The panoramic image with muted color scheme is quite dramatic, but a lot space is wasted on the bottom half of the screen
One of the 86 themes you get as part of the ElegantThemes package, we found much to like about Vertex, but felt that it is just too minimal to justify buying the package for by itself. The overall look lacks a certain pizazz (although it is quite classy), and there is a distinct lack of features on show. However we liked the way projects are divided up into ‘Tiles’, and some elements, such as the picture tiles in the Portfolio, look excellent. All in all we think that you have the ElegantThemes package anyway, you may well find this theme perfect for certain projects, and as such it is a valuable addition to the whole.
Resident Designer’s Opinion
Looks-wise I’m afraid I find this theme somewhat drab and boring. There are flashes of more inspirational stuff – the image tiles in the Portfolio view are the best example, and the animated percentage bars on the Team page show what could be done if the little touches had been extended across the theme to make it a more dynamic and exciting proposition. As it stands, it does have a certain charm, but it lacks the liveliness I like to see to keep me interested in a design. I also find the lack of features rather limiting, and severely restricts the kind of websites this theme could be used for.
Clearly designed primarily with blogging and portfolio display in mind, this theme is somewhat feature-light outside of these areas. There is however a Team page, perfect for presenting bios of team or company members.
A nice effect is that as you scroll down the page to reach each new team member, the percentage bar displays animate, filling up the bar from left to right until the correct percentage mark is reached. It’s a simple effect, but quite eye-catching and if similar such effects had been used across the theme we would have been much more excited about it
Full Width presents just text across the whole of the main frame of the page. It could be useful for a company bio, Terms of Service, or other ‘sensible’ piece of text.
Other than that, the only templates are for a Login Page, and an Advanced Search.
Blogging is something this theme is clearly aimed at, and the Blog page nicely displays recent posts in a clear and fairly attractive way. The sidebar is minimal, but handles basic site navigation just fine. There are however no advanced features such as advert space or side text on offer.
Click on a Blog entry and you are taken to a ‘Blog Tile’. These have a panoramic image at the top (a feature that is consistent throughout the site), plenty of space to write text, and a comments section at the end, which is very handy. While lacking somewhat in features, everything needed here for a simple blog is present.
Portfolio and Gallery
The main Portfolio page displays images in an attractive tile format, with each tile darkening as you mouse over it.
When you click on picture tile you are taken to a ‘Project Tile’, which is page designed to display the picture alongside some explanatory text (and which also includes a tile view of the rest of your Portfolio, and a comments section).
There is only one Portfolio page as such, but the Image Gallery is somewhat similar in function.
- Perpetual Updates
- Responsive Design
- Theme Options
- Secure and Valid Code
- Page Template
- Complete Localization
- Browser Compatibility
- Theme Options
- Page Templates
As part of the ElegantThemes package, which gives you all 86 themes for just $39, it is hard to fault Vertex on price. By no means a bad theme, it is however very feature light when compared to other themes in the package (and not in our view as visually striking), and we would therefore see it more as a nice little bonus, rather than a major reason to pay the $39 package asking price. Still, seen as a bonus it is very nice, and we could see lots of uses for it as a secondary blog or artwork gallery website.
One man’s tasteful is another man’s drab, and for us Vertex’s muted color scheme edges a little too far in the wrong direction. It is also a very minimally featured theme, and is only really suitable for a very limited number of applications (blogging and displaying artwork springs to mind). That said, it does have a fair amount of style, and we like the idea of Blog Tiles, Image Tiles and Project Tiles as a way of approaching and organising your work. If you have the ElegantThemes pack and need a discrete template for a modest site (remember that it doesn’t allow anything too fancy), Vertex could just be a perfect choice.