New Look

Staying home means a little more time than usual to fiddle about. My blog had been giving me trouble for some time now: little things that did not work properly, the fact that I constantly had to log in, and log in yet again. I had to enter my password more often than when I go into my bank account.
But trying to fix anything at all on Word Press takes forever, and I couldn’t be bothered. Contacting a Happiness Engineer always seems harder than contacting the Pope. 

The tulips have arrived and I had some time to draw those too

Anyway, I came upon a forum where someone who was having a problem was told by WP support that his theme had expired. I had no idea that this could even happen (why??) but it dawned on me that mine might have the same issue and, sure enough, when I looked it up, there was a message saying ‘This theme has not been updated for two years.’ Gee, Thanks.
So I scrolled through the free themes, but of course that took ages. I found some nice ones on WP.org, which—surprise—did not exist on WP.com (yes, they are different). Then I wanted to read some reviews (people report the weirdest problems), and run the demos, which show you how your blog will look. That takes ages, too.

Tulips with some foraged wild garlic


I wanted something simple, without too many frills and bows. I finally chose a WP theme called Twenty Sixteen, which came out in 2016, but has been updated since. Let’s hope they continue doing so.
WP also advised me to back up the blog before doing anything, but just reading about how to do that gave me a headache. I discovered a good plugin which copies all your files and photos, and apparently is simple to install, then I found out that if I wanted to use a plugin I needed to upgrade to WP business plan. No thanks. So I just exported the files, which are now sitting in my Dropbox as zip files. No idea how to open them.
Moving on, I finally took the plunge and pushed the button, and I think it looks okay. There is the small matter that my featured image appears twice in each post (it’s being added before the heading). If anyone can tell me how to fix that, I’d be most grateful.
Let me know what you think!

Next day the tulips opened, so I had to draw them again

30 thoughts on “New Look”

    1. Yes, most likely. I believe a bunch of people work on the software, which explains the fact that things that used to work fine suddenly don’t. If it ain’t broke why fix it, I say. I find the new editor most confusing…

      Liked by 2 people

  1. It looks lovely and clean and very well suited to your beautiful paintings.
    I’ve had the same theme for years – thanks for the warning – but every time I look at other themes and try them out, I tend to go back to the original one as nothing I’ve seen is so much better that it would make all the faffing about worthwhile.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Read this on my phone’s WordPress app, so can’t comment about the theme. But I think I tried it myself back in 2017.
    Tulips are indeed lovely, both what you have drawn and the real ones. Take care of yourself and stay indoors 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My first theme expired and started acting wonky so I went through what you did trying new themes which took forever then finally deciding on one. The same one you have chosen. I hope they keep it updated! I don’t want to have to change anytime soon.
    WP changing their Editor makes me nervous enough with worrying about things not working right.

    The Tulips look lovely! Is that your regular home studio set up on the dining room table? Mine is a little corner well, a littlish spot of the kitchen counter. It’s a counter island where we eat most the time, but since it’s only the two of us I can take up two of the 4 spots and keep it set up most of the time. I’m not setting up on the dining room table because there’s carpet under it. I don’t want to spill my paint water, or brush on it. 🎨🖌

    Stay well!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. He’s, that’s our kitchen/dining table. Stone floor. But I only use water mediums, cannot be bothered with oil and turps and all the cleaning. I have another table against the wall, but I have a tendency to spread out when it’s just the two of us! Which it’s likely to be for some time 😊

      Liked by 2 people

      1. LOL! I hear you about spreading out! I do that too which is why I have two spots filled with my watercolor stuff. My corner on the kitchen island/counter is over a stone tile floor as well. Once in awhile I do paint with acrylics so it’s better to be over an easily washable floor.

        I just took a couple of snaps of my set up the other day to show a friend who is going to be downsizing her studio big time. She’s been to my house and seen it, but for a second I thought I should take some snaps so I did.

        I haven’t posted it anywhere to send you a link, but you’ve got me thinking about sharing it on IG.

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  4. I like the new theme, which seems to give your images (and thus your paintings) more space, without being too different from what you had before. There are some themes out there which seen unnecessarily complicated to navigate. I’ve had the same theme since I first started blogging about 7 years ago, and have never really been tempted to change, particularly as I don’t seem (touch wood) to have too many problems. I’m not seeing the featured image twice; the one above the heading is different from all the others in the post, so maybe you’ve fixed that? My theme defaults to the first image shown as the featured image unless you pick a specific one, which I generally don’t bother to do… I suppose I should have a look at what new themes are out there, now that I’ve seen how nice your blog looks!

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  5. I like the new look too. And your blog made me smile (although I could hear the frustration in your voice!) particularly “Contacting a Happiness Engineer always seems harder than contacting the Pope. ”

    Your new theme pops up on quite a few blogs I read, so maybe its popularity will keep it going. I changed my theme last year(?) and didn’t bother with backup, just crossed my fingers! It all worked okay. When I was setting up my now disbanded website I went with WP. I learnt that it is not actually owned by any one, but that lots of people have input. Quite a nice change from the behemoths of Google etc, but must make for some challenges.

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    1. Crossed my fingers too, and all ok so far 😊 In the free themes, most are specific for restaurants, or yoga teachers, or shops etc. Too busy for a blog, that’s why this one is popular I think. And yes, that’s how WP works, and if you actuallymanage to contact a Hapiness Engineer, they’re very helpful. I think I’ve done it once!

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  6. Oh Marina you’re making my head spin! Commiserations!! I can only imagine what lies ahead as my theme too, has expired. I can’t be bothered with all the fiddling around to get a new one. Surely WP can make it easier?? Anyway I like your new one and will keep it in mind if I’m forced to jump off the cliff.

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    1. If you like mine, at least it will save the hours of scrolling through them. Most of the free ones are specific to businesses etc, so too complicated for a blog. I still need to figure some things out, alas.

      Liked by 1 person

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