Is it just me, or do all the new themes look the same to you?
I understand that responsive design means that everything, like formerly great os/X programs have to be dumbed down to accommodate the iphones. But it is a bit like putting the geniuses in special ed. Or like lumping the whole autism spectrum together.
It seems like the only difference is the header image and the colour scheme.
three or four categories
I think it’s just you.
It is true, however, that many themes have a common macro-structure. But I have to believe that’s a good thing. There’s a now-old book about web design titled, “Don’t make me think”, and these designs are probably reflecting that approach. It’s good if a user doesn’t have to figure out where menus are, or how to do basic navigation. I’m not seeing this as a problem.
In the end it’s the content, and the design + organization of that content, that should be doing the heavy-lifting and creating those “wow” moments. There’s lots of ways to accomplish this.
In the beginning of RW I’ll confess I bought a number of themes, but I very rarely buy a theme these days. It’s just not needed. I’ve opted for simple themes, that give me a lot of flexibility. For a “regular” theme I go with ThemeFlood’s Volcano or Flood theme all the time now. For “open-ended” themes I go with Foundation, but I’ve heard many good things about Freestacks as well.
Maybe these more open-ended approaches (either Foundation/Freestacks or very very flexible regular themes like Volcano or Flood) would allow you to create something that works better for you. But the cookie-cutter themes don’t seem that different to me either, and give me relatively little flexibility compared to the more versatile themes.
If you are complaining about boring visuals (that’s the impression I got from your post), check out Henk Vrieselaar’s themes.