Are premium themes open source? Should they even exist? Read When Premium WordPress themes and open source ethics collide for a good, controversial take on the subject.
If you think the idea of customizing a WordPress theme sounds painful you need to read this detailed, easy-to-follow tutorial on how to make a WordPress Child Theme.
Jeff Chandler gets at something I’ve been considering: WordPress themes that let users change the layout configuration from the admin might be a dead end. How many times do you need to change your layout? It’s neat feature—at first—but I think there might be a better way.
Dan Philbin of WPCandy gives the lowdown on WordPress Theme Frameworks, Child Themes and custom theme hooks and filters and how they relate to Thematic.
DesignMag has a good post up with some links to CSS layouts and Blank WordPress Themes but remember: if you’re starting with a Child Theme any WordPress theme becomes a blank framework.
An examination of five clean, minimalist themes for WordPress.
Cozmos Labs has written an extremely flattering tutorial/mini-essay on their experience with Thematic and how easy it was to theme their site. Make sure you read 10 design tips for your custom wordpress theme built with thematic—and don’t forget to share it if you liked it.
Benedict Eastaugh, Tarski theme developer, on what you can do with Child Themes in WordPress 2.7: “Greater possibilities are now also opened up for treating themes more like frameworks or plugins. We may see themes that are more of a code library than a set of templates.”