Introducing Sidewinder, a photo portfolio theme for WordPress

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Sidewinder photo theme for WordPress
Sidewinder photo theme for WordPress

We are seriously pumped to announce our latest photo theme, Sidewinder, into the wild.  Sidewinder is a horizontal side-scrolling photo theme that resizes with the browser as it expands and contracts.  It is ideal for photographers looking for a holistic photo portfolio and blogging platform.  Sidewinder is available for paid subscribers here at Graph Paper Press.

Main Features

  • Theme Options – No coding knowledge?  No problem!  Upload a logo, change homepage designs from a dynamic display of your Posts or Galleries to a static display of up to ten hand-picked photos.
  • Black and White Design Options – As Michael Jackson sings, “It’s black, it’s white, whoo!” Change between a black or white design on the theme options page.
  • Shortcode – Sidewinder’s shortcode makes adding column layouts, boxes and buttons to your Posts and Pages dead simple. There is no need to modifying CSS, HTML or PHP. Read Shortcode Documentation »
  • Widget Options – How many Widgets you want, fella?  Choose the number of footer widgets you want on the theme options page
  • Gallery Post Type – Forget about forcing photo galleries into WordPress’ default Post and Page logic.  Sidewinder adds a new Gallery post type for adding and organizing photo galleries.
  • Font API – Personalize the theme by choosing a custom font that fits your style.  Choose from any one of the available Google Fonts by adding it directly on the theme options page.
  • iPhone Ready – Simply put, this theme freaking rocks on the iPhone.  Flip your phone horizontally and let your images take over the iPhone screen real estate.  The side-to-side navigation is clean and intuitive.

Video Tours

Design Philosophy

We’ve wanted to build side-scrolling theme for a couple years now.  The challenge was two fold:  First, we needed to nail the user-experience and make the interaction intuitive for visitors.  Second, we had to make it work technically (duh) on a variety of browsers and mobile devices using jQuery javascript effects combined with CSS, PHP, and HTML to bend the theme design to our will.  After three months under development and three weeks undergoing testing and tweaking, the theme is ready for public consumption.

We have been incredibly picky along the way:  Sidewinder is actually the second horizontally scrolling theme that we’ve developed.  We couched the first attempt, despite user requesting otherwise.  In late 2010, Chandra revisited our initial side-scrolling theme concept, but this time, it would be built as a child theme for Base, our theme framework.  We think Sidewinder has been worth the wait.

We hope you are as happy with the outcome as we are.  We look forward seeing what you create with Sidewinder!

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Thad is the founder of Graph Paper Press. Previously, he produced online multimedia and documentary projects for USA Today including the inauguration of President Barack Obama and many others. He lives in Brooklyn, NY with his wife Abby.

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60 thoughts on “Introducing Sidewinder, a photo portfolio theme for WordPress”

  1. Looks great- quick question though: is it possible to still have a normal blog in this theme? It’s not in the demo, I’m curious what it would look like- if it would work.

    1. Hi Falleri,

      Yes, you can have a page that lists all Blog posts. I’ll add a page to the demo that shows that. 😉

      1. Great, can’t see it yet so I guess you still have to add it (or emptying my browser cache didn’t work) but I look forward to checking it out! Thanks for the quick reply!

        Another question; I’m assuming it’s possible to make subpages (dropdown from Categories I, for example- commissioned work, dropdown menu to architecture, business etc), but maybe that’s not as logical as I think it would be, because you’re using another structure for these galleries than simple pages; is it possible to do this? I want to showcase both autonomous works and commissioned works, and want to keep the navigation clean and logical..

        1. Hi Falleri,

          Here is an example Blog Page:

          Yes, the navigation supports multi-level drop-down menus.

          The Gallery post type also has built in “Taxonomy” support. This allows you to assign specific galleries to specific “Collections” – which are essentially a custom taxonomy that we added to the Gallery post type. You can also insert Galleries on posts and pages, if you prefer that method too.

          Hope that helps!

  2. Sidewinder looks AMAZING! I think I actually might give it a try, but I wanted to ask something before I click the button 😛

    Would I lose any major components switching from Modularity to Base/Sidewinder? And the other question…does the gallery only operate manually on the home page? Thx

    P.S. I’ve been dying to try google fonts and this gives me the perfect excuse to! Great job guys 🙂

    1. Hi Jason,

      Glad you like it 😉

      Sidewinder doesn’t contain the Modularity homepage apps. That said, we are releasing Widget Plugins that essentially allow you to add Welcome Messages, Sliders, etc., to any Base or Base Child theme. Some of these plugins are already available:

      That said, the simplicity of Sidewinder is what makes it successful, I think. Adding a bunch of stuff to the homepage might clutter the design.

      The Galleries are operated manually for now, but we might add an auto-scroll option in the future.

      Hope that helps!

      1. Well Thad…I think I’m gonna give it a shot! It gives me the excuse to get another domain going, something I’ve been contemplating for a while. But the sidewinder theme seems perfect for a portfolio only showcase. I’ll let you know how it goes!

        Thanks again! I <3 GPP

  3. Excellent! Thank you so much for the quick response! I’ve been dying to get my hands on a new theme/ design, and have been searching for so long.. this theme isn’t what I had in mind, but it’s beautiful, and I’m almost ready to give up hope on the original idea (because obviously it’s not going to happen, unless I am going for a full custom job..). I’ll wait a little to be sure it’s what I want (not 100% ready to give up on the original desires..) but I’m glad to know it will have the options I need!

  4. I really like this new theme. From a documentary photographer perspective, the use if horizontal scrolling has become quite ‘hot’. Something it would make it more usable would be the possibility to conceive this galleries as ‘projects’ and thus the first image would actually be the text of the project and then to the right it would start with the images. I know I can create the text as an image, but it’s not ideal. Is there a way to achieve this with the current offering? Thanks.

    1. Glad you like it Martin. The slides can only contain images, so, your best bet is to create these text slides as images.

    1. Sidewinder was created to showcase the Slider feature. It’s not possible to disable it and replace it with Photo Galleria. i would recommend just using Base if you want to use Photo Galleria for slideshows.

  5. Hi – great theme, and I’m looking to sign up to this in place of a flash template. One thing I’d like to see, if possible – when clicking on a photo in the blog or galleries, is there a way to make the photo ‘pop out’ in a larger window, dimming the rest of the screen, with a close button to exit the photo popup and return to the site? Also, it it possible to disable larger views of photos (so clicking a blog photo does nothing)? Thanks.

  6. I just have to say, you’ve hit it out of the park with this theme, guys. I’ve been holding off on re-doing my portfolio site to wait for the release of Sidewinder and now that I’ve been working with it for a couple of days, putting my new site together, I am just so, so pleased with it. Thank you all for the great work you do.

  7. I’ts possible to turn-off the view-bar to force users click the left and right arrows? I prefer a lot this way mate.

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  9. Hi could someone please tell me how to install sidewinder into the base theme? i have successfully activated base – but sidewinder continually says that the parent theme is not supporting it. do i need to download sidewinder to a specific location?

    1. You need to download both Base and Sidewinder from your members page. Base is only available for paid subscribers. Upload them into your themes folder in WordPress. Activate Sidewinder.

      1. Yes I am a paid subscriber and I have successfully uploaded base. the issue is that after i upload sidewinder, it is listed under “Broken Themes” with the error message “Stylesheet is missing, template is missing”, or sometimes the message changes to “parent theme missing” even though the parent theme IS NOT MISSING. I saw on another forum that when people were having this issue it was the result of an extra folder in the parent folder that caused the child theme to break. Do you have any idea what this may be or what folder to take out of base?

        1. I had the same problem here, then I figured out that my base directory had the “base-sidewinder” name. Just renamed it to “base”, activate sidewinder theme and everything works.

  10. so I’m using Sidewinder, but I can’t find out how to make my photos scroll sideways, kinda the whole point of this theme. I basically have my photos in a downward-scrolling pages. what code must I insert to make my galleries all fancy?

  11. How do you add photo to a gallery from the media library and via a new upload each time? I have no problem creating the gallery or deleting photos from it but how do you add a photo from the media library after a gallery has been created?

    1. Sorry, typo and I can’t edit. How do you add photo to a gallery from the media library and NOT via a new upload each time? I have no problem creating the gallery or deleting photos from it but how do you add a photo from the media library after a gallery has been created? Thanks!

      1. On the Media Library page, there is a column that says “Attached to”. If an image isn’t attached to a post, you can attach it to a post there.

  12. Hi – sidewinder is cool, no,doubt; am shopping around to put a major international author on responsive webpresence. Problem is that Sidewinder doesn’t work on my iPad: the info buttons are covered by too large image ghost frames… Or how ever you express this problem. Please sort this out so I can consider Sidewinder for our project.

    1. HI Krausskopf, i too test the sidewinder theme from my iPad and i have faced the same problem. On the Home page on the first picture >> when i click on the “Link icon” which is on Right- bottom Corner >> Nothing Happens. The same icon takes me to the fashion page when i tried on the Desktop.. Any comments from Admin.. Please update us on this issue..

  13. I am appreciating Sidewinder but have two problems.  First, the gallery container seems to be stuck at a fixed width of 960px and can’t be adjusted to wide the way the pages do.  And second, I can’t figure out how to place pictures directly in the slideshow mode within a page where it does seem possible to create the wide screen layout.

  14. I’m planning to subscribe for this theme and how can i add my own logo at TOP- LEFT corner of the page.. Please give me your suggestion. I don’t want to get stuck with this after i subscribe for the theme..

  15. Hi Admin, Once i subscribe to SideWinder theme, Will i have an option to eliminate the “Arrow icons” at the bottom of the Home page which is taking to different pages. Please update me on this.. Thank you.

  16. I am using Sidewinder for half a year now and I´m very happy with it.
    Yesterday I started a second installation of this theme with the same settings and CustomCSS – but I cannot get the Thumbnail-Slider working. It only slides the above images AFTER I clicked and dragged the mouse on the slider, but not during dragging … any suggestions?
    Problem can be found here:

    1.  That must have been a bug with newer version of jQuery. If I remember correctly, you will need to open sidewinder/library/inc/core-js.php and around the end change the attr to prop. It should look like this.

      jQuery(“#mainholder”).prop({scrollLeft: (ui.value * holdermulti) });

      1. YOU MADE MY DAY! 🙂
        Thank you very much! That was the thing I was looking for. Great!

        Folks, that´s what I call “real service”! Go ahead and buy one of these great themes – it is worth every single Cent!

  17. Hello, does this theme work on mobile devices and ipads etc? About to purchase it but wanted to check first

  18. not really sure how, but my scrolling is no longer working. any ideas why it is being such a pain? my slideshow wont work at all.

  19. Hi I’ve update Sidewinder to the latest version and my pages have taken on Blog form, as in, my images are thumbnail versions listed in a column. How do I get the scroll bar back and set my images across the page again. (My pages should be like the “Category” ones in the demo)

  20. I’ll tell you what is really stupid about this template. The post font color by default is GRAY (???) on a WHITE background? Jeez comon! It should be black and then if someone wants to ruin everyone’s eyes, they can change it to gray.

  21. Nice theme i am using, i am facing one problem that i cant see my thumb in category & Archive page can you give me solution.


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