Discourse Theme Creation

I personally don’t like unnecessary animations but It shall be possible given that discourse itself gives a quick tutorial to those who are starting new ala discobot.

About the banner, there are theme components which allow you to create/modify a banner on top of your forum to your liking.
e.g. :Versatile Banner

about themes, I think They are very flexible as they are (we are allowed to hack css & html the way we like)