Working around a wordpress template

Hello, new here to sitepoint so forgive any blatant ignorance while i ask this question.

im working on a simple blog site, but being fairly unfamiliar with php and javascript, im not sure how to go about creating a GUI (i wont be using the blog site).

My first plan is to use a wordpress template and build a custom appearance on top, preserving the GUI on the back end for my client.

Is this a waste of time, or would this be the best way to go for a beginner ?

Any links to walkthroughs would be helpful. Thanks!

By GUI I assume you mean a backend, or the wp-admin area for managing the content?
Technically the front end that the public sees is a GUI too, because it’s not a command line.

Anyway learning to build a WordPress theme is probably a good idea, although there will be quite a steep learning curve. You’ll need to be a little familiar with PHP, and there is a lot of WP-specific stuff to learn. It’s a dominant platform and reasonably easy for the site owner to use.

It’s not the best way to learn PHP though. WP has a lot of bad programming practices, so learning to develop by studying WP is like asking someone who is dyslexic to teach you how to read.

As you don’t know WP or PHP that well, I’d go with WordPress, find a theme that most closely resembles the structure of what you want to do and use the WP Codex as a guide for how to modify it to your needs. Don’t expect to knock it over in a few days though.

I have used a number of different content management systems, like Joomla, Wordpress, and Drupal, as well as built many sites from scratch. Which is best suited really depends on what you need the site to do. In my opinion, Drupal is the easiest to use – and it works for blogs, too. There are many templates available for it, though for it and Joomla I’m partial to RocketTheme’s work.

thanks alot guys. im just gonna put my nose to the grindstone and learn php over the next week and go from there. ive gathered the syntax basics and the wordpress loop already so im getting less worried by the moment!

thanks again