I'm still in the stage where I'm trying to let the hardscape help shape my tank. The tanks where I have enough wood or rocks to let the hardscape define my planting regions look much better than my tanks that have very little hardscape. I usually blow it by trying to cram in a few (maybe several) extra species of plants. I have OCD tendencies and way too many plants in my collection.
Something I'd like to try (if I can ever talk myself into eliminating species) is to take aboveground nature photos and interpret them underwater. I've made a couple half-hearted attempts at this and find that getting rocks and wood that work the way I want is more challenging than finding the right plants.
Yes precisely why I'm going to be investing in a large farm tank in the future.
Finding the plants is less of a concern for me now, although I am still very much concerned with the "habit" of each plants growth and how it responds throughout trimmings/time. I found my self very satisfied seeing a new friends tank (you should read the story on how we met) https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ge...all-world.html
, because his setup was much more simplistic albeit unplanned a low light setup thriving in hard water that happened to have enough nutrients to moderately maintain the tank. I have tried to concentrate on more of few species lately, kind of a minimalist approach that has helped me sort through things better. I have a great imagination its just not so easy to develop the landscape in my mind, some kind of block I guess. The main reason I asked the question is that I'm beginning that threshold from maintenance breaking into design, and of course I'm really stuck.
While I'm still moved at viewing the same tanks on a very visceral level, I'm happy to report that continuous study is causing me to see beyond the emotional. Now I can see that the aquascapes are not all flat. Or that there is a significant contrast between colors. Or a consistent color palate. Or a consistency in the patterns of leaves, or the lines that they draw. Or the blalance of the element of the design. Or the placement of color, or artifact, that draws the eye to one place or another.
I see your point here using the logical to develop the aesthetic, I will try to be more observant, I guess I still get a buzz from a well developed tank.
Is there anyone seriously into art/design that has some insight on techniques that we can apply here, something time tested perhaps? I like the golden ratio but after you apply it, it seems only a place to start, and I don't necessarily think our designs have to be based on our need for symmetry wether conscious or not. Thanks for the responses, because I have some sincere concerns about how to move forward here.