Paul Krasner wrote:
Yes, this picture from Yoshimira's book makes sense and helps define what Mike was trying to achieve. The Yoshimira tree is nice, not a national winner, but at least it has some movement, some feeling, some history that moves me. The tree of Mike's lacked all of these. I stood in front of that tree for quite some time after it won this category. I was open to the possibility that I did not understand its "inner beauty" but no matter how long I stood and waited for some inspiration, the experience still remained empty. I realize that all contests have controversy but quite frankly, in my opinion, this tree was ugly. I love the bunjin style and, in fact, it is my favorite style but surely there are better examples that could have been exhibited. If this is the best bunjin the US has, give me a pretty, textbook tree anyday?
I have to agree on this one. The Yoshimira tree isn't just nice, it's beautiful example of classical bunjin tree. It has a movement greater than Mike's tree and dramatic apex cascading downwards, with two different levels and negative spaces...I just love it. To mee, this is what classical bonsai is about, that's the way I see it. Correct me if I'm wrong. I don't want to be disrespectful and I'm happy for Mike, but I have to say what my heart and my fellings are telling me, about this tree... the way that this pine is shaped (the green part) is more like a mushroom or umbrella, all at the same hight.
Sorry for being honest.