An online portfolio website is an excellent way for business owners and freelancers to get their work, skills and client cases in front of potential customers. The word portfolio simply means a bag for carrying loose papers, however, it has many meanings depending on how it is used. In relation to web pages, a portfolio design is typically defined by a popular and often used grid style layout of images of same size. Clicking on a portfolio item often takes visitors to a special page designed to present a client case, a project or a product. For website owners portfolio page templates therefore can be used to present business critical content in a great looking fashion and in a way that is easy for the users to navigate. Portfolio website typically also include special designs for contact pages, team member presentation and so on.
Most bloggers will probably agree that WordPress is an excellent choice for blogging. In addition, when it comes to showing off creative work by designers, photographers etc. it turns out that WordPress has great potential as well. Today many creative professionals have realized this and they use WordPress as the engine for building an online reputation. The ease of use of WordPress, the high number of portfolio style themes and plugins available for building a professional portfolio website makes the decision easy.
However online portfolios come in many different visual styles and with different features so it is a good idea to be clear on the requirements before choosing a theme to set up a portfolio website. I will provide some tips and guidance in this article along with an updated collection of the best WordPress portfolio themes I have been able to find. Keep in mind though, that there are many ways to set up an online portfolio. Besides WordPress I believe Tumblr is an interesting platform to check out and there are also some cool tumblr themes for portfolio sites you can use to get set up fast. In addition, it is an option for creative individuals to use popular portfolio communities like DeviantArt and Bhance to set up a showroom online.
This article provides a list of magnificent free and premium portfolio themes for WordPress and I am sure it will help you get started. Most of the really good themes for building a WordPress portfolio are not free, but certainly you can find great themes that won’t cost anything. Still the premium portfolio themes sometimes comes with features that makes your life a bit easier, like regular updates and support. This allows you to focus on your business and creating a cool portfolio. If you need to add portfolio capabilities to an existing theme, I recommend you look for some portfolio or gallery plugins.
Keep in mind that WordPress themes with responsive layouts are really hot right now because they allow your visitors to see a perfect website/portfolio no matter what device they use. Responsive themes use media queries to deliver layouts that match smartphones, tablets etc. Many of the themes we selected for this article are fully responsive. This post is continuously updated with more useful WordPress portfolio themes and all links are checked!
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links (at no extra cost to you). I recommend that you do your own independent research before purchasing any product or service. This article is not a guideline, a recommendation or endorsement of specific products.
Now to the 2014 Portfolio Theme Collection
I have categorized this article into three sections as some may be looking for free themes while others go for premium only. If you think that a great portfolio is missing let me know by leaving a comment. If you are new to portfolios make sure to check out the tips for choosing a WordPress portfolio theme at the end of this post.
- Premium WordPress Portfolio Themes
- Free WordPress Themes for online Portfolios
- Tips for choosing a website portfolio template
Buying a premium portfolio website templates for building a WordPress based online portfolio is typically the safe direction go go in. You get support and updates for the theme and this can turn out to be essential in the building phase, but even more in the future. Keep in mind thought that there are no guaranties. Theme vendors may not be around forever, but compared to a free theme you are typically safe.
Flexible Responsive WordPress Portfolio Theme – MORE INFO
This cool portfolio template is form ElegantThemes. Flexible offers a clean, modern minimalistic portfolio and business style design for WordPress websites. The theme comes with a filterable , Ajax powered multi media gallery that can be sorted into different categories without reloading the page. It also has color control panel in which you can customize the color of your fonts and backgrounds. It is also has a font customizer and supports all major browsers.
Fuse – Responsive Portfolio – MORE INFO
With fuse you get a responsive portfolio website template with a design that meet the highest standards. It is modern, clean and professional. The theme includes the Pixelgrade shortcode plugin and I am sure you will love this when you build up your pages.
Digital – MORE INFO
With Digital you get a minimalistic portfolio design with a left side navigation style. The theme is well suited for creative designers with a need for sharing work and skills online. You get two portfolio templates, one that includes all portfolio items at once and one that supports infinite scroll. There is both a featured slideshow feature and a portfolio slider.
Origin WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
This is another interesting portfolio website template that uses images to tell a story. It is very responsive that it will look and work great on mobile devices. It also maximizes the WordPress theme customizer in which it gives you full control over the color of your theme. This is really a great theme of choice for persons who would like to put up a photography or portfolio site.
Mozzy – MORE INFO
Mozzy is a cretive premium portfolio theme for WordPress with an advanced portfolio feature. The theme both support fixed width and full width slider on the front page and includes portfolio items in a nice filterable grid layout.
Reveal WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
Reveal is a great responsive portfolio website template for WordPress with a minimalistic design and a cool filterable portfolio grid. Theme theme include a shortcode slider, page templates and more.
Stardust – Multi-Purpose Portfolio WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
Stardust is a multi-purpose theme for WordPress with portfolio focus. It offers a large array of useful features you can apply into your creative process. You have more than 30 portfolio styles available, cool parallax effects, animated page transitions and more. The theme have a clean and simple responsive design that will wow your visitors.
dePosito Portfolio Theme – MORE INFO
With dePosito from ThemeShift you get a elegant and minimalistic responsive portfolio WordPress theme. The theme is based on FrameShift, a new modern WordPress options framefork, and this makes setting up on a professional portfolio website a breeze. Ready to show off your work!
Gridster – MORE INFO
Gridster is a left-handed navigation and sidebar theme with a portfolio or gallery style focus. The theme is cool for photographers, designers and other creative professionals with a need for showing off skills online.
ExploraSky OnePage/MultiPage Retina-Ready Responsive Theme – MORE INFO
The single page website style is trendy and works really well for simple and creative online portfolios. Explora is a single page portfolio template and it comes with a very clean design. In this theme you get a page builder to help you set up advanced page layouts without coding. There are also many useful shortcodes you can use to add dynamic content where ever you like on your page and posts.
Ilaria WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
With Ilaria you get a creative clean WordPress portfolio style theme. The theme is designed to be customized to your needs with many features and shortcodes. Ilaria is a good match for freelancers, agencies, designers and creative people.
Grand Grid – MORE INFO
With Grand Grid you can create a unique portfolio grid layout to showcase your work and skills. The theme have many other cool features such as the premium LayerSlider, tons of shortcodes, custom post formats and more.
Filtered WordPress Portfolio Template – MORE INFO
With Filtered you get a pure WordPress portfolio solution with a clean and elegant design. The theme is fully responsive and prepared for making mobile visitors happy. The portfolio function is filterable and looks great.
Nero Responsive Portfolio Photography Theme – MORE INFO
Nero is a powerful portfolio theme with 10 useful portfolio templates included with filterable content. You can also create galleries and password protect them. The theme is responsive and the image grids adapt well to small screens. There is a skin manage er 11 skins to choose from. It is possible to add music to the home page and pages of the site. The theme also support full screen youtube and vimeo videos. You will find many useful building blocks to make your site unique such as shortcodes, custom post types and more.
Timedrop – A WordPress Portfolio Theme – MORE INFO
TimeDrop is a multi-purpose theme with a great design for building online portfolios. The theme includes a page builder with 9 page building blocks that will give you a lot of flexibility and power to set up unique pages. The theme is responsive, have tons of shortcodes, custom widgets, slider function and more.
Mineral – Responsive Multi-Purpose WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
Mineral comes with a light and clean design that will allow full focus to the posrtfolio items. Theme theme have several portfolio options and will be a great pick for photographers, artists, designers and the like. You will find 5 post formats in this theme also to make variations and adjust the look and feel over time to your needs. To feature content there are 2 images sliders in the theme.
Folo | Premium Responsive Portfolio Theme – MORE INFO
Folo is as simple and minimal as you can get. It is a clean and simple theme for creating responsive WordPress portfolio websites.
ideo – Minimalistic WordPress Portfolio Theme – MORE INFO
Portfolios with minimal design makes great space for the content and often visitors find them easier to navigate. Ideo have been designed with this in mind and takes it is a clean and light theme with a masonry grid for the portfolio layout. Ideo comes with a page builder and this gives you great flexibility to layout your own page layouts in a snap. You get two header styles, 6 footer layouts, 3 sliders, lots of custom post types and other nice features. You even get WooCommerce support and will be able to set up a professional online shop as part of the portfolio website.
Capiton – MORE INFO
Capiton is a very clean and minimalistic designed portfolio style theme for WordPress. The theme have 4 styles includes for either fixed or wide layout and light or dark look and feel.
Showy – Bold & Flat Portfolio – MORE INFO
Showy is a flat, clean and simple portfolio theme for WordPress. It is mobile ready and comes with a cool filterable portfolio solution. You can choose from 3 portfolio styles/layouts.
Riviera – Portfolio WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
This portfolio theme have a cool set of options for making customizations of the design and page layouts. First of all it comes with a pleasant design that will fit well for a creative portfolio website. However, the page builder and the WP theme customizer can help you make adjustments quite easily to make your site look just as you want. There is a meaty shortcode collection packed into the theme as well and this gives you even more building blocks to choose from. Getting visitors to contact you is important and no worries – with Riviera you get a form builder solution to get the form set up in no time. There are also 2 slider included to help you feature your content.
Shot – Full Ajax Responsive WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
With Shot you get a photo intensive and very creative portfolio style WordPress theme. It is a perfect match for photographers and designer that work on a online showroom. There are 3 backgrounds styles – image, video and slider. There is a HTML5 music player included. Also in Shot you will find 5 page templates, map options for the contact page and more.
Punch – Responsive Portfolio WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
Another premium WordPress theme that has impressive animations suitable in showcasing your awesome work. This theme has superfast framework, SEO optimized, fully responsive that it adapts to any mobile devices, has shortcode generator, 400+ Google fonts and extensive documentation. Aslo included in this package is a Demo content and demo theme options for easy customization.
BIR – Responsive Creative WordPress Theme – MORE INFO
Bir is a dark and elegant WordPress theme for building classic and creative portfolio websites. The theme offers a filterable portfolio function, responsive design, 8 color schemes, text slider and more.
Foxy Portfolio – MORE INFO
Foxy is another portfolio theme with a clean and simple design. The featured image and recent work slider for the front page are cool featured with a great design. The drag and drop home page builder makes it simple to create your own website layout using this theme. The portfolio features in Foxy support the option to password protect portfolios. Theme theme includes support for custom sidebars and have useful custom widgets in the package.
Choosing to go for a free portfolio website template is a good solution for startups with a low budget. There are many good free options available and if you are an OK with taking care of technical issues and minor updates, you are often safe. Major updated to WordPress is common though and sometimes break free themes.
Spun – MORE INFO
Spun is a very minimalistic portfolio theme with a cool image grid using rounded images. The theme is responsive and lightweight.
Launch – MORE INFO
Launch is a sweet little theme for the personal blogger who likes to blog in style. Provides support for your own self-hosted video, audio, images, galleries, asides, links, quotes and of course good old standard posts.
FontFolio – MORE INFO
FontFolio is a cool free theme designed especially for building a creative online portfolio. The grid and masonry based layout used in this theme will make sure you can display your work the cool way. The theme works with latest versions of WordPress.
Photo Theme Responsive – MORE INFO
Another minimalistic free theme for WordPress that have been specially designed for photographers with a need for displaying their work online. It is a fully responsive theme that it works well on mobile and tablets.
Foto WordPress Portfolio Template – MORE INFO
With Foto you get a clean and simple theme for setting up an online portfolio. You can set up custom background and menus and use the sticky post slider. The theme have easy to use theme settings. Included in Fot oyou find a full-width template.
Before you choose a theme for your WordPress portfolio I recommend you review my advice below:
- Business continuity: Look for recent updates, support, ratings and comments: While I try, my best to keep this article up to date there is always a risk that themes are suddenly not supported any more.
- Know your requirements: Start with making a list of portfolio features your solution will need to meet – and maybe make a simple sketch. This will make your life much easier once you start comparing the many available portfolio themes.
- In addition, you will not risk choosing a theme or plugin that will not work in the end. Read on to learn about what features you may not know that you need.
- Portfolio features in theme or plugin: When looking for a theme to set up a portfolio using WordPress there are actually two options. You can look for WordPress themes with build in portfolio page templates. This is a great option if you are able to find a theme with the right look and feel. If you have found a great simple WordPress theme that fits your business needs perfectly but it lacks on the portfolio capabilities you can often find plugins that easily extend WordPress with the ability to easily build and maintain galleries and portfolios.
- One or multiple portfolios and flexibility regarding placement? Some themes for building WordPress portfolios have limitations regarding where portfolios can be placed and how many can be added. This may be OK depending on your needs, but the portfolio layout is a powerful design element that can be inserted successfully on many pages, including the front page of a website. Portfolio solutions that allow developers to insert the portfolios using WordPress shortcodes is typically recommended for advanced users.
- Portfolio navigation options. Some portfolios use light boxes when the images are clicked, some take the user to a portfolio page, and some allow the developer to configure exactly what should be the action, e.g. opening an external link. Depending on what function the portfolio section have within your WordPress site this may be one of the most important things to get right.
- Responsive mobile ready portfolio or not: if you take mobile users serious you should consider to build a responsive portfolio. You see, portfolios are really hard to navigate in a small screen because they are typically set up with a fixed width. A responsive grid makes the portfolio columns adapt to the screen size.
- What data sources will be needed to fill the portfolio? Some solutions require portfolio elements to be added as custom post types where text and photos are added. Others can pull in regular posts and pages from WordPress and it can be really useful. Finally, there are solutions that can create portfolio pages from external data sources.
- Do you have requirements for filtering and categorization? Many portfolios have filtering by tag built in making it simple for users to focus on elements that are important and relevant to them.
Portfolio layouts have many shapes. While most portfolio themes for WordPress have several column layouts included (1,2,3,4 etc. columns) it is also important to consider if you need flexibility related to showing / hiding text titles, descriptions etc.