Are you a Parrot?

MichaelS

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I was anthropromorphizing of course. Perhaps this makes it more clear: let's say you have two trees and aren't just going to use them as firewood. The first has a trunk like this, and is perhaps a trident maple or elm:
Now how do you suppose we would make a purely naturalistic tree from these bones? Would you make huge sacrifice whips to reduce the taper? Carve out the curves? That would remove the taper and curves that make the tree interesting or appealing. To my eye, this sort of material "wants" to be classically styled, since this takes best advantage of it's existing characteristics.




tradtree2.JPG


The second is a collected conifer and has a trunk like this:

How could one make a classically styled tree out of this? Remove the dead spike? Try to wire curves into the living trunk? Trying to fit this into a traditional mold will also take away the aspects of the tree that make it interesting and unique. To emphasize it's best points, this tree "wants" to be styled naturalistically like an alpine conifer. Get it now?

Well exactly, why would you? You could (by doing all the things you mention and more. Like cutting it half and repositioning everything and make a new apex and..and. The Japanese have been doing it for ages. I call it ''domestication'') but that would very stupid.
 

MichaelS

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="Lorax7, post: 574252, member: 23052"]

Bonsai is art.

Bonsai is sculpture in the same way that sonnets are poetry.

Good so then you can enjoy these bonsai!

pottop.JPG



Bonsai can be representational, whether you like it or not.

Oh I do like it. I like the fact the bonsai represents nature.
Here’s a tree that survived Hiroshima and was later given to the United States: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015/08/1508050-japanese-bonsai-survived-hiroshima-bombing/. Do you think it’s accidental that the tree is styled in a shape suggestive of a mushroom cloud?

I don't know if it has been intentional since after the bombing or not. But I do know that the path of the tree was determined way way before WW2. It's kind of becoming something like the topiary above don't you think?

Look up Marshall McLuhan and consider his statement, “The medium is the message,” in the context of bonsai. Really meditate on this for a while and you’ll be rewarded with a deeper understanding of what you are really doing in bonsai, what it is that bonsai means, why you are working with living trees and not some other medium.

Well I've though about as deeply about this subject as I'm ever going to. No one will change my mind. But please go on trying.......

What the Japanese masters are doing with many of their trees is something akin to impressionism or, in the more extreme cases, perhaps surrealism (a dream about a tree rather than a real one).

You'll need to be more specific before I can comment. Show me some examples...if you will...[/QUOTE]
 

MichaelS

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While I myself am not a big fan of emojis, they can easily convey the sentiment when it is difficult to find the words that do. It might help people focus on what you are saying rather then how you say it. It’s just a thought.

I was using reductio ad absurdum to try to make my point. Somewhere we need to drawn a line between doers and talkers. Civilization was built from 99.99% (I just made that number up) student/teacher learning the last .01% was new invention, that inevitably ends up in the student/teacher learning system. A parrot on the other hand does not invent, does not teach and is not a student. A talking parrot is just a fancy party trick meant to get ooohhhhss and ahhhhhhs from others. It’s and attention grabber. That is no different for the most part, than people who give advice on topics they have no experience with, they are just trying to get attention, whether they know it or not. Of course there are exceptions, sometimes in a complete lack of information, any information as a starting point is good.

Michael, in the post I am responding to, you didn’t sound angry at all. You sounded like you were just trying to make yourself be understood. I only read it once and knew exactly the message you were trying to convey. You have a lot of great information to teach us and I usually understand what you are trying to say, even when it seems like half the forum is attacking you because they are focused on how you are saying it. It kind of sucks when all I want to read is a discussion of your ideas, techniques and your work, but all I am reading is people attacking you, sometimes justified.

I go back to this XKCD comic often. It reminds me that the other person might not be the problem. I may have posted this already in this thread, but i really like it.

View attachment 198649

Yeah I don't know if that applies to me because I don't think I am quite able to make myself perfectly clear.

But I'll try it this way. In my opinion, true bonsai is about trying to capture the essence of the natural world and everything else is either self indulgent or a failure.
 

amcoffeegirl

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In my opinion, true bonsai is about trying to capture the essence of the natural world and everything else is either self indulgent or a failure.

You have the right to believe whatever you want but it doesn't mean that everyone else has to agree with you.
 

Saddler

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Yeah I don't know if that applies to me because I don't think I am quite able to make myself perfectly clear.

But I'll try it this way. In my opinion, true bonsai is about trying to capture the essence of the natural world and everything else is either self indulgent or a failure.
I would say the only difference between you and the comic is that you know you are not able to make yourself (and often me as well) perfectly clear. It’s something I do work on and I know you do too when you don’t get distracted with an argument.

Your idea of what bonsai is, and I’m sure I will get flack for this, is pretty spot on as I read it. The key word is essence. That is exactly what a well done broccoli top bonsai is. The essence of a tree.

es·sence
ˈesəns/Submit
noun
the intrinsic nature or indispensable quality of something, especially something abstract, that determines its character.

People don’t like that 90% of everything is essentially garbage which means that probably most of what they have isn’t very good (I am aware I don’t have a single tree I would say is in that top ten percent, yet (stupid trees grow so slow)). People are human and have thin skin and get hurt easily. It took me about thirty years to learn that lesson because I looked at criticism as a way to do better, I just assumed everyone else did. HA! Logic is hard for most I found out. people will assign the nuanceS of a definition as it fits into their world view I have noticed.

You have the right to believe whatever you want but it doesn't mean that everyone else has to agree with you.
Ain’t that the truth. Do you always know why you are disagreeing?, because I wish I did.
 

MichaelS

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You have the right to believe whatever you want but it doesn't mean that everyone else has to agree with you.
Why do you and others keep saying that? It's getting very tiresome. This is a discussion. I have never argued that anyone MUST agree with me!! In fact I KNOW many never will. I'm trying to argue a point. The intention in an argument is to attempt to make others agree with you. The process DOES NOT DEMAND same! There is NO REQUEST!
Understand that or just leave it.


discussion
dɪˈskʌʃ(ə)n/
noun
noun: discussion
  1. the action or process of talking about something in order to reach a decision or to exchange ideas.
    "the committee acts as a forum for discussion"
    • a conversation or debate about a specific topic.
      plural noun: discussions
      "discussions about environmental improvement"
      synonyms:conversation, talk, dialogue, discourse, conference, debate, exchange of views, consultation, deliberation; More
      powwow, chat, tête-à-tête, heart-to-heart;
      seminar, symposium;
      talks, negotiations, parley;
      argument, dispute;
      adda;
      korero;
      informalconfab, chit-chat, rap;
      informalskull session, bull session;
      informalconvo;
      formalconfabulation;
      rarepalaver, colloquy, converse, interlocution
      "after a long discussion with her husband, she came to a decision"
    • a detailed treatment of a topic in speech or writing.
      "see Appendix One, for a more detailed discussion"
      synonyms:examination, exploration, analysis, study, review, scrutiny; More




    • argument
      ˈɑːɡjʊm(ə)nt/
      noun
      noun: argument; plural noun: arguments
      1. 1.
        an exchange of diverging or opposite views, typically a heated or angry one.
        "I've had an argument with my father"
        synonyms:quarrel, disagreement, squabble, fight, difference of opinion, dispute, wrangle, clash, altercation, feud, dissension, war of words, contretemps, exchange of views; More
        debate, discussion, discourse, disputation, controversy;
        informaltiff, barney, set-to, dust-up, bust-up, shouting/slanging match, spat, ding-dong, falling-out;
        informalrow;
        informalafters;
        informalrammy
        "he had a long argument with Tony"
      2. 2.
        a reason or set of reasons given in support of an idea, action or theory.
        "there is a strong argument for submitting a formal appeal"
        synonyms:reasoning, line of reasoning, logic, case; More


    • demand
      dɪˈmɑːnd/
      noun
      noun: demand; plural noun: demands
      1. 1.
        an insistent and peremptory request, made as of right.
        "a series of demands for far-reaching reforms"
        synonyms:request, call; More











 

MichaelS

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Saddler, post: 574463, member: 19719"]I would say the only difference between you and the comic is that you know you are not able to make yourself (and often me as well) perfectly clear. It’s something I do work on and I know you do too when you don’t get distracted with an argument.

Your idea of what bonsai is, and I’m sure I will get flack for this, is pretty spot on as I read it. The key word is essence. That is exactly what a well done broccoli top bonsai is. The essence of a tree.

That topiary I posted early has the ''essence'' of a tree. Does that make it bonsai? No? Why not? What's the difference?

The difference is this. It's not the essence of a tree we (I) want. It's the essence of nature represented in or by the tree. The topiary does not convey the essence of nature. That's what bonsai is and that's what seems to confuse everyone. Someone talked about cubism before. Make a tree in blocks. That would represent and have the ''essence'' of a tree but that's not bonsai. That's pop art. You may love it! - I might too if it's done well. But there is a distinction. Nature does not work in cubes. The reason we use wire to shape branches is to make them look natural not un-natural. If there is no distinction, then bonsai has no meaning anymore. Then a stone sculpture of a tree could be called bonsai just because it displays the essence of a tree.
 
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MichaelS

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I would say the only difference between you and the comic is that you know you are not able to make yourself (and often me as well) perfectly clear.
.

That's exactly what I said.
 

Anthony

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Hilarious ------ mannerism = cubism meets Bonsai:eek:
Naturalism is taking overo_O

But I will stay with - Idealism.:cool:
Good Day
Anthony
 

Owen Reich

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@JudyB ,

Ny and I used to be more aggressive to each other.
I suspect presently we are closer to being friends.
Hence the teasing.

I know Owen from before, decent guy, why would I
want to him ?
Say Gmelina to him.

Hmm, by the time you folk are finished with me, I
would be Mr,Pollyanna.
These are just conversations, and I often wax philosophical.
When I am out to hurt you, you would know.
Pax oh owner of beautiful trees.
Good Day
Anthony

Anthony,
apologies for not following through on evaluating that plant for you. I travel 90% of the time. I’ll post some data on here for the species. Working with the Meehans this weekend, and they know the species well.
 

Anthony

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@Owen Reich ,

no need to. I only sent the Gmelina, so you could practice on it.
Remember, you remarked to me that you would have liked to
teach, in the tropics.

Those were the closest to the tropics I could easily find to let you
get the experience.

I figured you would be busy.
Hope all is well.
Good health to you.
Anthony
 
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@MichaelS Stuppid question. What is the most wonderfull bonsai creation you made? I didn't see it. Something New!! out off the box, not Japanees. Show the world!!! hope that i am really wrong........
 

MichaelS

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@MichaelS Stuppid question. What is the most wonderfull bonsai creation you made? I didn't see it. Something New!! out off the box, not Japanees. Show the world!!! hope that i am really wrong........
How can you be really wrong about a question?

I would never call any of my trees wonderful. Out of the box? I'm thinking about itconstsntly. You don't just make a tree in a few years unless you have fantastic collected material to start with. I start all my trees from scratch. I'm thinking more deeply about branch placement than I have in the past. I am beginning to angle conifer branches up rather than down for example. Not all of them obviously. It is a very slow process. I study the form of real trees to get ideas about how to form branches in a way that is not practiced by the mainstream, not just to be different but because I think it's the way forward. If I can change some of my traditionally styled trees I will. If I can't do that without going backwards 10 or 20 years, I won't bother. I'm talking about a different approach to the process not about finished trees. I'm talking about concepts. To ask me to show you a tree where all these elements exist is unfair and seems a bit naïve to me. There are many examples of trees which give a very natural
all around the world. There are many in Japan as well. Look at them if you want to understand what I mean. Or better still, look at real trees.
 

MichaelS

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Hilarious ------ mannerism = cubism meets Bonsai:eek:
Naturalism is taking overo_O

But I will stay with - Idealism.:cool:
Good Day
Anthony
Yes idealism perhaps but don't forget that naturalistic is not necessarily appealing just because it's naturalistic. It can be downright repulsive!
 

Anthony

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Wonder what this looks like now - has it changed?
has it thickened too much ?
Is it as it was imaged a while ago ?

After so many years and time marches on, was it
worth it ?
Good Day
Anthony

Amazing -------- when you reach this level of refinement,
how do you keep it from changing ? Falling apart ?

It has to grow, thicken to live, and after it passes the
perfection, how do you feel ----------- wasted your time ?

amazing.jpg
 

just.wing.it

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Looks like a Baltimore Bus Stop...
Just less trash and needles....and people standing sideways asleep...
And that broken bench is supposed to say..."the greatest city in the world".

I used to love taking pictures of those bus stops....the old ones said The City That Reads (which was a laugh-line even in it's time) and people scratched out Reads and wrote Bleeds.
 
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