A Drupal 6 theme that took more than two years to build

That's a freaking lot of time, really, but as anybody who does web development for a living knows it's sometimes difficult to find the time for your own projects when you are working in clients' gigs. Besides, I wanted to theme my site according to a very specific set of rules that kept changing over time, common problem, I know.

First, I decided to move Ventanazul from a simple blog format to a more niche community site, a site for people working in professional web development, that meant I had to enable account registrations, forget about vBulletin and rethink about the quality of new content and the profile of users to approve (users have to be manually approved and all comments are moderated).

Defining the goals and information architecture of the new Ventanazul took a few months while I gathered ideas from a lot of sources, like sites I enjoyed and projects I was working on. That led me, after many hours with Gimp, to the final mockups of the new design. In the meantime Drupal 6 was out and I had to invest time on learning a few new tricks.

It was the perfect timing as I started working on projects for a couple of clients that required moving to Drupal 6 and using my upgraded theming skills. For Ventanazul's redesign I used many of the new nice features of Drupal, I found the preprocess functions very helpful for separating comments and their form from node content, they usually come as a whole in the $content variable of the page.tpl.php template.

The theme can be considered as a 0.9 version and I know there may be a few small bugs around that I'll fix on the road but I wanted to release and start getting feedback as soon as possible, well, two years is not really soon but you know what I mean. I have a small set of additional features cooking for a future release and may come with some other ideas. As should be the norm in 2009 the markup was built thinking in modern web browsers that respect web standards so I didn't waste time on Internet Explorer 6 bugs or horrible hacks.

Ventanazul - Chancho de madera

And why Woodpig?

The pig dude in the picture was a gift from Yesenia, my wife, during the days I was designing the new theme in Gimp. It's a small pig made of wood with flexible arms and legs that sits over my desktop everyday. I put him in different positions every morning and use it as a model for shooting with the SLR. I had a few shots of him lying around so I used one for the home mockup and after a while realized that the new site would be as cool looking and flexible as my porcine friend and decided the new Ventanazul theme would be called Woodpig.

That's it, enjoy the site, comment and share your web development knowledge and wit with the warm community registering today.

Oh, and it's absolutely forbidden to make jokes about the pig, he's got a very bad temper.

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Nice new theme, Alexis - me

Nice new theme, Alexis - me encanta, especialmente el espacio en la pagina casa, para un "feature" imagen. Enhorabuena, hombre.

Any chance I'll be seeing you at DrupalCon DC? Or are you coming to Sydney Australia soon? Jejeje. And abrazos to your family in Lima.

Hey Jeremy! Thanks for your

Hey Jeremy! Thanks for your comments, I'll tell the pig you liked his theme :)

Everybody at home is doing great and I don't plan leaving Peru for a good part of 2009, we have a very special project cooking but I'm sure we'll meet somewhere in the world quite soon, I miss traveling.

Cheers!

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