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WordPress Get the Author Outside Loop

This tutorial explains how to get the current Post Author outside of the WordPress Loop.

For the author-archive views generated by my shapeSpace starter theme, I needed a way to display author information outside of the Loop. This article explains two ways to make it happen..

Method 1

This method uses the WP API and is the cleanest way of getting author information outside of the Loop:

<h3>Posts by: 
	the_post(); // queue first post
	echo get_the_author(); // echo author
	rewind_posts(); // rewind the loop

..which may be simplified like this:

<h3>Posts by: <?php the_post(); echo get_the_author(); rewind_posts(); ?></h3>

As written, that code displays the author’s Display Name. To instead get the entire WP_User object, the code can be modified as follows:

	the_post(); // queue first post
	$author_id = get_the_author_meta('ID');
	$curauth = get_user_by('id', $author_id);
	rewind_posts(); // rewind the loop

Then you can call any method or property of WP_User to get whatever author information is required. Here is an advanced example of this, as featured in the shapeSpace theme:

<div id="archive-view-author">
		the_post(); // queue first post
		$author_id = get_the_author_meta('ID');
		$curauth = get_user_by('ID', $author_id);
		$user_nicename    = $curauth->user_nicename;
		$display_name     = $curauth->display_name;
		$user_description = $curauth->user_description;
		$user_email       = $curauth->user_email;
		$user_url         = $curauth->user_url;
		$user_website     = $curauth->website_name;
		$user_twitter     = $curauth->twitter;
		rewind_posts(); // rewind the loop
	<h3>Author Profile: <a href="<?php echo get_author_posts_url($author_id, $user_nicename); ?>"><?php echo $display_name; ?></a></h3>
	<?php if ($user_description) echo '<p>'. $user_description .'</p>'; ?>
	<?php if ($user_email)       echo get_avatar($user_email, '100'); ?>
	<?php if ($user_url || $user_twitter) : ?>
		<?php if ($user_url) : ?>
		<li>Website: <a href="<?php echo $user_url; ?>"><?php if ($user_website) : echo $user_website; else : echo $user_url; endif; ?></a></li>
		<?php endif; ?>
		<?php if ($user_twitter) : ?>
		<li>Twitter: <a href="https://twitter.com/<?php echo $user_twitter; ?>">@<?php echo $user_twitter; ?></a></li>
		<?php endif; ?>
	<?php endif; ?>

So pretty much you can get whatever author/user infos you need, even outside of the WordPress Loop.

Method 2

Here is an alternate method that uses the global $post object along with get_the_author_meta() to retrieve the author’s Display Name:

<?php if (is_author()) : 
	global $post;
	$author_id = $post->post_author;
	$author = get_the_author_meta('display_name', $author_id); ?>

<p class="archive-type"><span><?php _e('Posts by:', 'shapespace'); ?> <?php echo $author; ?></span></p>

To get other author details, you can change the first parameter of get_the_author_meta().

Learn more

Digging Into WordPressWordPress Themes In DepthWizard’s SQL Recipes for WordPress