that I’m actually using Flothemes on my own wedding photography site. It’s a different theme designed by the same team called Crowd 2, and it provides pretty much the same functionality.
Any long term reader of Shotkit will know that I wholeheartedly recommend products that I use myself, and this is the case with Flothemes.
[UPDATE: I’m currently experimenting with a 3rd party custom design on my own site]
Fiji 2 is packed with multiple features that might be handy for photographers. Here are a few:
- Responsive layout which looks great on both mobile and desktop
- Powerful page builder based on blocks, for creating page layouts
- SEO friendly (if you use few plugins and know what you are doing)
- Multiple home page, portfolio and gallery page designs, ready out of the box + 4 style kits
- Supports video integrations
- Social media support and multiple ways to display your Instagram feed
- Step by step documentation & video tutorials + dedicated support
- Built-in contact forms, free & paid plugins exclusive for Flothemes users, etc.
Of course, Flothemes might be a bit over the budget you’ve planned for your website, but if their designs can help us book more clients, it’s worth the investment. This is why they are on the top of my list.
2. Photography | Responsive Photography Theme
Price: Approx. $59 – (Click here for most recent price)
Don’t be put off by the weird English on this photography theme’s homepage – Photography | Responsive Photography Theme is without a doubt one of the best WordPress themes for photographers available in 2020.
Here’s an example of 12 different designs you can give your photography site with just a click of the ‘preview’ button:
As you can see above, the Photography | Responsive Photography Theme comprises a wide range of very different designs, and this is just a sample of those available!
This means that with a tiny investment in website hosting (I recommend these guys), plus 50-ish bucks for the Photography | Responsive Photography Theme, you’ll have enough website designs to last you your life as a photographer!
SquareSpace and similar services are great for some photographers, but a good premium WordPress theme such as this one combined with this affordable hosting really is a smarter investment in the long term. WordPress also offers far more flexibility.
Other neat features of Photography | Responsive Photography Theme specific to photographers include:
- Password protected photo proofing for your clients which allows them to approve or reject images within the gallery
- Drag and Drop content builder
- Multiple portfolio designs to show off your best work
- Infinite scroll for displaying large amounts of images without loading everything all at once
- Multiple menu layouts
- Google map embedded contact page
- Fully responsive web design for mobile users
- Fast support
The Photography | Responsive Photography Theme, also includes $34 worth of premium plugins – Revolution Slider and iLightBox. One thing to note is that after a year, if you want to continue using these plugins, you may have to pay again to register them – personally, I don’t use either of them so this wasn’t relevant to me.
All in all, if you don’t want to waste time reading about the other WordPress themes for photographers in this post, I recommend you just get this great value website hosting, follow this guide to install WordPress in 3 minutes, then click the button below to get this flexible WordPress theme.
3. Simplicity by Imagely
Price: Approx. $49 – (Click here for most recent price)
If I hadn’t found the aforementioned Photography WordPress theme, I would have purchased this next theme for sure.
Full width, fully responsive websites for photographers are nothing new. We all want to showcase our greatest work in the biggest way possible, and often a full width image on the homepage is the best way to do this.
There are a great many WordPress themes for photographers offering full width image support on the homepage, but the vast majority of them feature menus, buttons, or other content that distracts from the power of the full-width image.
With the Simplicity WordPress theme, we’ve finally found a full width homepage which is truly minimalistic.
Aside from your welcome text or logo and an optional sub heading, all that Simplicity shows to a website visitor is the symbol for a menu, i.e. 3 lines one above the other, also called the hamburger icon! Clicking or tapping this results in your chosen menu gliding into view.
Everything about the design and layout of Simplicity is very ‘Apple’, in that only the bare minimum is on display until called for.
The images you choose to show on your homepage are displayed in a slick slideshow. However tempting it is to show off lots of your proudest images, our preference would be one static image, or at most two or three slider images, which will improve the page load time for SEO and general user experience in general. All images should be run through JPEGMini (reviewed here), or similar image optimizer.
Delving further into this WordPress theme you’ll find multiple display options for your blog posts, including the popular ‘masonry’ layout, which arranges your latest blog thumbnails and text snippets into a brick wall-like design.
Resizing the window causes the content to reshuffle and resize to suit the new window space.
Galleries all support full width slideshows, with a neat feature which allows you to include ecommerce in your photography site, i.e. the ability to sell your photos direct to your website visitors.
The best part about Simplicity is that with your one-time payment for the WordPress theme, you’ll also receive 10 other premium themes, all part of a package by a company called Imagely.
To sum up, Simplicity may not have all the bells and whistles of some of the other WordPress themes for photographers in this list, but therein lies its charm. By doing away with functionality that some may consider surplus to our needs, you’re left with a simple, functional and attractive website design that focuses the visitor’s attention on your photos.
One thing that should be mentioned about Imagely’s selection of WordPress themes for photographers is that they require something called the Genesis Framework to function (price: $59.95). Think of Genesis as a theme that you require to install the Imagely theme.
Luckily the Imagely support is excellent and they’ll hold your hand through the initial set up stages of purchasing Simplicity and Genesis, all the way through to getting your photography website online.
It’s a good idea to opt for Imagely hosting if you’re running an Imagely WordPress theme, just to make sure everything plays nicely together. Click the button below to find out more.
4. Tripod – Professional WordPress Photography Theme
Price: Approx. $59 – (Click here for most recent price)
This WordPress theme for photographers piqued my interest initially since it was the only theme I came across with hundreds of positive reviews, but a really boring sales page!
Tripod offers a few different theme designs to display your photos and blog text in several stylish ways, but it’s the ‘fixed’ option that most photogaphers like the best (pictured in the middle below), perhaps because it is well balanced from a visual point of view.
This is the kind of clean, image-centric website that’s been popular with professional photographers for some years now, with blog thumbnail images or portfolio images arranged in a neat grid on the homepage.
There’s subtle HTML5 styling elements scattered here and there too, such as bouncing arrows when certain menu items are hovered over, and images that move inside the thumbnails. This eye candy thankfully doesn’t distract from the simplicity of the layout, but instead adds a small touch of professionalism to the site as a whole.
The HTML5 seems to be coded well, in that the theme isn’t slowed down unnecessarily. As with all photography sites that are full of images, you’ll want to invest in good hosting to load them all quickly. Bluehost is an affordable first option – I’d recommend choosing their best value plan (click here to see the latest pricing), then upgrading to one of their faster plans when ready.
The ‘slider featured image + gridded thumbnail’ layout may be available as custom options in other themes, but it’s nice to see it as a well-thought-out standard build here in Tripod.
One nice feature to have on your website as a working photographer is an availability calendar, and the one included with the Tripod theme is simple and responsive (resizes to fit your window size, perfect for mobiles and tablets).
By blocking out times of the year where you’re on holiday, or simply days when you’d like a rest, the calendar can appear to be full of work – something that can make you look quite in demand as a photographer!
One small touch that I really like is the inclusion of a ‘like’ button, which is specific to the Tripod theme. Rather than being connected to Facebook or any other social platform, the heart logo in Tripod can be clicked to register a user’s appreciation of your post.
Those used to using the official ‘Like’ button from Facebook on their WordPress sites will know that the user experience isn’t as slick as it used to be, with the user being transported away from the site to register their like. Tripod‘s solution is slick and simple, allowing your posts to show their popularity without spoiling the visitor’s experience.
Galleries can be created in a number of different ways, with a horizontally-scrollable option that allows the visitor to click or use the cursor keys to navigate left and right. It’s just a small touch, but something that is different to all the vertically aligned blog posts and galleries out there.
The grid layout for your blog posts can also be customised to suit. Hovering over each image gives a preview of the blog post’s title, the number of likes, a date and some other information that can be customised.
One thing that you should pay attention to when using minimal WordPress themes for your photography business such as Tripod, is also including a few paragraphs of text to help along your SEO efforts. Fortunately, Tripod offers the use of widgets and drag-and-drop blocks, allowing you to insert your text on the homepage wherever you like.
With Tripod, it’s not a case of this premium WordPress theme doing something that the numerous other themes for photographers out there can’t do. Rather, it just does what it sets out to do very well.
The functionality in Tripod is admittedly rather limited, but if all you want is a simple, clean site to let your photos do the talking, this WordPress theme should definitely be on your shortlist.
5. Patti – Parallax One Page WordPress Theme
For those who don’t know, parallax in web design refers to background and foreground elements moving at different speeds to give the illusion of depth. On WordPress websites, this is often achieved when scrolling down a webpage with an image behind moving at a slower pace.
The reason photographers love Parallax web designs is simple – they look gorgeous. Whilst a WordPress theme like the previous one I recommended can look very flat to some, a parallax theme like Patti looks like something that costed thousands of dollars to design.
If you’re after a website theme that blows your visitors away, you should really consider one that uses Parallax well, like the Patti WordPress theme.
Other than parallax, Patti also offers the coveted ‘one-page’ design, whereby all the site’s most important menu elements appear on the homepage at different scrolling intervals.
There’s been a lot of debate in the web design industry as to whether these one-page designs actually appeal to the average visitor (rather than just other creatives). However, if you’re a photographer and your target client is other creatives, it may be worth considering a WordPress theme design that’s an aesthetic notch above others.
There are lots of beautiful HTML5 animation elements as you’d expect in Patti, with numbers ‘counting’ upwards as you scroll down to show how awesome you and your photography business has been recently!
Another slick feature in Patti is a kind of ‘content-reveal’. which allows you to hide your text behind various icons, visible only when clicked. For one-page web designs, it’s important that all the information doesn’t appear at once so your visitor isn’t overwhelmed, and so this way of delivering the info only when an icon is clicked is a useful one.
For a photographer, these icons could include the various benefits of hiring your services, such as fast turnaround (a lightning bolt), great customer service( a smiley), all day coverage (a clock), affordable pricing options (a dollar sign), and so on.
The most striking element of the Patti WordPress theme is without doubt the main slider, which takes up almost all the main homepage area. I say ‘almost’. because above it in a contrasting colour is a header element for your logo and menu elements.
The menu elements when clicked will either bring up a drop-down menu, take the user to another page, or scroll the user quickly to the relevant point on the home page below.
The slider image is controlled by the hugely popular Slider Revolution plugin which comes bundled with Patti (saving you $19).
Image Sliders are a love/hate web design element, but whether you go for something that moves or not, the text overlay which drops in when the image is loaded is visually striking and something you may like to use as a tool to direct your visitor’s attention.
You’ll have to visit the Patti sales page to see a demo of the text’s movement on the smain slider ider image, but watching it drop in then fly out is pretty impressive.
I can imagine this effect being used effectively over a photographer’s main portfolio image, stating ‘timeless story-telling’ or ‘Candid & Emotional’, or whatever your photography business’ catchphrase is!
As well as the Slider Revolution plugin, Patti also includes $79 worth of other premium ‘goodies’ – it’s arguable whether things like Visual Composer and Templatera Addon will be useful to you, but regardless, it’s nice to have some other options to play around with once you’ve become comfortable with Patti‘s standard functionality.
Something to consider with these animation-heavy WordPress website themes is website load times. With Patti, when a user visits your homepage, they’ll be greeted by a spinning loading icon. Depending on the content of your site and the speed of your website host, the icon can stay there for a fraction of a second to a few seconds.
When the homepage is loaded, all the slick animation elements will be pre-loaded, meaning that there should be zero lag when the visitor is scrolling down your webpage.
As always, fast, stable website hosting is recommended. If your business is growing fast and you absolutely need the fastest hosting out there, you may want to splash some dollars on more expensive hosting, but starting out, I always recommend Bluehost since they’re so affordable and reliable. You can get a discount on Bluehost here.
Once you’ve got your hosting sorted, you’ll need to put aside a few minutes to install WordPress (which is free!), then your chosen theme. You can follow this step by step guide to building your first WordPress website if you’re not confident with any of this.
So, going back to the Patti WordPress theme for photographers, I recommend it for those of you who want to make an impact to your clients of professionalism in your photography services.
It’ll always be your images that should do the talking, but having slick animation and modern design elements such as those featured in Patti can be the icing on the cake and the ticket to your next big photography gig!
6. Azalea – A Fresh and Fashionable Photography Theme
Beautifully designed and filled to the brim with practical features, Azalea is the perfect choice for every photographer looking to enter the fray. Even though the tagline suggests the theme is intended for fashion photography businesses, in reality, you can use it for setting up any kind of photography-related website.
Azalea packs an impressive collection of 12 homepages, and the name of each page suggests what you can use it for. For instance, the Photo Studio Home is entirely dedicated to presenting your photo studio to the crowd. Not only can you upload your portfolio projects, but you also get to introduce your team, list the clients you’ve worked for, and include user testimonials. And we all know just how much everyone values other people’s reviews. There’s also the Parallax Home, which is a portfolio page that includes the beloved parallax effect. And this is just to name a few.
The theme’s well-though-out templates and features allow you to display your work in a number of captivating ways. In fact, Azalea comes with a collection of over 30 portfolio elements, so you get all you need to showcase your skillset. You get to decide on the number of columns you’ll display your photos in, choose between the masonry, pinterest, gallery, or standard layouts, and much more.
Each page is bursting with pastel colors. Everything looks aesthetically pleasing, but at the same time, the layouts are really simple. There are no distracting, superfluous elements. The entire focus is on your photography.
It goes without saying though that every single element is fully customizable, so you can alter colors, layouts, fonts, etc., and set them in a way that best reflects your brand.
What I especially liked about Azelia is its photography module. It includes the stock photography layouts, the proofing gallery, and the clients list. Photo proofing is a feature your clients will surely appreciate, especially since the pages where you upload their photos can be protected with a password.
As you create project showcases, you can also add descriptions next to each image, as well as insert some additional details, such as the name of the photographer who took the picture and when it was taken. There’s also the possibility of creating categories and tags for each project, which would make it easier for clients to browse them later on.
Another interesting thing I noticed is located on the Classic Portfolio page. As you hover over images, the name of the entire project shows up, along with the number of photographs that project features. I also enjoyed the possibility of ‘liking’ the project by clicking on a tiny heart, which also appears on hover.
This theme also includes a collection of premade inner page templates, which enable you to share your story, and also show in greater detail the way you work and how you organize shoots. This is important for potential clients, since, besides browsing your portfolio, they might want to get to know you better before deciding to book you.
It’s also worth mentioning Azalea’s interesting animation and hover effects, which are sure to make visitors rivet their eyes on your site. You also have the option of enabling the passepartout border around your website, which would make them appear more elegant.
Azalea includes $90 worth of premium plugins – the WPBakery Page Builder for WordPress and the Slider Revolution Responsive WordPress Plugin. The former is a drag-and-drop page builder, which lets you craft your site with ease, and the latter enables you to display your content in visually impressive ways.
Even though the theme is stacked full with practical and engaging elements, the content loads fast, without a glitch. It’s also worth noting that it’s fully responsive. Regardless of the device or screen size, the visitors might browse your website, it’ll look equally beautiful at all times.
With Azalea it truly is all about photography. Even though you may not be a pro or you lack coding knowledge, you can still make a beautiful website. In case you get stuck at some point, you can always contact their support team, which will assist you with any issue you may encounter.
7. Pixelgrade Fargo
Fargo is a photography WordPress theme made for artists who genuinely care about how they showcase their work.
From the navigation flow to the dynamic transitions, from how you can easily play with a wide range of content (text, video, multimedia), from portrait to landscape captures, Fargo packs everything into an authentic and appealing product.
Pixelgrade’s WordPress theme offers a cinematic experience due to some elegant animations that make this product stand out.
By immersing your visitors with the Zoom-In and Zoom-Out tweak, you can grab people’s attention in a way that feels both memorable and authentic. Everything starts to feel like in a good movie, where the director did a fantastic job of handling the dynamic nature of the frames.
If you want to present your work to the world in a way that feels in alignment with who you are as an artist, then Fargo can be your go-to option.
One of the stunning perks of this theme lies in Style Manager, a customization tool directly integrated in your Dashboard area that you can use it by yourself, no coding required.
Due to the friendly interface from where you can choose between predefined color and font palettes (or create your own), you can easily obtain visual coherence across the board. This way, you are harmonious in terms of branding and can make sure every piece fits the puzzle.
As an artist, you need to keep track of your cashflow and customers, so developing more revenue streams becomes a must-do. With Fargo’s integration with WooCommerce, the most popular e-commerce plugin within the industry, you can start creating your online store within minutes and sell your work.
I hope you enjoyed this review of the best WordPress themes for photographers.
For more amazing photography themes, you can also check out the article over at WPKlik, listing the top 20 photography portfolio WordPress themes. If you have any other recommendations, leave them in the comments below so we can all benefit.
As a final note, WordPress does have a slight learning curve, and each WordPress theme is slightly different, but when you’ve mastered the basics, you’ll find it very easy to use. Most photographers only need to upload photos and text to keep their blogs updated, and for this, WordPress is the perfect choice.
When it’s time to start experimenting, these premium WordPress themes all offer a good degree of customisation options, and the thousands of WordPress plugins (which are mostly available for free) will bring flexibility to your site that isn’t available elsewhere.
Disclaimer: All recommendations are impartial and based on user experience, with no bias to the products or the brand. The products in this post may contain affiliate links.
Usnea Lebendig is a travel and landscape photographer who loves trekking in the wilderness, exploring other cultures, and using photography for social activism.