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This work had the most visual surprise among the top winning works in this contest. This is not the first time to see a mirror used in a layout. We have seen it in the past. However, this work used the visual effect with a mirror to the maximum. Although opinions might be divided about using a mirror, it is important to pay attention to the creator's excellent skills to create the well-thought out layout composition as well as the tricky expression with the use of a mirror. In regards to the choice of fish, Inlecypris auropurpurea is primarily chosen. The pattern of the fish brilliantly matches with the reflection of small branches on the mirror. That's where the creator's aesthetic sense shines. A judge from Chinese Taipei, Mr. Huang chose this work as his Best Aquarium, and his evaluation comment is as follows.

IAPLC 2020 Gallery - Look back history - World Ranking 0002 - Gold Prize

Undying 

Author: Steven Chong / United States

Aquarium Size/W120×D50×H50 (cm)

Aquatic Plants

Eleocharis parvula

Lilaeopsis brasiliensis

Pilularia globulifera

Hydrocotyle verticillata

Taxiphyllum sp.

Riccardia sp.

Hemianthus callitrichoides 'Cuba'

Micranthemum sp. 'Monte Carlo'

Myriophyllum matogrossense

Myriophyllum sp. 'Guyana'

Microsorum sp. 'Trident'

Hygrophila pinnatifida

Anubias sp. various

Bucephalandra sp.

Rotala sp.

Microcarpaea minima

Helanthium tenellum

Fissidens fontanus

Fish & Invertebrates

Inlecypris auropurpurea

AWARDS

World Ranking 0002 Gold Prize IAPLC 2020

2nd place & Most Innovative AGA 2020 Aquatic Garden 220 ~ 320L

Comments

This year was extremely unique because we did not receive results by mail, but instead by stream. On one hand, I really liked the concept because it meant a fair experience shared by all- where in previous years, we folks in Japan were lucky to get our results first. On the other hand, it was extremely nerve-wracking for someone aiming at the top ranks, because you would be both praying that your name didn't appear YET but also praying that your name would appear SOMEWHERE. The night of the Youtube stream I was up with 3 screens on- main living room TV set to Youtube for my wife and daughters to watch. I had one laptop set up and joined into a facebook group with the Tokyo Aquascaping Union (TAU), and another laptop set up joined into a different face- book group with the The Aquascaper's Collective (TAC) in North America. It was hectic with all that going on, and impossible to deeply appreciate/analyze any of the layouts that appeared, but it was a high energy and deeply communal way to enjoy the festival of IAPLC presentation. Going into the top 7, with my name not appearing yet, of course I was wracked with nerves-but we had also gauged the overall level of the works so far. Masashi Ono said, "Ah, don't worry about it Steven, at this point you won't be dropping out. Let's look forward to seeing it!" A part of me agreed with that and was already settling in, but another part was still on high nerves that my name might not appear at all! Of course when my name did appear in the gold rank-it was an incredible rush. The TAC group erupted in cheers! The TAU group had more of a "See, nothing to worry about congrats" vibe. My daughters and wife rushed over, and I was surrounded by warm congratulations. My phone also started exploding with messages too, and I picked up an incoming telephone call from Hungary to give the Green Aqua team an interview right away. Definitely, the IAPLC results were a fantastic event, and I was filled with gratitude and joy. Also, thank you to the 900 new folks who subscribed to my Youtube Channel, SteveScapes, and 500 who followed me on Instagram after the YouTube stream! It is an honor! But... of course there is also the edge of disappointment to come so close to #1. I won't give up on the Grand Prize. Yeo, Josh, Fukada-san, Ono-san, Mr. Prayogi, be ready because I'm not going to lose

Comment of Mr. Huang Yu-Fa (Chinese Taipei)

This work looks fresh and natural because of the layout composition and placement of materials. The simplicity and solid look are effectively expressed with innovative techniques instead of using a stacking up method. Although there is no sand at the bottom of the aquarium tank, the shape of a river is effectively created with the reflection of light. This technique is very interesting and a good point to learn. Among many works, this work is my favorite because of the unique and solid look. I gave my Best Aquarium to this innovative work

Comment of Mr Kris Weinhold

The mirrored reflections in this aquascape are truly fantastic!

Comment of Mr Andre Longarco

Very interesting work that arouses curiosity with the effect of the mirror. Apart from this technique which is not new I don't see much hardscape and plant development work.
Undoubtedly it is a good job but I see disconnections between the force vectors and little fluidity in the hardscape. Each group of logs has its own and unnatural meaning.
The high point of the work is the center of the vanishing point where the composition of the plants is very natural.
Speaking of plant health as it is almost all mosses and carpet plants their health could be much better for a aquascaping contest.

Comment of Mr Juan Puchades

A step further a new way of creating aquariums without losing traditional concepts but evolving in techniques with the use of a reflection that evokes the surface of the water. Controversial or not its use is a very effective technique that in this assembly combines perfectly with the powerful yet light structure. Simply wonderful.

Comment of Mr Masashi Ono

Very impressive layout!
We have such strange feelings from the mirror effect.
Wood composition and fish selection & position are perfect.
I regret the plants have not grown enough...

 

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