After spending a couple of weeks trying out Drupal I decided to give up on it as too complex and moved on to Joomla.  Joomla may not have as many advanced modules as Drupal but it has plenty for my needs and you can get a site going much more quickly.

If you want to see what you can do with Joomla, take a look at their site showcase to get an idea -

There's also plenty of free getting started documentation as well as books on Joomla.


After getting a basic install up and running with the sample site, I starting looking around for templates that I liked. There are plenty of free ones out there and I installed and tried out a few.  Also tried some I found on Bittorrent.  In the end, I settled on templates from JoomlArt, I bought their one year subscription with unlimited access to templates for $70.

For the subscription, you also get reasonably good support via the forums -  One final reason to get the subscription is that the Userguides on how to install and customize each template are only accessible in the forum for each template.

I'm currently fighting some IE presentation issues using their Labra template with the iPod like CoverFlow feature (I've run into IE presentation problems with other templates - IE 7 & 8 are fussy) but everything looks good in Firefox or Chrome.  I've tried a couple of ideas from the Labra forum to fix this issue but they aren't working for me and I'm getting no response on the forum after three days so I may move on to something else (can't go without a solution that works for IE users).

The site I'm working on is While there's lots to like about JoomlArt, I found a slideshow module that I like better than the two JoomlArt slideshow modules.  The slideshow module I'm using on the Paintings page is Slimbox2 -