🏗️ Build with Ghost: First steps for creating a custom theme
Unleash your creativity with Issue #5. Learn to install Node and Ghost for custom themes, stay ahead with 2023's graphic design trends, and explore top tools with Liz Rowe. Plus, new Ghost features, tips, and resources to optimize your content.
Issue #5 is alive 🤖 Here are the beep boops for this issue:
- Our new tutorials on installing Node and Ghost locally set you up perfectly to start building a custom theme
- Up your design game by checking out the graphic design trends for 2023
- Find out some of the awesome tools for building cool stuff with Data Scientist and YouTuber, Liz Rowe, in our featured site of the month
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Build a strong foundation with these two new tutorials
It's Node all the way down
That's why, whether you're planning to create a custom Ghost theme or a killer app, Node is essential.*
In our new tutorial, we show you how to install Node on macOS, Windows, and Linux. Once installed, it's a cinch to run Ghost locally or use any of the other 3 million+ packages available.
*Web development is notoriously fluid, and, recently, other runtimes like Deno and Bun have challenged Node's default status. While these other runtimes are important to be aware of and offer significant improvements, Node isn't going anywhere anytime soon.
Install Ghost locally
After installing Node, you'll likely want to do something with it. It'd be like getting new trainers and not going for a run. We've got you covered with our new tutorial on installing Ghost locally.
A local installation of Ghost is ideal for theme development because it offers you instant feedback. Local installation is also a great way to take Ghost for a test run before going live 🏃
Just shipped 🚢
We've been busy.
- Share important news, offers, and more by adding an announcement bar to your Ghost site
- Keep it 💯 by including signup terms in Portal
- Bask in your data by exporting post analytics
- Invite readers to explore your content by including your latest posts in newsletters
- Add personalized subscription details to the bottom of your newsletter, so your readers have easy access to their membership info
Ideas and tools 🛠️
- Tables can be the perfect tool to display data to your readers. In this video, Kevin Powell explains how to make sure those tables look good on every screen
- From Anti-Branding to Vivid Minimalism, check out the graphic design trends expected for 2023
- Did you know that modals and dialogs are now natively available in HTML? Web dev simplified offers an introduction to these game-changing elements
It's just Liz
If you're looking for a partner on your coding journey, we can't think of anyone more perfect than Liz Rowe, a mechanical engineer and YouTuber on Ghost (of course!). When she's — impressively — not working as a Data Science Manager at Intel, Liz offers guidance on using low-code software to get things done. And, coincidentally, she will soon be releasing her own video on using Node for beginners.
In Liz's content, the focus on maximizing productivity carries through in her theme choice: the awesome Abi Abdaal theme by Super Themes Co. Reflecting on this choice, Liz has this advice for newcomers to Ghost:
The best advice I could give is to not get hung up on the perfect website, the perfect theme or the perfect brand colors. Make a "good enough" website on Ghost and start showcasing your work right away.
We couldn't agree more. Too often, creators get distracted by their theme, when they should be focusing on creating content. The most beautiful site in the world isn't going to be very impressive if there are only two posts that are three years old.
That being said, Liz is still contemplating building her own custom theme in the future, and thinks it would be a "super fun project." We agree here, too, and can't help but point out a loophole: if you're a creator making content about building Ghost themes, then you can have your cake and eat it, too 😉
Many sites featured in the Build with Ghost newsletter are discovered through our creator network, Ghost Explore. It’s a way for creators and readers alike to discover their favorite new publications. Anyone running a Ghost site can add themselves to Explore to be featured throughout the wider Ghost ecosystem. If you’d like to be featured in this newsletter, add your site to Explore and reply to this email.
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