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Call me a skeptic, but I think a lot of the so called focal points are just points we convince ourselves to be toe focal point. I have definately seen plenty of scapes where there were definate focal points and some definately followed the golden ratio.

I do think however, that we are falsely generating the illusion of a focal point just because there "has to be a focal point" ..and that it must lie on a golden ration bound/intersection.

For example, in the first picture, I really don't see a strong focal point at all. I see an "area of interest" in the darkened center, but no focal point. I can see a very weak "after taste" of a focal point that tsunami mentions, but that is it. If I had to find a focal point, his pick probably would be mine....but that is only if I had to find one.

In the second picture, I definately see horizontal banding that fit within golden ratio boundries. The bit of emptiness IMO is not what I'd call a focal point. Sure your eye get drawn there because of its visual interuption, but I see no reason to WANT to focus there. If anything, I'd call the crypt? in the lower left the focal plant, although there are no real visual ques leading you there.

In the last scape, I can see how you may wan tto call the ammania a focal point since it lies on the intersection of golden lines, but my eyes are drawn all over the place in this tank equally well. why do I babble?...well...I think a focal point should be obvious. If you ask yourself "Is this the correct focal point? ", then I think the point of the focal point was l somewhat lost if a focal point was intended. Slapping a few golden ratio lines on an image and calling an interesection the intended focal point of the aquascape IMO is the wrong way to do it.

Focal points IMO are like showcased plants, rocks, wood etc that draw attention to themselves. It could be purely by them selves, or by leading lines. Not all scapes were designed with focal points. Must we HAVE TO FIND a focal point in all scapes?

..well,..those are my 2 cents. ..probably more or less than some want to hear :) I mean no offence if anyone takes offence
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