Questions/thoughts on finding your inspiration - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-21-2006, 09:36 PM Thread Starter
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Lightbulb Questions/thoughts on finding your inspiration

Looking at "the whole world series" I got to thinking about inspiration. It really is hard for me to visualize an aquascape pre-completion. These tanks seem very inspired from the get go. I was wondering what inspired folks here or if they've done alot of what I've done which is cobble through with the species I had available at the time. With so much available now its hard for me to structure things in my mind, I'm thinking of just making a huge wall of plant pictures to help me work through my scaping. Its awe inspiring and intimidating at the same time to see some of the work out there, it really is spectacular. I try to look at landscapes but they seem lost in translation. I guess I'd like input so I can devise my own method of building on my existing ideas.

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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-21-2006, 10:37 PM
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In trying to create long-lasting 'scapes, my tanks develop over time. I have a general idea about the hardscape and tall-growing vs low-staying plants, but the exact placement is something I start to worry about a few months into the life of a tank, when things have stabilized and I have a better idea how plants react to the specific conditions in that tank.
Then, each time I look at the tank, I probably find one or two things that could be improved or don't look quite right, and often I make a note and fix them when it is tank day.
I guess very different from Amano and such who apparently know exactly in their heads what they want to achieve, even before there is a drop of water in the tank.


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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-21-2006, 10:58 PM
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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.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-22-2006, 01:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badren
Looking at "the whole world series" I got to thinking about inspiration. It really is hard for me to visualize an aquascape pre-completion. These tanks seem very inspired from the get go. I was wondering what inspired folks here or if they've done a lot of what I've done which is cobble through with the species I had available at the time.
Badren I have made a serious study of beautiful tanks, like the "whole world" series you are referencing. And I've certainty been "inspired", but I'm absolutely not yet skilled enough to make what I can see in my imagination a reality. There's the rub I'm afraid.

Over the last couple of years that I've been observing "inspired" tanks, I've noticed that my observation of them has changed. A couple of years ago I would "ooohhh" and "aaahhh" over a tank because I was struck by it's beauty. But now to my surprise (and delight) I find my reactions to be changing. 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.

Bottom line - it has become clear to me that real aquascape beauty is not an accident. But is instead a very real planned outcome.

I can't duplicate it yet. But I do feel comfortable telling you that a real breath taking aquascape is not likely to happen by accident. You have to study the nature of aquascape beauty, and try to recreate it.

My 2 cents. Good luck.

Steve - 33g reef and a 180g planted in need of a re-scape.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-22-2006, 04:04 AM
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I always make the mistake of throwing everything together with no idea of what I'm doing or creating. Only after I get everything together do I ever get an idea of how I want it to look. Bad habit.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-22-2006, 04:23 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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.

Quote:
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.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 03:56 AM Thread Starter
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are we can you say dead in the water...?
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