Espiedby Automattic


Espied is a portfolio theme for designers, photographers, and artists. It’s great for showing off your image-oriented projects to the world. 

Your free WordPress photography theme should set your work apart from the online crowd. In addition to showcasing your creative passions, this theme, designed with photographers and artists in mind, makes it easy to organize and archive your images and designs.

With Espied, you’ll have a free WordPress theme that organizes your creative work in an elegant, yet orderly,  grid-based layout. Showcase a key image for your homepage that allows visitors and potential customers to click through and learn more about the unique personality that infuses your work.


Espied takes advantage of the Portfolio feature on, offering unique layouts and organization for your portfolio projects. Learn how to enable and set up this exciting Portfolio feature.


People love full-size images of your work, so make sure the images you include are at least 1272px wide. Espied displays these images at full width on larger screens.



Featured images

Featured Images are important in Espied. You can choose one of three aspect ratios, landscape (4:3), portrait (3:4), and square (1:1) in the Customizer.

Regardless of which ratio you choose, featured images work best when they are at least 480px wide. The optimal image sizes for each ratio are.

  • Landscape: at least 480 x 360 pixels
  • Portrait: at least 480 x 640 pixels
  • Square: at least 480 x 480 pixels

The featured images appear in several places, including archive pages, portfolio page template, and portfolio shortcodes, so, don’t forget to add one!

Portfolio Shortcodes

shortcodeOnce you create a project, you can use the portfolio shortcode to display it anywhere on your site. Adding the [portfolio] shortcode to any post or page will insert your project.

Learn more about working with the portfolio shortcode.

Portfolio Page Template

This template will display your portfolio and allow you to set your portfolio as your site’s front page.

When you first activate Espied, you’ll see your posts in a traditional blog format. If you’d like to use the portfolio page template as the front page of your site, as the demo site does, it’s simple to configure:

  1. Create or edit a page, and assign it to the Portfolio Page Template from the Page Attributes module.
  2. Go to Customize → Static Front Page and set “Front page displays” to “A static page”.
  3. Select the page you just assigned the Portfolio Page Template to as “Front page” and set another page as the “Posts page” to display your blog posts.

By default, page title and content will appear. You can hide them if you prefer by going to Customize → Portfolio and check “Hide title and content on Portfolio Page Template” option.


Where is the portfolio archive page?

Along with the Portfolio Page Template, your projects will be displayed on portfolio archive pages.

Let’s say you have a site at:

The URL of the Portfolio archive page will be:

If you’d like to add your portfolio archive page to your a Custom Menu, create a custom link using the portfolio archive URL.

You can customize the portfolio archive page by changing the title, adding some content, and uploading a featured image. To do so, go to Customize → Portfolio.

Social Links

Espied allows you to display links to your social media profiles, like Twitter and Facebook, with icons.


Set up a social links menu

  1. Create a new Custom Menu, and assign it to the Social Links Menu location.
  2. Add links to each of your social services using the Links panel.
  3. Icons for your social links will automatically appear if it’s available.

Available icons

Linking to any of the following sites will automatically display its icon in your menu.

  • CodePen
  • Digg
  • Dribbble
  • Dropbox
  • Facebook
  • Flickr
  • GitHub
  • Google+
  • Instagram
  • LinkedIn
  • Email (mailto: links)
  • Pinterest
  • Pocket
  • Polldaddy
  • Reddit
  • RSS Feed (urls with /feed/)
  • StumbleUpon
  • Tumblr
  • Twitter
  • Vimeo
  • WordPress
  • YouTube


Espied offers a widget area that appears in the fly-out side panel along with menu and social links menu.


As a Blog Theme

With beautiful typography, Espied is also great as a blog theme. Montserrat, a geometric typeface, is great for headings. Open Sans is a humanist typeface with a large number of glyphs that’s perfect for body text. Line length is optimized at 60-80 characters per line to be comfortable to read.


Pull quotes can be enhanced on wider screens by adding the alignleft or alignright class to a blockquote. The quote will float into the margin accordingly. It’s a subtle visual treatment, yet it makes posts look more dynamic, and helps draw attention to your key points. See an example of pull quotes in action.

It also supports several Post Formats — aside, image, video, quote, link, and gallery.

Featured images in blog posts work best when they are at least 840px wide.

Customize even more

You can add a full-width Custom Header Image to make Espied even more personalized. It also ships with four color palettes to choose from.


Quick Specs (all measurements in pixels):

  1. The main column width is 552.
  2. The sidebar width is 552.
  3. Featured Images for blog posts are 840 wide by unlimited height
  4. Featured Images for portfolio projects are 480 wide by 360 (landscape), 640 (portrait), and 480(square) height
  5. Custom header image should be at least 1600 in width.

This theme is available for download to be used on your WordPress self-hosted installation.

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