Sneak preview of my new web framework Michaelangelo

I’ve been working on a new web framework which provides image theming – a little like what Elegant Grunge does with its image frames, but much more sophisticated.

For example: boathouse.jpg

A dynamic caption


This is a PHP framework that uses the common GD library to manipulate images.

It’s main interface is a content filter – give it HTML, containing images, and it will return the same HTML modified so that the images are now the converted versions, according to their ‘class’ attributes, with appropriate width/height attributes, etc. This makes it super easy to work with.

It stands alone, but it is also going to be a WordPress plugin (as you can see on this site, it’s already operational), a Joomla plugin, and I’m considering establishing a web service too, so those who don’t have adequate software on their server can still use it.


It has a plugin-based architecture so anyone can add new ‘themes’ (props to my partner Katherine for that beautiful wooden frame, by the way). I’m going to also implement a simple XML-based plugin schema, and possibly an interface to it, so that it’s easy to do so. I’m planning a ‘community’ style directory site to host contributed styles.

The base frame rendering code is such that it is trivially easy to add a new ‘theme’. It extracts segments from a single frame image, and handles seamless tiling to make the frame the right dimensions, so you don’t even have to worry about overlapping regions.

I will release it soon, after adding a little more content – keep your eyes peeled.

For now, check out the Michaelangelo showcase, which gives an idea of the different styles, and contains an interactive sampler to play with styles (IE users should stop being IE users to view this).

Doing my bit to beautify the web.

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  1. Posted March 29, 2009 at 10:38 pm | Permalink

    Really nice idea and work. I like it very much and I'll use your wp plugin as soon as you release it. :-) Paolo

  2. Posted April 9, 2009 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

    Oh, dude, that would be so fucking awesome. It'd eliminate a bunch of the CSS and image-editing strateger-y I had to maneuver through on my current WordPress theme. Can't wait for the release!

  3. Posted April 26, 2009 at 12:00 am | Permalink

    Michael :) Very cool "scotch taped" corners. I will use that on my site when it's released. (Love your Elegant Grundge theme … just had to do some tweaks to it.)

  4. slion
    Posted April 30, 2009 at 2:35 am | Permalink

    This is the BEST! You are my hero most definitely. Can't wait to use the plug-in, please please release it! Thank you for sharing your genius with those of us who are code challenged!

  5. Posted August 27, 2009 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    Ho my hero ;)

    Since I saw the picture of both of you on your main page, I was looking around the web a easy solution to make the same “rotate polaroid with shadow” border… And I came back on your website to see that crazy Style showcase… That’s so cool !!! Thanks a lot for your theme, that page and I am waiting your plugin ;)

    Thanks and have a nice trip in France. If I understood well, you will be here in some days. I am french in Paris, so do not hesitate if you have some question or want something in France (see my email)… really do not hesitate.

    Salut :)

  6. Cisel
    Posted December 22, 2009 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

    Hey fella, can’t wait longer for your release, it must be awesome! Can’t wait to use the plug-in, what are your plans for releasedate? thanks a lot, all the best for you and your family for xmas and ny! cisel

  7. Posted December 23, 2009 at 10:27 am | Permalink

    Hi Cisel – Thanks for your interest! I have a bit of infrastructure to set up first, so it will probably be a month or two, I’m sorry to say – but it’s absolutely still in the pipeline. I’m actually integrating this project into another project of mine as well, which I will be releasing relatively soon. So, sooner or later, it’ll see the light of day!

    • Posted February 22, 2010 at 5:30 am | Permalink

      Hey Michael, thx for ur wordpress theme. Did u release this web framework plugin for image yet?