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Huh,

Where to begin with this? I have been feeling the same way as gnaster lately. I remember when you showed us your tank a while back and it was critiqued pretty hard. I agree that the Nature/Amano style seems to be the norm right now. I find in my new scapes that I gravitate toward fan type wood placement, mounds of plants and while not an open foreground, definitely a large forground covered with glosso or marsilea.

What are some examples of American aquascapes? Is this one? What about this or Cavan Allan's

Like I said, I have been thinking of this to lately. I would love to be able to come up with something original, new. American:) I find to me though that if it looks neat, natural and relaxing I feel like it is a nature/Amano style. If it feels regimented then its Dutch and all others are just messy and unorganized. Some of the links that I posted are tanks that I don't fell fit in these categories. Jeff Kroop's especially. That is a scape I was drawn to from the beginning since it looks wonderful but not like any of the other "styles". What would you consider his to be? It seems to be organized but not contrived. So many of these Amano style tanks are unnatural feeling to me. Nature NEVER looks like that, but then again he would be the first one to agree with that:)

Should we start trying to take inspiration for an American style from America? Do we look to our waterways and lakes, focus on native flora and fauna? We talk about Ricky Cain's "Zen" Style but he will say he's not basing anything on "Zen" (Or so I seem to remember from his Chat one Thursday night). I feel that the Amano/Nature styles are drawn more from the eastern culture than anything else. Look at the Zen/Buddhist gardens. temples and shrines for comparison. Where should we draw our American style from? Start looking at the old Southern plantations, Spanish moss on oak trees and the grandiose peaceful old houses. Maybe look to the swamps, but then it might start to look Amanoesque. Sticks/roots with plants on them. Then again, if we look at Amano's tanks with rock and glosso or hairgrass I immediatly think of Ireland or Scotland.

Look tho the western lands withtheir wide open spaces and big sky country? Iowa corn fields:) Seriously, what about the Sequoia parks or the more rugged forests of upper Ca, Washington or Oregan?
Maybe the hard part of American style is that America is such a diverse melting pot of cultures and peoples. Sorry I ramble:) I think I hoped that by just typing freely I would come up with some of the answers. Guess I need to stew on it some more:). Lets keep this going!
 
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