Does anyone know of a Visual Source that outlines the steps to achieve the various bonsai styles?

estradagies

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If there is one thing I've understood, even as a newbie at bonsai, it takes a deliberate and lengthy process to achieve any given style. Visual bonsai styles are readily available online but finding a source that describes and outlines the steps visually has been difficult for me to find. Some of the descriptions intended to describe the steps I've found are either too wordy or ambiguous in their description; making it difficult to follow. So if there is any advice on a visual source I would greatly appreciate it. If there isn't a source out there I will consider creating one for us newbies... I would still need a decent source to be able to follow and understand their steps.
 

HorseloverFat

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My Visual source is books. They are always there when you need them ... unchanging.

@penumbra took the words right out of my mouth... or “off my page”

I’ve heard Jonas’ “Little Book” is a GREAT first “bonsai resource”...

The first book that I read on Bonsai is entitled, “The Secret Techniques of Bonsai” and, I feel, offers a GREAT introduction to the art/science/aesthetics as well as more
advanced techniques and reading, if you’d like.

I may be biased because it was MY “first”, but they are MANY selections available. (I like Stone Lantern because their prices on (new) marked-down/clearance books can not be beat.

Books are most certainly a wise investment.
 

ShadyStump

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I think the biggest issue you'll have with finding the sort of comprehensive, step by step source I think you're looking for is that there's just SO MUCH DIVERSITY in the world of bonsai.
The steps you need for any given form are different for different species, and even then different cultivars of the same species will react slightly differently to the same actions sometimes. The basic concepts are generally universal, but, yes, still very ambiguous when explained because there's always an exception for every rule.
I do imagine you might find something for each specific common species and and sub species, though.
 

Adair M

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The thing is, there is no “one way”, or even “best way” to create bonsai. Growing from seed is vastly different than collection yamadori, and both of those are different than taking nursery stock as starter material. There are SO many “it depends”...
 
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I think the biggest issue you'll have with finding the sort of comprehensive, step by step source I think you're looking for is that there's just SO MUCH DIVERSITY in the world of bonsai.
The steps you need for any given form are different for different species, and even then different cultivars of the same species will react slightly differently to the same actions sometimes. The basic concepts are generally universal, but, yes, still very ambiguous when explained because there's always an exception for every rule.
I do imagine you might find something for each specific common species and and sub species, though.
Yersireebob, that is an awesome question right there!

Answering this without starting a brouhaha may be almost impossible, but let me wade in. If books won’t hit the spot for you there are a plethora of YouTube videos, etc. A couple of the folks I preferred when I was even newer were and still do prefer are:

Herons Bonsai - Peter Chan,
Nigel Saunders - The Bonsai Zone
Eisei-en Bjorn Bjorholm
Walter Pall - Look at his progressions
Bonsai Mirai - Ryan Neil
B4me - Harry Harrington
Saruyama - Peter Warren (esp azaleas)

I really would encourage you to look at taking at least some of beginning the online courses at Bonsai Empire. However they do have advanced courses. I’ve taken almost all of these and find them really comprehensive.

Then there are a couple books that work for me
Peter Adams - Bonsai withJapanese Maples
Peter Adams - Successful bonsai shaping
Both John Naka Bonsai Techniques books
Naka et al - Bonsai Techniques for Satsuki
The Art of Bonsai Desin - Colin Lewis

Thats good for starters

Cheers
DSD sends

PS: As you can see I really like to have lotsa dusty books to refer to!!!!
6BC53352-DABD-4C84-ABC6-513572AF2590.jpeg
 
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sorce

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If there is one thing I've understood, even as a newbie at bonsai, it takes a deliberate and lengthy process to achieve any given style.

If you take something that doesn't want to be a "style", and deliberately attempt to force it into a style, it becomes a lengthy process.

If you follow the basic guidelines or "rules" set forth for bonsai, or any artistic design endeavor, and allow the tree itself to dictate the "style", it becomes more enjoyable and shortens the process.

As far as strategies go....looking for books on the subject is already forcing your hand.
There are better strategies.

Sorce
 
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[
If you take something that doesn't want to be a "style", and deliberately attempt to force it into a style, it becomes a lengthy process.

If you follow the basic guidelines or "rules" set forth for bonsai, or any artistic design endeavor, and allow the tree itself to dictate the "style", it becomes more enjoyable and shortens the process.

As far as strategies go....looking for books on the subject is already forcing your hand.
There are better strategies.

Sorce
Well said!
I think it really takes a lot of time and experience for someone new to bonsai styling to completely comprehend what you just said, including myself! :)
For me, I'm finding that acquiring the plethora of skills to know how to allow a tree to dictate its style is very challenging.
cheers
DSD sends
 
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BobbyLane

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If there is one thing I've understood, even as a newbie at bonsai, it takes a deliberate and lengthy process to achieve any given style. Visual bonsai styles are readily available online but finding a source that describes and outlines the steps visually has been difficult for me to find. Some of the descriptions intended to describe the steps I've found are either too wordy or ambiguous in their description; making it difficult to follow. So if there is any advice on a visual source I would greatly appreciate it. If there isn't a source out there I will consider creating one for us newbies... I would still need a decent source to be able to follow and understand their steps.

this article and the website in general helped me a lot over the years and even today its useful to me


nothing fancy, but it will help you to grasp the basics.
 

estradagies

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I am so glad to have joined a platform where folks are willing to take the time to help those of us that are eager to learn but may need a bit of guidance. I truly appreciate every piece of advice and plan to use it to guide my learning:) Thanks!
 

rhawes

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The Complete Practical Encyclopedia of Bonsai: The Essential Step-by-Step Guide to Creating, Growing, and Displaying Bonsai with Over 800 Photographs Hardcover – November 16, 2009
by Ken Norman (Author)
is a great book I have not had the time to read it through seeing as I just bought it off of amazon was recommended by one of the reviews impressed so far with this book though!!!
 

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