Administrivia: 11 March 2023

Adding in more header images. You may find a new set peeking through now and again when you reload. We’re done with B&G.

Sometimes when I’m doing these, I have to trash one. Usually it is because I got Rory centered just fine but then the way the site displays is cutting off too much of his head or face. I mean, I can sit here and look at his below-the-neck too, but it’s just a bit weird not having his face in. What’s also weird is that that’s not how the images turn out when I edit them, and when I upload them they look fine in the behind-the-scenes too, but when you go to the actual front page they are occasionally fucked up. But I haven’t had too many of those be really bad. I’ve had several be shorter up top than they were supposed to be, but they still look okay, so I leave them in.

If you look at the site with a horizontal screen you may have noticed the side margins being solid-color. Sometimes you get that as an effect in photo-displaying software: for instance, whatever software Facebook uses. Not in this case. It’s part of the image file. When I uploaded these screenshots as header photos originally, I edited them to be 1200 x 2000 pixels because that’s the size the theme calls for in a header photo and it wasn’t too far off from the screenshot’s actual size. When I went back in to center Rory, I opened a particular header photo, selected all, cut the image completely out, and then pasted it into a separate 1200 x 1200 file as a new layer. The whole image is still there while the layers are separate, so you can just shift it around until Rory is in the middle and then flatten the whole image file, which “trims” the 1200 x 1200 bit. And from there, I pick a color, then go back to the 1200 x 2000 canvas and bucket it in. Then select-all and cut the 1200 x 1200 and put it over there too. Flatten. Save. Re-upload to blog header. Done.

It makes things look more cohesive. I know people are still going to look at the site with a horizontal screen now and again; I certainly do. And if they’re looking at the whole image, if it were just white, it’d be blinding and if it were black every time, it wouldn’t be as interesting. Using a color from the image makes it match its “frame” and it mixes things up a bit for variety that doesn’t clash.

Just one of those little design things. I don’t have formal training, not since high school, but I know what I like.

In the past I had made an effort to make the font and link colors match a certain color scheme. I don’t know how many of you remember that. After I introduced this theme, I sort of lost interest in that. (The most I did was go in and stop it transforming the font to uppercase in certain design elements. I hate that. How fucking hard is it to write something in all caps if that’s what you want to do?) But now I think we get plenty color from the header photos and so I don’t think I will be bothering with link colors again. Doesn’t really matter.

There’s this online course called WP Rockstar that’s supposed to help you get a start in making a living at WordPress. It’s pricey, if you’re my broke ass, but sometimes I think I ought to do that. It’s one thing I’ve consistently done over the last nearly thirty years. I got bored quickly with America Online’s native website editor in the mid-90s and started learning HTML myself. Eventually I got around to using Greymatter, the direct predecessor to WordPress (if you look up WP’s history they will tell you GM was one of their inspirations). That one was a lot easier to edit behind the scenes than WordPress is, and I soon had my very own site layout with my own logo and colors and everything. It was rad. Do kids still say “rad”? No? Good. Fuck off. That’s Gen X’s word. Nyah.

Unless you’re Glaswegian. Then it’s “Magic!”

Ever seen Rory say “Magic!” It’s adorable.

Anyway. So I look for free shit to teach me things. Codecademy looks promising. I’m not gonna write a Rory app or anything, but maybe at some point I could work out my own theme here. You never know.