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Sunday, August 22, 2010

Artist 40: Takashi Amano

Mr. Amano is a different type of artist from what most people are used to. He's a skilled photographer, but he's most well known for his aquascapes. In fact, he single handedly invented a new way to aquascape an aquarium that has taken the world by storm in recent years. This method is called Iwagumi, or the Nature Aquarium.

Takashi Amano Instpiratiebron Pictures, Images and Photos

Takashi Amano Pictures, Images and Photos

He was born in 1954 in Niigata, Japan. Ever since 74 he's been going on excursions in the Amazon, rain forests in Borneo, and West Africa. He also takes frequent trips to untouched forests in Japan. He takes photographs at these locations, focusing on the beauty of untouched nature with large format cameras (8" x 20" film). He exhibits these photos all over the world trying to encourage people to find see the wonders of places where mankind has not left its mark. These photos are meant to preserve these pristine locations for generations to come, just incase we destroy them.

Amano travels the world giving lectures about his photography and his experiences in these wild section of the planet. He also emphasized the importance of tree-planting programs and why they need support. He also does underwater photography in exotic locations. In fact, he won the Fuji Film Nature Photo Contest in 1992 for his photo of an Asian sheepshead wrasse.

Takashi has left an impact in more than the nature photography scene. As stated above, he is revered as an icon in the aquarium hobby. His planted tanks have encouraged thousands, possibly millions to take a chance in using live plants in their aquariums in order to create a more natural take and bring a little piece (sometimes massive chunk) of nature into their home. Most of his aquascapes are not what most people think of when they think "fish tank", they look more like a mountain landscape that was submerged in crystal clear water, and the fish are flying through the valleys.

Takashi Amano Pictures, Images and Photos

This man is so revered in the hobby that he actually had a small algae eating shrimp, which he uses extensively in his aquascapes, named after him. This is the Amano shrimp (Cardinia japonica).

Amano Shrimp Pictures, Images and Photos

Amano has influenced me for quite a while now. I now view my aquariums as a 3-dimensional canvas to paint with aquatic plants, driftwood, decorative rocks, invertebrates, and fish. As an artist, I approach everything artistically, so why not do the same thing with living things and give my pets a gorgeous habitat to live in?

Make sure to check out his website here;
http://www.amanotakashi.net/

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