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It is a beautifl aquascape. The central rise and jagged shape of the rocks give me a very alpine impresssion, like the northern Rockies, the Brooks Range or the Swiss Alps. There is even a shadow across the center of the composition that looks like the shadow of a high cloud crossing over the peaks. The red plants bring to mind patches of deciduous trees (gambel oak, for instance) turning red in early autumn.

As Jeff pointed out a part of that impression comes from the photography and/or from treatment of the digital image. It's hard to say how much of the impression is real and how much is a digital treatment. Certainly the pool of light over the center and the darkened corners could be real if the photographer placed studio lights over the center of the tank for the photograph. The shadow could even be a digital effect, or it could be caused by a tank brace or even by a fortuitously timed ripple. As much as the effects *can* be real,I suspect that a lot is digital. I downloaded the image and looked for features in the dakr background and found almost none. If the effects were real then I should have been able to find more information in the background.

The basic idea is essentially the same as Amano's "Shining on the plateau" from Nature Aquarium World. The aquascape is a little more original in its use of plants -- particularly the red plants that frame the large stone at the optical center of the 'scape.

I think that the composition is weighted a little too heavily to the right. The stone to the right of the focus is almost as massive as the center piece. The digital enhancement probably also plays a large role here. I'd like to see what it looked like without the background being brushed away.

The lack of fish causes me no problem. In fact in "Shining on the plateau" the shimp on Amano's stones tend to wreck the sense of massive scale the aquascape conveys. I think fish would have the same effect here. The fish would provide an unavoidalble scale for the photograph and reduce part of the (probably intended) effect.


Roger Miller
 
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