Will Heath wrote:
John Dixon wrote:
I am just trying to say if this were mine, the upper left would be my preferred view, without question.And here lies the crux of the debate. John, your preferred "front" satisfies your sense of what is bonsai, it matches your experience, your learning, your world view. However, the next person to view the tree may very well prefer another "front" that matches what the see and how they see it. if Walter displayed any other "front" than the one you personally prefer, others may love it, you may not. Why then not show them all?
Walter hit upon a basic truth, the uneducated masses have absolutely no clue what a "front" is, they only see a beautiful tree in a pot. It's the total, overall, complete effect that gets the "oohs and ahs" from the viewing public. The sculptured, planed, molded for front viewing only bonsai appeals to the elite but this same elite can not help but to consider the possibilities involved with a bonsai that can be viewed from all sides.The argument that styling all sides of a bonsai to be visually pleasing somehow negates the front is flawed
. Adding to the visual viewing pleasure of the whole does not automatically take away from the front, in fact given the greater depth and attention to detail on the whole, it should and can improve a "front."
John,The put up or shut up response you gave above has been beaten to death. Walter and Colin both have shown remarkable bonsai that are visually pleasing from many views.
I for one applaud there efforts and the courage it takes to break away from the norm to try and make this wonderful art better. Walter took a lot of slack with his natural looking trees, but who now can debate their beauty?
I have seen a few efforts made to show that this 360 idea is not impossible and there have been words quoted and pictures posted. I would ask that you prove that it can not be done, I ask you to do the same that you have asked of us, prove it impossible.
There is aways room for improvement. The word Bonsai itself is less than 150 years old, the use of wire was heavily fought against and there are still some who refuse to use it, soil is still debated hotly, and almost everything involving bonsai was or still is hotly debated, concave cutters, native plants, styles, root pruning, etc.
The fact remains that most bonsai are just plain ugly when viewed from any angle but the narrowly defined front. Are we not better artists than this? I again bring up sculpture, are we sculpting our trees or just simply doing bas reliefs, a pale imitation, a painting of a tree?
Again, there will always be a front the artist prefers, you will always have a preferred front to view, these may not be the front I prefer, but with only one choice, are we not limiting the viewing experience?
No sir, I ain't buying that. This 360* display theory has not been proven to my satisfaction. I asked for proof, I have not received any. I have the highest regards for both Walter and Colin, but the mere use of their names isn't proof, it's posturing. Walter just wrote that he still has a "clear favorite front, usually" on his bonsai. I am the same way. To not have a clear front could be viewed as indecisive styling, as quickly as it can be called innovative design. That's why I require visual proof of this theory.
From my read of your remarks above, it sounds like a step towards the "elite" catering to the views of the uninformed. They MAY prefer a different view because they don't understand the concept of a front view? So let's re-invent the wheel? That is dangerous terrain to tread on, my friend. The very concept of this forum is to discuss bonsai styling among those who are a little more along the way of how bonsai has evolved and should be approached, but it sure sounds like you are saying we should give those just starting out more options than real guidance. That's backing up, not going forward. I'm sure you will disagree with that, but that's how it came across to me.
I have said it repeatedly; I agree with making bonsai as visually appealing from all angles as you can, but not at the expense of one preferred view. I won't continue to state that because I think I have satisfied any doubt about my mindset on that topic. I do NOT agree with the 3D display being a required part of bonsai. It's okay, I'll accept it as a possibility, but I do not foresee it as the next big step in bonsai creativity.
Multiple display possibilites, yes. 360* displays being superior, no. More words will not likely change my opinion. Actual visual proof can, but we are not "seeing" any. It's just my opinion, maybe that has some weight, maybe it doesn't. I'm not trying to convince anyone I'm right and you are wrong. I just disagree with you on this, respectfully.
You remarked earlier on how much you love Lenz creations. Okay, now let's critique his "pelican". How will THAT bonsai look from the back? Is the aesthetic value of it as good from other views as it is from the one that clearly shows the silhouette of a pelican? Is that bonsai better viewed "static" with a plain background, or on a pedestal that can be walked around? Maybe that helps with justifying my stance on this.