We've moved from Wordpress to Ghost. Let's go through the details.

If you've visited this site in the recent past you've probably noticed some fairly major changes to how things look in the past week.

We have migrated the Square Pixel Photography site from running on Wordpress software to running on Ghost. This was quite a big change and didn't come lightly - but it is certainly for the best and it will allow us to concentrate more on producing high quality content and less on maintaining the site.

What was wrong with Wordpress?

Well, nothing technically.

Wordpress runs over a third of the sites on the internet. You can create anything from a simple, single-page site to a massive online publishing platform. If you can dream it, you can create it with Wordpress (almost anyway).

And therein lies the problem.

For Square Pixel Photography, Wordpress does too much. There is no way I was going to use an off-the shelf theme (good luck finding on that 'just works!') and in order to include all of the article, SEO, search, etc features needed to run this site a multitude of plugins and templates were required.

I'm no stranger to a code editor and I actually really enjoy coding - but that, plus all of the backend maintenance required to keep Wordpress happy and secure was taking so much time that I wasn't able to spend time actually writing articles.

So I needed to find something a little more simple.

Enter Ghost...

Ghost?

Scary name, awesome blogging platform! For all of the details you can head over to https://ghost.org

Ghost: Turn your audience into a business
The world’s most popular modern publishing platform for creating a new media platform. Used by Apple, SkyNews, Buffer, OpenAI, and thousands more.
t'

Ghost is a content management system in the same vein as Wordpress - but it has stripped out all of the complexity and allows the administrator (me) to focus more on the content of the site.

And the back-end editor is awesome. I can write in Markdown to make writing articles much faster than in Wordpress' Gutenberg editor.

Ghost also has an awesome templating engine that uses {{handlebars}}. Also, the templates actually look like the demo content when you install a third-party design (take that Wordpress!).

Hosting

When using Wordpress I hosted the site with the Wordpress only managed host: Closte. I would highly recommend Closte to anyone who runs a Wordpress site and can find their way around some of the more technical aspects of hosting (or can follow simple wiki instructions).

As Closte only hosts Wordpress sites I had to find a new solution when moving to the Ghost platform.

I first set things up with Ghost(pro). It is a service run by the Ghost team and is fully managed. It just works (and works well). I'd recommend this option to anyone running Ghost and doesn't want to deal with anything server related.

In the end I opted for a self-hosted solution running on DigitalOcean servers. It took a little more setup than the Ghost(pro) option, but is cheaper and I have full control over the server.

If you're looking to host any sort of site you can click on the bookmark below to get youself $100 credit to use in the first 60 days. I also get a $25 credit on my account which will help support the Square Pixel Photography site.

DigitalOcean – The developer cloud
Helping millions of developers easily build, test, manage, and scale applications of any size – faster than ever before.

What's Next?

Well, for the next little while I want to concentrate on creating some awesome content for people to read. I have many half-finished articles that I want to get published.

I will also be exploring the Ghost platform a little more to set the site up a little better. There will probably be a few changes here and there over the next little while. Hopefully I don't break too much as I go!

I will also eventually want to create my own Ghost theme to make the site a little more customised and user friendly. I've currently modified a purchased theme a little to get started. It works well, but there are a few things I'd like to change and add.

Support Us

If you're looking for a way to support the Square Pixel Photography site you can do so by signing up to a monthly or yearly subscription. At just AU$2 a month it will help pay for server and other costs associated with hosting a site.

If a recurring fee is too much for you then you can also 'buy me a coffee' at the link below. Doing so can be a one-off payment and I would greatly appreciate it!

A subscription or payment isn't possible for everyone, so if you don't have the means to support us then that is totally fine. You can still sign up for a free account and continue to use the site with no payment. We're happy to have you here!