I just changed the theme of my blog to Atahualpa. I liked it when I first saw it because of the ability to have a rotating roster of random heading images. It’s really cool because it is so configurable that I don’t have to edit the theme files themselves.
The theme comes with some nice images. However, as a photo-phile, I wanted to use my own photos. The challenging part was finding images that I could crop to match the long proportions of the heading images. Once I figured out what I needed to do, I was able to generate more pictures without taking so much time on each photo.
Here are the steps that I have figured out. I used Picasa and Dreamweaver.
- In Picasa, look for landscape photos that had the most interesting elements in the horizontal axis.
- Select the desired image, File > Save a Copy
- Edit the copy, which will have the same filename with -1 appended (skip steps 2 & 3 if you don’t care about saving the original)
- Click on I’m Feeling Lucky to see if it improves the look of the picture. If not, undo
- Click on Crop and use the Manual option to select a long rectangle that contains the desired content
- Click on Preview to see the dimensions of the crop area. This might take experimentation since the size of photos vary but I found that I got good results if the height is no more than twice the max height set for the header image in the theme configurations. This is dependent on the width of the original and the size to which it will be reduced, if at all.
- Click Apply once satisfied with the crop area.
- File > Export Picture to Folder
- Select the desired Resize setting if the original is not the right size
- Click Export
- A Windows Explorer window should open that contains the new file
- In the local copy of the blog, copy or move the file to the folder: wp-content\themes\atahualpa\images\header
- In Dreamweaver, select the new file and upload
I hope that helps. It seems complicated with so many steps but after a while it gets easy to do.