As you know I'm shrimpoholic now, so my set up is all about them. Still I'm also plantoholic so I have to have heavily planted tanks.
I think the blyxa in the middle is too tall now. It's probably well rooted now also.
How do I trim it?
I have to keep taller plants in the edges to hide all the piping. Therefore I though about using the middle as a "valley", the floaters for the shrimpies.
I keep a lot of plants, I'm attached to them! I have to keep a few stems of each at least!
However, I'm one of those 43. I submitted this year to learn more about the process and prepare for next year. I don't expect my rank to be even 1000.
One curious thing I learned, is that the dimensions are centimeters. There is no indication of this assumption, so beware! Translate your inches into cm before punching in numbers! After you enter there is no way to correct that info.
Do you mind sharing a bit about how to shot a good picture for the challenge?
The IAPLC seems to be an aqua scaping and photography contest 50/50!
They have some info about aquatic photography right on the IAPLC website. However, I think most of it comes down to experimentation. Light is everything. It's been proven that you can take a professional looking pic with something as simple as an iPhone provided all your lighting is dead on. In that case, front top lighting, back lighting, side lighting... the more angles you cover, the better off your pics will turn out. I personally shoot for some shadows because I think it ends up adding more depth to the picture.
Definitely, using a nice speedlight and a remote is also a big plus. I think my pics turned out alright, but they could still be a lot better and I will lose points based on the pic that I ultimately submitted. Wish I would have had more time.