It is interesting you should post this, because I have come to a point now where I feel fairly comfortable growing a decent variety of plants. But I seem to have a real difficulty in their arrangement to create the actual aquascape. I understand the principles, but putting them into play and maintaining them, is another story.
So, to answer the question, I don't have a preferred style, though I seem to like it more if there are red plants in it than if not. If it is well executed, I tend to like it
Wow, that's really impressive. Wonder what it takes to keep it that way.
I wonder about the most popular poll choice- doing your own thing. That would mean half the voters (at this point) say they have their own style. Does this mean a radical distinction from the recognizable styles, or simply the fact that folks always add some creativity to what they do? I don't think that choice answers the question- are we saying we like our own style best?
I voted for nature aquarium style because I like the aquarium to look like a chunk of nature, a view into another world, a microcosm suggesting something larger. I like the scapes that succeed in some sort of mystery, like if you could only see a little further down this way there would be more, an illusion of space that's bigger than the actual size. If I went snorkeling, I doubt I would ever find something in nature that looks like the tanks I like, but it appeals to what I think looks natural, anyway. The Dutch style and this Taiwanese figurine style are so impressive, but wouldn't get my vote. I'm more for French gardens than English, so the overly manicured look just isn't to my taste.
Since I can only vote one way I chose the Nature Style, since for viewing that has intrigued me more then any other. Now as to my own personal style of aquascaping I don't have one as of yet. Being my first planted aquaria and newly setup at that, I am ecstatic the plants are growing. I did try to arrange them in a pleasing manner but as I have no idea of the long term growth characteristics in my setup I cannot honestly say they are 'scaped.
My ultimate goal is learn how the plants I choose grow and interact with each other and my livestock, ultimately to place them in a design I find pleasing. There are many facets to this hobby I know little to nothing about at this time. Who knows, as time and experience progresses my goals may change. I'm not suffering from collectoritis nor multiple tank syndrome, yet.
kind of doing my own thing right now because I'm new at this and like to observe how different plants grow and which ones seem to do best for me and my conditions. For most of my life I wondered why I could never grow real aquatic plants and when I found this and a couple of other boards a 40 year old mystery was lifted.
Only place I've ever seen nature look like an amano tank was Silver springs in Florida(think that's what it's called)and I'm not so certain the aquascape wasn't manipulated for tourists. The rest look more like the hodgepodge jungle in my tank or are very sparse with a couple species growing here and there.
I may try to scape it a bit more further down the road but looking at my regular gardens I don't see things getting too formal.
Wow! I really can grow tank plants! Still too much fun testing a bunch out.
the pix above was ADA 2001 World Ranking 21 Winning Work created by Jang Kae Fuh. it looks nice. actually, it looks like Chinese/Japanese courtyard/bonsai. even i'm Taiwanese, i never hear that Taiwanese style exist with animal and human figurines! where are those info coming from? :lol: so... this is a Taiwanese style too? :roll:
i like nature/Amano style because it looks real. it likes you put wild scene into a limited space in your place. i want to try Tonina/Eriocaulon tank coz its not only aquascaping, but also keep those plants alive. they need more maintenance. most of species are not easy to keep. it's kinda a challenge for me. :twisted:
in my opinion, i like my tanks coz each of them is the only one exist in the world. you cannot find another same one anywhere else. i enjoy and have fun with it. i watch, maintain, enjoy it everyday. i love it the best, and other people's opinion the last. why bother? if it's for competition purpose, it's another story. i think i will ask some adivices from people who have had most experiences, and have attened some contest already, but still... it's my tank.
This taiwanese style usually represents farm life common when driving around taiwan's mountainous areas or along the smaller towns. They will have figurines of pigs, water buffalo, people and houses. It seems very realistic with "rice paddies" and "trees" and makes for a pastoral scenery. The style seems pretty new in the hobby as I can't find many pictures or examples on the web. I have seen the ADA journal feature many of the aquariums before. They do seem difficult to maintain and keep the plants in check.
I've always admired the Dutch style, but due to the strict rules tied to the style dissuaded me from trying it out. I'm thinking of maybe using more exotic plants than the species regularly used, and the image of daily trimming gives me a headache.
I remember being in awe of the Dutch-style aquariums I saw in books back in the 70s. And Amano's creations take on an almost surreal qualty. For inspiration both are great, but in practice it always comes down to the "what-looks-good-to-me-at-the-time" style. Having an LFS with an outstanding plant assortment relatively nearby (Albany Aquarium, Albany CA) doesn't help curb the before mentioned "collectoritis" either!
I have to go along with Bert and his response. I also seem to be able to get the plants to grow, and the algae, d--- it. I like to use driftwood in my tanks because I feel it provides a more realistic picture. I'm still trying to learn the trimming thing and what plant combinations look good. I have been using a 30 gallon tank to grow plants that I bought over the net. These were to be placed in a 75 gallon tank but I found some very nice Blue Rams several weeks ago and put them in the 30. Now one pair is tending a clutch of eggs that were laid yesterday. So if they hatch out and I can keep them alive the 75 is going to have to wait a while. I find that I enjoy the plants every bit as much as the fish.