We’re starting a new series at LatestWP where we will host an interview with some of the finest WordPress people to learn about the behind-the-scene of their success. Today we’re starting off with one of the rising stars in the WordPress Premium Themes domain, Mostafa Mabrouk, the man behind Code125 on ThemeForest.
Hi Mostafa, We’re glad to have you here at LatestWP today. Could you please introduce yourself to our readers?
Hello LatestWP, Thank you for inviting me for this interview. My name is Mostafa Mabrouk and basically I can describe my self as an engineer. I graduated from Telecommunications Engineering Major, Alexandria University in 2011 where I live in there most beautiful city… Alexandria, Egypt.
How and When did you start your WordPress journey?
I started the web-development journey in my senior year in college 2 years ago when I found ThemeForest and got introduced to WordPress. I immediately saw a lot of potential in this marketplace and since then, I decided to learn every single step to become one of the successful authors of this amazing network.
So, did that made you decide to get into the commercial theme business?
Yeah, since the first day I found Envato, I knew that WordPress theme is one of the best commercial businesses you can do in the web-development. Besides, building ThemeForest WordPress themes gives me the freedom to focus my passion on making something creative and new, as most of the client work is strictly committed to the client demands, even if this is not what I am looking to work for. That’s why I love WordPress themes development.
So you don’t do any client work at all?
Not much, mainly for the reason i mentioned in the previous question. Besides, focusing on creating something new requires somehow to be free for this mission, as creating something new doesn’t pop up in a few minutes. It’s a long cycle of trying some crazy ideas till you got something new and looks good.
Would you ever consider starting up your own shop for direct sales at Code125 or maybe join-forces with another theme developer/designer?
My own shop for WordPress?! hmmm, No, I believe ThemeForest is the best marketplace. Getting bigger in this marketplace is more useful for me to make good use of the 2 millions clients that Envato has. About Joint-Forces … I already have joint forces with some designers from Turkey and Europe, and they are doing some pretty designs.
What’s your take on the Premium Themes marketplaces? Do you think the market is slowing down or moving ahead with more demand?
I am very convinced with the marketplaces concept. Actually, I might have a marketplace in the future as a startup “Not for WordPress though” but i will be looking for the perfect idea for this marketplace. Actually, More Demand equals more themes equals more variety to
[quote style=”boxed” float=”left”]My themes are born with their names first[/quote] Describe to our readers the process which you follow when creating a new theme and how long it takes you to finish a theme from scratch.
My themes are born with their names first. In my first theme Shahrzad, I got the name and logo finished first then sketching the possible layouts and ideas for the website until I got the best choice then I started coding it, then refined it using some other sketches and so on. It is a closed production cycle till I got satisfied about the theme got approved.
What are your future plans for Code125? Any new themes on the pipeline?
Well, Hopefully Soon I can open Code125 office in Alexandria and start a larger production cycle for WordPress Themes, And about the coming themes I am taking 2 weeks vacation for my family then I will be back working and creating more new themes.
What advice would you give to other aspiring theme developers and bloggers?
Themeforest themes have a very long process specially in the beginning of the first WP theme. So, take a deep breath and keep your eyes on details and evaluate your website from the client point of view and you’ll see your weakness points and the most Important things …. Don’t get upset if you got rejected, just keep trying and trying.
Finally, Thank you very much for being with us today Mostafa, we wish you and Code125 all the best.
Thank you LatestWP for this opportunity to share my thoughts with you :), I wish you all the success in the world and I am glad to have a new friend