Essential Keystrokes is…

where I share my favorite tips, tools, reviews and commentary on web design, marketing, blogging, new media and related topics. For more about this site and the voice behind it, check out my About page.


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Archive for WordPress


Essential Keystrokes Gets Flexxed

Posted by: Char | Comments (3)

flexx-your-websiteI have been talking about a redesign for this site for some time, partially because as a designer, I was getting tired of my old design and because the theme I had used as its base was starting to show its age everytime I did a WordPress upgrade (probably two clicks from self-destruction!)

The big question was what to use for this version. I opted not to create a custom theme from scratch because frankly, I don’t have time to reinvent a wheel that already works great. There are so many great free and premium themes readily available to use as a base, starting from scratch really didn’t make sense. Read More→

Categories : Web Design, WordPress
Comments (3)

Project Files: Spotlight on Revolution

Posted by: Char | Comments (17)

In August 2007 Brian Gardner revolutionized the WordPress theme space by launching the first of a family of ultra-customizable, cleanly coded and innovative themes aptly named Revolution. Shortly after customizing my first Revolution theme, it quickly became my first choice when considering themes for projects.

The following are a few of the site designs/customizations I have done in the past six months using Revolution as the base:

From top to bottom, the sites are:

While the original Revolution theme took the traditional WordPress site to the next level, the Revolution Magazine theme and its variants kicked things up a few more notches. The magazine style theme allows more content to be displayed on a site’s home page, giving web publishers the ability to control what content stays in front of the visitor and for how long. The theme is also perfect for adding video, audio, advertising, and interactive features to the site.

Brian has recently released Revolution2 – taking Revolution from a premium, for purchase theme to a completely free, open source series of themes with specific functionalities based on the type of site you need to create. Additional Revolution2 features and support are now available via subscription, including access to the support forums and a listing of Brian’s recommended designers (I am one of them).

So, yes, I have been a little busy (which explains the less frequent posting here), but I really enjoy taking client ideas and bringing them to life using Word Press and more often than not, the Revolution theme. If you are ready to take your site to a new level, I’d love to help you get it there. You may contact me at cpolanosky [at] gmail [dot] com for availability and a quote.

Categories : Project Files, WordPress
Comments (17)

As WordPress continues to gain popularity and more designers realize its potential, services like PSD to WordPress are becoming more popular.

Not all designers have the skills to take a PSD or other graphical design of a site and and code it into a clean, quick loading, multiple browser supported WordPress theme. And sometimes those who do have the capability, just get overloaded with work (raises hand) and it is more efficient to outsource the coding. But that isn’t all, eight more reasons you may want to consider using PSD to WordPress for your next project include:

1. Learning Curve – You know what you want your design to look like but don’t have the time to learn the ins and outs of WordPress coding to get it done.

2. You Want QualityPSD to WordPress has a public front and a proven track record (I like the work they did for Credit Card Matcher). They know WordPress inside out. They have a great team that have years of experience in WordPress that are very well known for releasing quality free themes. And you are not hiring some random programmer who may disappear without notice.

3. You Need Support – PSD to WordPress offers 30 days support to sort out any problems with your theme or any WordPress related issues. Emails are replied to very promptly, even on weekends.

4. What If You Don’t Like It – If there is anything wrong, or you aren’t happy with the product, and PSD to WordPress can’t fix it, they will give you your money back.

5. Simple Ordering – I love the interactive order form on their site. Need your code in a day, then slide the bar to the left – it automatically adjusts the price to factor in the fee for a rush job. Add ons are clearly marked and there are no surprises in the fees. Additionally, there is no need to explain things in great detail, just send the send over the PSD file and they do the rest.

6. Need Transparency – If you are outsourcing a job, you can even request that no additional coder credits are left in the code – making the process totally transparent to your client. Although, if you are like me, I always let clients know up front if I am going to have any part of their project outsourced and why (time, lower cost to them, added value, etc)

7. Quick Turnarounds – I get requests all the time for projects that are needed on a very short time frame. Due to my own work load I cannot always fulfill these requests, however PSD to WordPress has a team of experts working. They can get your theme back to you in a day if needed.

8. Value Pricing – Since you provide the design, and PSD to WordPress does what they do best – code – they can offer their services at a very affordable rate. Their basic package includes the 4 WordPress template files (Blog / Single Post / Category / Single Page).

If you are designer wanting to maximize the power of your design by using the WordPress platform or a freelancer who needs to outsource some of you overflow, you should definitely look into using PSD to WordPress.  They even have a special offer for Essential Keystrokes readers – 10% off your first order – just mention this site in the comments section of the order form.

Categories : WordPress
Comments (8)


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