Building a Photo Library   2 comments

Over the years, 30 of them in fact, I have taken pictures of my trees. I have no idea why, but I did. I am really glad I did. There is nothing like being able to go back and see what a person felt was great bonsai years ago compared to what one is doing today. It is also a good time to compare photos from previous years and see how the tree is progressing or where it still needs work. Sometimes it is nice to have a virtual representation to work towards. That ideas works extremely well and can keep the artist on track. Of course there is always the educational lag factor. It reads: “Todays great idea will evaporate with tomorrows new found education”. So that vitual if allowed to be kept for any amount of time may proove to be of no use if the idea takes a better route.

So here is a maple purchased in 2010.

a1

It underwent its first pruning. A basic shape was wired into place

a2a

A virtula of where I would like to see the tree. It will take a lot of work on the base to get that kind of flare, it also took seven grafts to get the roots going as well as some branches where they did not exist.

a2c

Currently the tree looks like this. I have a better flare now, and the roots will grow together. the branches are better as I have them where I need them. Only need time now.

a33

I bought this maple in 2003.

002

The tree in 2004

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The tree in 2007

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Virtual done in 2008

virt

The tree in 2008

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The tree in 2009

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The tree in 2011

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The tree in 2013. The tree is getting closer to my image. Ramifying lower branches is getting harder to do each year. It is a comprimise with the top of the tree with it being stronger.

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Winter time is a great time of the year to sit back and take pictures of the trees. Not much is going on and one can bring them out at leisure to make photo’s. Those living in colder climates will have their trees put away for winter, but the tree can be phtographed during warmer periods when danger of frost is low.

I take this photo each year just to remind me of how the trees are progressing each year. The twigs get denser and the branches fuller.

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2003

CHOP10052

2009

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2009

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2013

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2003

CHOP20053

2009

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2009

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2013

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2003

CHOP30054

2009

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2013

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As purchased in 2010

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Tree in 2011

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Tree in 2013

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Posted December 29, 2013 by California Bonsai Art in Styling Trees

2 responses to “Building a Photo Library

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  1. I’ve been doing bonsai for about the same amount of years as you have Al, but only really got serious about photo cataloguing my trees a couple of years ago. I recently came across a folder of pics that dated back to 2004, which was a real eye opener. I looked at my trees a couple of years back and thought…. what am I doing? A lot of trees had faults which I’d always known were there, but too chicken shit to get rid of them, and just tried to ignore them, til one day when I declared to rid myself of these faults once and for all. This is where my photo library came in to its own. Every tree and project was photographed, from raw, and each major stage forward. It’s really rewarding to see the changes made and the progress from month to month, and year to year….exactly how you have shown us here. The virtuals done in photoshop are a massive bonus and styling aid too.
    Happy New Year to you.

  2. I just started photographing my trees, seriously, I had in the past taken a snap shot or two, but no method to the madness. Al you are a bonsai authority, and the Kind of Tridents!

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