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There have been many questions recently regarding how the random polaroid images in the Travelogue theme works, so I wanted to set the record straight.

Here’s the deal: the Travelogue theme was unfortunately not designed to be administered wholly from the WordPress Dashboard, and it requires a certain minimal level of computer expertise in order to use. I apologize to all users who are not familiar with their server’s folder structure, editing code, or the like, but let me say that you can definitely learn if you put your mind to it. Please search other resources as well, such as the WordPress Codex and the web to learn more about WordPress and other topics.

Question: Where is this “randimages” folder?

The randimages folder is located inside the travelogue theme folder. On a default WordPress installation, you will find this in wp/content/themes/travelogue/randimages. You cannot access this folder directly from the WordPress Dashboard, nor can you upload files to it from using the WordPress Media Uploader. Please use an FTP program to access your web host and upload files that way.

Question: How do I get my pictures to show up?

Stick them in the randimages folder. You cannot use images from a post’s gallery or from typical WordPress media uploads. Perhaps I might code this in the future, but professional obligations are keeping me away from it for the foreseeable future. Use an FTP application to connect to your web host, find the folder listed above, and put the images directly into that folder (not in any subfolders inside that folder).

Question: No images are showing up, but I know I have them in the right folder.

Some hosts don’t support the original image rotating script that it uses. Luckily, I’ve included two! 🙂 Here’s what you’ll need to do. Go into the theme’s folder (wp-content/themes/travelogue) and open the header.php file. Note that you can also do this from the WordPress Dashboard by going to Appearance > Editor and find the header.php file on the side. Go to line 39, which reads like this:

<a href="#"><img src="<?php bloginfo('template_directory'); ?>/randimages/rotator.php" width="202px" height="187px" alt="Polaroid Photo" /></a>

and add one letter to rotator.php to become rotatorm.php:

<a href="#"><img src="<?php bloginfo('template_directory'); ?>/randimages/rotatorm.php" width="202px" height="187px" alt="Polaroid Photo" /></a>

Return to your site and do a refresh and the images should start rotating in. If not, double check that your images are in the correct folder. If this still hasn’t solved it, go directly to the rotating script and see if it coughs up an image by going to {yourblogurl}/wp-content/themes/travelogue/randimages/rotator.php or rotatorm.php. An image should show up on the screen. If not, go back and check that everything is in order.

Question: How big should my images be?

I have forced the images to size to fit inside the polaroid frame, but this may distort your images if they are not of the same dimensions. You can fix this by resizing the images with an image editing application to be 202 pixels in width and 187 pixels in height. No image editing application on your computer? (There probably is, with all the pre-installed junk these days.) Try any of the following free online photo editors: Aviary, Photoshop.com, or Picnik. Then place the correctly sized photos into the randimages folder.

Question: Where is this mythical readme.txt file everyone is talking about?

You have to look in the theme’s folder, located at wp-content/themes/travelogue, in order to read it. If you installed the theme directly from the WordPress repository, then you’ll have to log in to your web host to look at it. If you downloaded then uploaded it to your host, then you should have it on your hard drive and should probably know how to find it. Basically everything that I’m writing in this post are also in the readme.txt file.

Phew! I hope that helps out those with questions! Again, sorry that the theme isn’t super advanced or ridiculously easy to use, but hey, it can’t help to learn a bit about web development, right? 🙂 Good luck to everyone, and if you still have questions, feel free to contact through the comments. Just make sure you’ve tried everything here and have looked around yourself to learn the necessary skills; you might surprise yourself and figure it out on your own! Carpe diem!

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First off; faboulous theme. Thank you so much for developing it. I am using your theme for a client’s site. We LOVE the overall look of the site but didn’t need some of the things that were displayed (like the post date and search form). I edited out what we didn’t need displayed; now we want to move the page text up, so that there is not quite so much white space between the header and the content. Can’t figure out where to do the edits without messing up the layout. Can you assist?

March 11, 2010 1:27 pm

Thanks Sandy, glad you like the theme. Unfortunately, what you’re looking to do would require you to do some pretty heavy modification. See this comment: http://www.podq.com/2009/06/new-travelogue-theme-available/comment-page-1/#comment-12958 for a previous conversation about this. It can be done, but would require heavy modification.

March 11, 2010 2:40 pm

Thanks for the help!

Everything had been working fine, but maybe the host changes some things on the server side or something… but I ran into the issue where the images did not show up, even though everything was in place.

I changed the polaroid path to the rotatorm.php and everything was happy again.


June 15, 2010 11:23 am

Loving Travelogue, but have a problem. I have added my images to the folder, and the first one shows up but they do not rotate. My header.php file already has the letter ‘m’ so I’m not sure what else to do?

July 5, 2010 1:19 pm

PS and when the polaroids refresh they still have the text saying ‘don’t forget to add your own images’. How can I get rid of that?

July 5, 2010 1:29 pm

Lozzy, it looks like you’ve got things working now, at least when I visit it. If you don’t want the “remember to add pictures” to show before your image loads, then you’ll need to edit the PSD that comes along with the theme. It will be in the folder of the theme, and if you can’t find that, then download it directly from the WP Theme Repository and you’ll find it in the zip.

July 10, 2010 12:34 pm

*LOVE* your theme! It is perfect for the project I started with my aging parents this year. I just did the update and got stumped when the polaroids reverted back to your default images. I couldn’t remember how I changed them before and thus I landed here. I am glad I did so I could thank you for this delightful theme and your generosity in sharing it. Keep up the great work!

September 3, 2010 6:51 pm

Hi Mate,
I love the theme but I do really want to get the rotator to work. The images are in the correct folder.The”m” is already in the script and I still get an image when I go to the URL as per instructions.BUT the images still refuse to rotate.
I am using latest version of WP on my own host (just Host).
Is there maybe a compatibility issue between my host and WP and Travelogue?

September 11, 2010 5:03 pm

Hi Joshua

I am having issues with the polaroids too an inserting my own images. Also removing the wording. Please assist, I have tried everything you have suggested but must be doing something wrong
Thanks in anticipation of a response

September 12, 2010 5:10 pm

Donna, David, Alex, et al, because everyone seems to have so much trouble with the polaroids, I’ve thought about changing how it works.

How would you prefer/envision that this feature might work best for you, from getting your pictures in to setting the text? Open for any feedback.

September 19, 2010 8:32 am

I am creating a website for a client and want to upload my images for the polaroids, but I have only used the Dashboard to update the previous themes I have worked with. I see you listed a folder, but where to I go exactly to see the folder and upload my images? I will have to look for an FTP service as well since I don’t have that either, I use DropBox.com. Would that work. New to WordPress and hopefully you can help me. Thanks!

March 20, 2011 2:14 pm

Michelle, you will need to use an FTP program in order to add the images to the appropriate folder. Dropbox won’t work. When you access the site via FTP, find the WordPress folder, and go to wp-content/themes/travelogue/randimages and place the sized image files there.

March 21, 2011 5:09 pm

I used the theme for a recent holiday blog and it worked very well. I’m wanting to use it again for the next holiday, but want different pictures in the header (reflecting a different part of the world). Is there any way of keeping the old blog showing African pictures, while the new blog shows European pictures? That is, can there be two directories of photos?


June 5, 2011 6:38 am

Rob, not super elegant, but you can always just move the old files into a separate folder for the time being. That should do the trick.

June 6, 2011 10:27 pm

Thanks Joshua. I know I could do that, but then the old blog will show up photos from the wrong countries. I was hoping to keep the old blog still functional. Not to worry.

June 7, 2011 1:57 am

Hey Joshua,

Thanks for the wonderful amazing theme. The only thing I wonder:
The Polaroid displays a caption of “Pictures from My Life trails”. Is there a way to change it?

November 30, 2011 10:29 pm

Again, the question is to have it changed for different pics

November 30, 2011 10:43 pm