Robert's Demo in Manila

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Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  dexworks on Mon May 07, 2012 6:17 pm

Dear IBC friends,

Last Sunday I was fortunate enough to be able to attend a demo/workshop by Robert Steven, I instantly felt admiration for Robert and his work, the moment he started talking. His passion for the art is so contagious that I found myself riveted to my seat. I also met one of the most artistic members here in IBC which is Jun, saw some of his "IBC babies" on exhibit and let me tell you that the photos he previously posted here in IBC does not do his works any justice - you have to see them in person to really feel the magic, especially the "Buddha" and the "Kite" . I also saw some great bonsai, penjing and suiseki on display. Unfortunately, I only have a few pictures of the exhibited trees, as I was trying to learn as much as I could from Robert.

I'd like to share the photos of Robert's demo, I hope it's fine with everyone, so here goes...

A Tamarind in the usual forest style:



The master was just a blur, I just left for a few minutes to try and get some pictures of the exhibited trees while it's not raining, and when I came back he's almost done with the set-up. I can't believe this guy, he works so fast!



Robert beaming over his creation:



Robert, the finished forest, and a happy me:




It was truly a very great weekend, seeing Robert in action and learning from him in person is an experience I'll never forget.

Thanks and best regards,

Derick

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Robert Steven on Tue May 08, 2012 5:58 am

Hi Derick,

Thanks for sharing. It was really a great pleasure to meet you all there, great fun and great exhibition.

This was indeed the largest demo work I have ever had. I was quite shock for the first time when I saw the giant pot and the rock they were providing, the total weight was over 100 kgs. I was just wondering how they will transport it home after the show... affraid

Hope to meet you again in October in Pampanga..

Robert Steven
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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  dexworks on Tue May 08, 2012 1:58 pm

Robert,

It was really great to meet you and learn from you, I'll be looking forward to your next visit here...

I'm sure they will find a way to transport your creation, I know I would! Very Happy

You should have heard the reaction of the audience when you were setting up the Bantigue, hehehe, they were so concerned about the roots and the tree's survival... I personally stay away from Bantigue because I do not want to condone the removal of these wonderful trees from their natural habitat since they are severely threatened from over collection, but the lessons I learned about ramification and structure will definitely be an invaluable tool as I train my deciduous and tropical trees.

Thanks Robert, for your time and generosity in sharing your knowledge.

All the best!

Derick

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  fiona on Tue May 08, 2012 2:54 pm

This is undoubtedly a nice creation. Would have been nice to see the step by step to see exactly how he puts that landscape together.


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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Robert Steven on Tue May 08, 2012 3:44 pm

Thanks Derick,

Hopefully they picked up my message on how to maintain the Pemphis to avoid the dying back and how to explore the character of tropical tree rather than designing Pemphis like junipers.

Fiona..here you are....

Looking at the 2 meter size of the pot and the giant rocks they were preparing, and knowing there are more and more people in Philippine like Rock-planting landscape bonsai, so I knew I should do something monumental and explaining the concept.
It seems easy to make landscape bonsai, or forest, grouping, rock-planting or whatever you call it, but in fact it's not that easy if you want to obtain a good result with nice panoramic view. There are so many aesthetic aspects involved..the compositioning concept, visual illusion and balance, perspective rule, proportion, natural phenomena, plant morphology..and ofcourse personal imaginary skill...

Ofcourse one can make any panoramic creation as he wants, but without mastering the concept, normally it will end up unnatural look, out of proportion, like a garden prototype instead of a piece of nice view of nature.

I started by combining 2 pcs of largest rock to form the focal point, but as I was going to make a bonsai creation and not rock landscape, so this giant rock should not compete with the tree for eye catching..trees should play the dominant role and rocks were simply medium...



Here was the first tree I put on to create the monumental focal point and to counter balance the heavy rock image. To avoid the "lonely" feeling of the single tree, I would put another smaller tree beside it...



In order to draw the scaling image, I set another group of trees slighly on the back; and at the same time started to create the perspective...



Another attempt to reduce the dominance of the giant rock, I put another small tree in front to cover part of the rock..and at the same time, the foreground was created. Then another group of trees was set to form the composition of panorama...



Here it was... I also worked on the land contour to simulate the nature...



Another piece of rock was place in between the trees. I called this the "Bridging element" to bridge the tree element and the rock element, so they didn't look separated, but more integrated in unity...



Another piece of rock was placed at the back to create the depth and to create gaps illusion for perspective. Now the smaller tree at the back even looked further. Creating perspective illusion in such bonsai style is one of the most important aspects.



Now I started to trim the foliation....



Here was the final result....



In the closing remark, this gentleman..from the Education Committee was counting the number of the trees used...1..2..3...ops..there were 10... affraid He said it was not suppose to be even number for grouping bonsai...and he also said that the trees I used were too big and had stolen the beauty of the rock...

I answered with friendly smile because I didn't have chance to explain further as the session was closed..so what is your comment ?



Last edited by Robert Steven on Wed May 09, 2012 6:49 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  fiona on Tue May 08, 2012 3:53 pm

Thanks Robert. It is a marvellous work.

Now, if you or someone else can add a commentary to those pics (explaining what is happening in each step and giving any other information you can - such as the vision before you started etc) then I will more than happily move it back to the Progressions forum.

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Guest on Tue May 08, 2012 5:18 pm

Robert Steven wrote:




I am really embarrassed by this last photo Robert!!! my sincere apology to you. I filed my resignation letter yesterday on this organization because of this event and the other issue that you know of. I hope they accept it. I am looking forward to the day when old man like this guy tried to be "wise man rather than just an old man". How many trees? 12????hehehe

Again my apology.

Same reason why I am not posting this event. But you can...But please inform them you didn't select the winners.

regards,
jun Mad

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Robert Steven on Tue May 08, 2012 6:18 pm

jun wrote:

I am really embarrassed by this last photo Robert!!! my sincere apology to you. I filed my resignation letter yesterday on this organization because of this event and the other issue that you know of. I hope they accept it. I am looking forward to the day when old man like this guy tried to be "wise man rather than just an old man". How many trees? 12????hehehe

Again my apology.

Same reason why I am not posting this event. But you can...But please inform them you didn't select the winners.

regards,
jun Mad

What Jun..??? affraid You resign from the organization ? You don't need to...your community need someone like you to make the change, maybe not through being in the organization, but as a member through your creative works. Trust me, the good days will come..I had gone through such painful process, it took me 6 years...

You don't need to appology, that's fine with me, this was not the worst I ever experienced. However, I am not in a position to say anything; but I will not let this happen again if I do come again in October.

Hope this will not discourage your creativity...

BTW, Fiona...I will add some text tomorrow, it's over midnite now...good night ! Sleep

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Robert Steven on Wed May 09, 2012 6:50 am

Hi IBC buddies..I havde added some text to the above pictures..hope this help...

Robert Steven
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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  marcus watts on Wed May 09, 2012 7:28 am

Hi,

its interesting to see the approaches that can be used, and the size of material hosting clubs want to use! Shocked - it seems a local 'expert' wanted to have the last word though ! Evil or Very Mad

I must admit to feeling the main tree is too big to go on the big rock - now the rock is a small rock in appearance as it is dwarfed by a tree, but that is just the instant thought that comes in my head from glancing at the picture, and there is going to be a really good reason why it's planted exactly where it is.

Jun - - -there are many outspoken experts that want to hear nothing but their own voice - quite often they are older too, and usually the resident club expert ! Dont back down though as new blood and new ideas are essential to the progression of the hobby and the normal members of a club will gain more ffrom you in an organisation than out of it.

Water fells mountains eventually - one drip at a time.

regards Marcus


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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Poink88 on Wed May 09, 2012 8:48 am

Steven. Like Jun, I too would be embarrassed for someone treating my guest that way but you are confident and aware enough to take it for what it really is (good for you) and I know most people there see what the "old man" was doing.

Jun. I agree with Steven and Marcus. Change is best made from within...it may not be easy but someone got to do it. Don't "surrender" by going away or they would have won. Please don't waste this opportunity...not a lot of people can have it.

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Robert Steven on Wed May 09, 2012 9:37 am

Maybe it was my fault. I spent too long explaining the Pemphis, then we didn't have enought time to explain the whole concept in details (Jun put a stop watch and told me that I did this in 47 minutes.. Very Happy ) especially on the "Assymetrical Balance" principle, the aesthetic reason behind the "odd number" rule I normally talk about.

In any visual arts, painting, sculpture, interior design, graphic design etc..we are always told to set the assymetrical balance composition; because this is believed to be the best composition, more dynamic and less boring. Then..I don't know who started to put this aesthetic principle into so called a rule in grouping bonsai design to always use odd number of trees. He/she simply thought that odd number would always form an assymetrical composition; in fact not. Odd number can form symetrical composition just like even number can form assymetrical composition.
So the point is not the number, but is on how we set the composition. In this demo, although I used 10 (I never counted), but the overall composition is balance in assymetrical form with clear focal point.
Who will count a grouping bonsai consists of 100 trees..yet, there are no rules in art; and if there are, breaking rules in art is not a crime ! Laughing

Robert Steven
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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  dorothy7774 on Wed May 09, 2012 5:11 pm

Very nice creation, Robert! The tall tree is perfectly positioned. That way it will never compete with the rock, and we do know the tree will grow. Also, placing the tree on the rock gave ample space for creating perspective and proportion and growth, a flaw very obvious with the original forest planting (the original material). I like everything.

Best,
Dorothy

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Ferdie * on Thu May 10, 2012 2:51 am

To Dex, thanks for posting the said event, i was invited in by JUn, unfortunately i wasnt able to read it earlier the said notice, i really hate to missed that chance.

To Robert, thank you for coming over to our country and humbly share your expertise, it was a onetime chance that i missed to meet you, hope i meet you the next time around, that was a great creation you got there, , and one day if you really dont mind i would like to request for some guidance and advice with few of my stuff. please come back, Ok.

To Jun, i hope the said resignation of yours will not be accepted, because Bro, your positive and creative attitude towards this hobby of ours can surely make a change, please don't resign, you are such a big asset for the improvement of that organization.

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Robert Steven on Thu May 10, 2012 3:17 am

Thanks Dorothy...

Hi Ferdie. Most probably I will come again to Pampanga in October and hope to meet you there. And you are damn right about Jun...

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  dexworks on Thu May 10, 2012 12:40 pm

Ferdie,

I almost didn't make it to the workshop because it was a rest day for me, and the previous week was so hectic... I'm glad I was able to attend though... maybe we could meet up with Jun and the rest of the IBC gang this coming October for the next event...

Jun,

Never mind the issues with the club, just stick it out and I'm sure you could be a positive influence to those guys... ( easier said than Done though, hehehe...)

Robert,

Thank you for being such a sport, If it were me, I wouldn't have the kept my cool...
I'll look forward to meeting you again this October...

Regards,

Derick

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

Post  Ferdie * on Tue May 15, 2012 12:48 am

Ya sure Bro, at least we set date perhaps for me to schedule it, and its cool to meet all the local ibc gang, specially Jun and Ka Pabling, my mentor, maybe we can acquire a little souvenir from them both talent and materials Very Happy Razz bounce What do you think...hehe Laughing I hope both of them are reading this drunken Wink

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Re: Robert's Demo in Manila

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