beginner issues building site

Hi everyone

I'm starting a business and I'm trying to build my own website. My knowledge of HTML is almost nothing at best (I could probably change the size and colour of text, and possibly move an object if i found its coding). I picked Concrete5 from the options the my hosting provided, because with the in context editing it looked like you could make a professional looking site without needing to learn how to code. While I would like to learn a bit more about coding getting my website up and running is more important at the moment.

Here is where I'm at:
I can create, edit and manipulate blocks fine, I can also divide up areas into columns.
What I'm struggling with is the restrictions that the block areas create.
I'm just using the preset elemental theme.
When I create a new page it doesn't give me options for different types, and the four templates I have are full, blank, left, right.
Apart from blank, the templates give defined block areas in the header and footer, but these are restricting how I can set up the banners for the top of the page. (for example, while learning the system a put a picture in one area but I cannot make the picture any wider than the area's preset size.
The block area's are also leaving a big (1-2cm) gap between what I put in them and the top/bottom of the screen)
I could do everything I want in the one block area of the blank page but it seems like I'm missing out on some of the functionality of the program by doing that.

Are the lack of page types and templates just part of Elemental?
Is there a way of changing the block areas without understanding the coding of the templates?
If not is there a template that just has a single header and footer block area?
Other than not having sitewide changes are there any issues of just using the single area of a blank page?
There are lot's of videos how how to edit existing sites, are there any on how to start with a blank slate (I've looked a lot)?

I am willing to go into the coding if that's what it takes but I really would need step by step instructions.

My apologies for the essay, but a lot of the discussions on here are going straight over my head as I don't have an in depth understanding.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

View Replies:
Steevb replied on at Permalink Reply
If your image is wide enough you could try 'Disabling' the grid container.

Click 'Main' area and add an 'Image' block, then click again and and choose 'Design & Custom Template', then click the 'Gear' icon and from the dropdown under 'Block Container Class' choose 'Disable Grid Container' and 'Save'.

Hope that helps.
albertpea replied on at Permalink Reply
Thanks for the reply

I disabled the grid container, but I still don't seem to be able to alter the size of an image other than shrinking it within its current area. Perhaps my images aren't big enough, but I've got a few all the same sized image displaying at various sizes on the website and they all still remain fixed in size either by the block area or the columns set within a block..
WillemAnchor replied on at Permalink Reply
Hi albertpea,

I'll give you a few leads, not a complete answer.
You state that you are not afraid to learn some coding so I'll take that in mind. The simple answer would be: take a look at the available themes on the marketplace.

It will take you some time to read and learn a bit of html and css, but at the end, you'll have so much more control.

You can create your own templates and also adapt some styles. To do this without messing up your elemental theme, I suggest you install
This is the same as elemental, but will serve as a base theme.

Read a bit more about templates, and also:
You can now adapt your default.php template file, or create a template file yourself. concrete5 will find it, and you can install it: dashboard/pages/themes, hit 'page templates'.

You can see some php and html code in this file. The style is done in the /css files.
You won't need to go in-depth, just take a good look at the basic structure and find out what all the <divs> etc. mean.
Also note that eg:

is including another file, that you can find in /elements.

For styling, you will need to take a look at /css/main.less
You can add css-rules at the end of this file (easy to find back all the changes you made) or to the different style files that are included by your main.less.

There are many sites about html and css.
concrete5 also uses .less (kind of css) and bootstrap (eg container, row, col-xs-6, container-fluid) for styling

Themes overview:

Hope this helped.
albertpea replied on at Permalink Reply
Thanks for the different suggestions, I've been away from it for a couple weeks, but I shall look into learning some of what you suggested.