I upgraded the default theme to WordPress’s Twenty Twelve. As you can see it’s pretty neat and clean. I’ve made a couple of customizations, mainly adding my photo of the black rhinoceros enclosure from the Denver Zoo (an “artificial habitat” if I ever saw one) into the banner, and a matching background color. More will come later, I hope.
The new default theme, Twenty Twelve, uses an open source web font, Open Sans. I was not familiar with this until now, but Google hosts a whole collection of open source fonts for the web. You can link your web page to Google’s web font API the same way you would link it to an external style sheet. The font available to the user whether or not he has it installed on his computer, because it’s delivered over the web. I like using serif fonts for the main body text, so I’m trying Droid Serif, the companion to Open Sans, by the same designer.
While each iteration of WordPress’s default theme has an increasingly minimalist appearance, the complexity of the templates increase proportionally as well, making them very difficult to customize. Every little element has a style attribute so changing one element doesn’t necessarily change the style of other similar elements that ought to match. The more I customize the more I have to hunt around for little styling inconsistencies. A good example is the variety of link colors in different parts of the website. It often frustrates my ambitions for making the site look more original. WordPress is definitely a platform for geeks.