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More Journals? discuss.....

a1Matt

Member
Joined
10 Mar 2008
Messages
2,497
Location
Bromley
I see what you mean Mark. I never thought about it from the perspective of getting feedback for myself. That is real good food for thought.

I have also sat here thinking about the hobby advancing\getting bigger and I think you have hit the nail on the head with that one word 'sharing'.

I think it is not just limited to journals and the forum per se, but more public sharing as well.
Stuff like your diplay tank at MA, meetups at FOF, and the like.

Getting back to the journal discussion... I wonder what will have more impact on the hobby - your tank at MA or the journal of your tank at MA?

I would guess that both work in their own way giving different things to different people.
 

LondonDragon

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Staff member
Joined
21 Feb 2008
Messages
11,251
Location
London
I like journals and you can see from mine where I go into deep detail of what I have in the tank, what I change, my dosing, maintnance, etc....

When I started in the planted scene I read hundreds of journals, some good some bad some totally pointless but I read them none the less and you always pick up something from them.

My aim was to get plants to grow properly and algae free, and straight away I found that my tank was inadequate for what I needed, many upgrades later and I am getting there, and if I had the finances to back me up I know what I would be doing now with my tanks, but I have to take it easy and one step at a time.

I created a journal not so much as to get feedback but more to try and explain how I got from the start and how I achieved my final tank and share my bad and good experiences, in the hope that when someone reads my journal they will learn from my mistakes and not make them, and also if I inspire one person to start a planted tank then I am very happy about that. From the comments I get I know I have inspired many people with no knowledge of planted tanks, like myself when I started to get into the hobby, to start their own and have better success than me :)

I don't mind any sort of reply and I get many PM's from users asking for help, I always try and help everyone and when I can't I point them here to the forum where there are more people with superior knowledge than me, in the end I am just a noob and can only help with stuff I have experienced myself.

Sharing is great and photos help a lot, but some people just don't have the time or perfer to display the final product and not how they got there, in the end its their choice but I like to know when I see a great step up if the person had any issues with the tank to get to that stage, that is more helpfull than a nice looking final scape with some Photoshop touched up photos.

Keep those journals comming ;)
 

Aeropars

Member
Joined
9 Jul 2007
Messages
792
Location
Leicester
saintly said:
i'm guilty od the artsy fartsy stuff :oops: but...

SteveUK said:
a section which I think doesn't get too much traffic at the moment)

as you sayed, if i posted my images in that section, those images may not get seen so i just post them on my journals.

But then again if the contents not in the right place then its never going to improve. Theres always going to be higher traffic areas on forums. All we can do is encourge people to view the less trafficed areas.
 

Mark Evans

Expert
Joined
13 Jun 2008
Messages
6,484
Location
newark notts.
Aeropars said:
But then again if the contents not in the right place then its never going to improve. Theres always going to be higher traffic areas on forums. All we can do is encourge people to view the less trafficed areas.

true, but my images are a part of my journals to some degree. i go on sites where if you post in the wrong(but right) area your stuff never gets looked at. people need to see others work.whether it's in the right or wrong section.

BTW nicely put LD
 

Themuleous

Member
Joined
6 Jul 2007
Messages
4,124
Location
Aston, Oxfordshire
I must admit its a great shame that the best aquascapers we have on here dont run journals for fear of not then being able to enter them into a competition. Why did we all get into this hobby? Most probably from others already in the hobby and seeing their work. Seems a huge shame that that spirit of sharing isn't happening as much due to competitions, which ultimately mean nothing in my eyes anyway, the respect of my peers in the hobby is all the satisfaction I need, not a position in some competition results league table.

The forum is the poorer for it, unfortunately.

Sam

PS - I will at that I am more than aware of the time commitments people have, but a photo of a tank every now and then doesn't really take more then 10 minutes to post :)
 

Joecoral

Member
Joined
24 Nov 2007
Messages
686
Location
Carmarthenshire
My opinion is that, as many have stated, the better / most prominant aquascapers here are reluctant to post images incase they decide to enter it into a competition at some point, which I find quite disappointing as I love to read the journals and loom at the pictures from stage 1 to final scape. I understand the need for this however, as well as the fact that everyone has a life outside of UKAPS and various other constraints prevent them from being able to invest the large amounts of time required to keep a journal updated.
That said, I am not in this hobby to compete, I am in it mainly for myself and my own personal enjoyment, but also to share my acheivements and problems with others, in the same way I developed the passion for it in the first place from reading the journals and looking at the pictures posted by others.
Therefore I for one would welcome the creation of more journals with open arms.
My £0.02
 

scottturnbull

Member
Joined
30 Oct 2008
Messages
132
I'm not an aquascaper either. The main reason for doing a journal is so other people can benefit. Rarely does everything go smoothly when setting up a tank. We all run into problems from time to time. If it's a problem you haven't encountered before, the internet is fine. But there's usually too much contradictory advice. Journals have the advantage of providing a history. A history is much more reliable than some random post on a forum saying 'do this' or 'do that'. You can see with your own eyes the decisions that have been made, and the results. Whether they are good or bad decisions, they are useful to someone.
 

Ady34

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Staff member
Joined
27 Jul 2011
Messages
4,813
Location
Co. Durham
Thought it might be interesting to hear current views with 71 pages of journal heaven now available to access!?

For me the journals sub forum is what it's all about, you get everything in here, first timers to professionals and everyone in between....
when I first found ukaps it was the journals section that got me hooked, access to hundreds of planted tanks, all the information I could ever wish for to try and help me achieve my very own a slice of green. I loved the photos especially, seeing a scape from the ground up. I spent hours in here drooling and dreaming, it was great to see the variety of aquascape styles, and follow people's journey from start to finish, warts and all. It was great to see the ups and downs, its easy to see the 'final image' published somewhere and assume its not achievable 'for me', but seeing the transitions throughout a journal, to see how failings can be turned around, how it can go from bad to great again and all the time being told and shown how to do it was inspiring for me. I remember one of Tony Swinneys scapes being brought back from some hellish bba and I couldn't believe it. It inspired me and enabled me to go from wanting a healthy planted tank to actually getting one, learning how to grow the plants rather than the algae.....there's always more to learn and ways to improve and issues to solve but that's what I love about the journals they show you how.
Internet searches offer images and snippets, but to find a site like this with so much knowledge right there was awesome.....I was like a kid in a sweet shop....I still am :)

Cheerio,
Ady.
 

niru

Member
Joined
13 Sep 2010
Messages
323
Location
Basel, Switzerland
Hi All

I too agree that journals are great way to see, learn and appreciate. Not just for the readers but also a steep learning curve for the guys maintaining them.
Learning from each others' mistakes and successes is a very satisfying way to advance the hobby for oneself and others.

However I sometimes get a feeling that there are simply too many one-line posts simply congratulating the scape-maker. Rather than having the "like" button, many posts dont contribute anything substantial, only a "great job mate" kind of posts. While they are great to show your genuine appreciation, such posts dont add anything "more" other than lengthening the journal to umpteen number of pages. Digging out real progress from these posts can be taxing at times.

I am not discouraging, but hey, this is simply what I feel when I get a bit irritated on a bad day.... Guess there could be some protocol about commenting on the journal entries....

My 2 cents.

cheers
 

jack-rythm

Member
Joined
21 Jul 2012
Messages
1,551
Location
Ashburton, Devon
I think the encouragement from a positive comment helps just as much. It takes a lot of courage for a begginer to post photos up of their hard worked tank and it really pays off when you get people commenting, even if it is just 'nice one looks really great' this is all part of the encouragement process, all though I see your point that dissecting relevant information is tough I still believe that it's a great factor of what ukaps is all about. It shows a great understanding of being supportive towards our fellow members and I feel if we didn't do this as much journals would become a thing of the past in the not so near future due to the lack of acknowledgment beginners would receive.. Although it is taxing to read positive comments on a bad day, I would just simply put this down to having a bad day and embrace all the positivity that hums around ukaps :)

Sent from my GT-I9100 using Tapatalk 2
 

niru

Member
Joined
13 Sep 2010
Messages
323
Location
Basel, Switzerland
Although it is taxing to read positive comments on a bad day, I would just simply put this down to having a bad day and embrace all the positivity that hums around ukaps :)

Thats why I am hooked to the site during work hours so that I am inspired by the time I get back to the tank in the evening.. :)
 

tim

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Joined
22 Aug 2011
Messages
3,818
Location
Middlesex.
I'm with ady on this the journal section is where it's at. So much info, pic's, inspiration, advice, ideas to borrow to make more of your own tanks, I've only kept fish for 3 years plants for two and was plagued by small tanks and bad advice then I discoverd ukaps and boy it turns your world upside down the knowledge,advice, ideas and aquascapes shared on this forum is immense, it's the only forum I use :) it's hard to run a journal sometimes but gotta be worth it to look back on your achievements and see if you reach your goals, for me without journals I'd have nothing to do when I'm bored at work, so to all the members that run them, your time and effort is appreciated, thanks :)
 

jimwalsh

Member
Joined
4 Sep 2012
Messages
187
Location
Kings Langley
I am far from being an aquascaper, but the encouragement and positive comments and constructive criticism from members on my journal has been invaluable and has given me lots of confidence and support.

I would encourage all beginners to start a journal as it can be very useful to get you started and keep you motivated when problems arise.

This is my first ever fish tank and UKAPS has been a lifeline of sense, science and support. From the excellent guides to the matrix busting wisdom of Ceg, UKAPS is a unique resource that combines a welcoming newbie-friendly vibe with a professional moderation team who should be very proud of what they have created and maintained.

To my mind the journals section is the most important area here both for seeing the art of the possible and getting feedback on your own efforts. Well done everyone!
 

Iain Sutherland

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7 Jul 2011
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Cambridge
It's all about the journals for me, very informative and inspirational. Had it not been for journals from mark, viktor, George, stu etc (there are loads more....sorry :)) then there is now way I would had the motivation to continue.
Only things I'd like to see is sub forums within the journals... Hi tech, low tech, size etc just makes finding the inspiration relevant to your tank easier. But then I guess I would have missed all those random finds? ?
Good time fillers at the mo too.
 

LondonDragon

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21 Feb 2008
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London
Nice way to drag an old post from the dead :) My first post here was the first post on my journal "The never ending" was only to show something I had done in the past, and then it kind of inspired me to carry on with the scape and moved it towards something else and that journal ended up going for years! lol was a great journey, provided help along the way and was pointed in the right direction also. Its always good to get constructive feedback, but remember the "Like" feature has only been here since 17th December 2012! But encouragement to the beginner is good as it pushes them on to do better, if you don't reply cause you don't think you have anything of value to contribute then the topic starter just thinks their work is no good and might just give up! So likes is good and a little encouragement goes a long way too ;) I would not be here otherwise!
 

Ady34

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27 Jul 2011
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Co. Durham
Only things I'd like to see is sub forums within the journals... Hi tech, low tech, size etc just makes finding the inspiration relevant to your tank easier. But then I guess I would have missed all those random finds? ?
Yeah, it's a nice notion, but there's so much there down to individual interpretation and so much variety. Hopefully though the new 'tags' feature will help searches when people start using them lots. Stuff like tagging the hardscape materials, substrates etc should make finding more specific inspiration easier, maybe we could tag say 90cm or something too for rough sizes :)
It's great having a look through the journals though, you find some real gems!
 

Ravenswing

Member
Joined
14 Dec 2012
Messages
153
Location
Finland
I love to watch "AGA-level tanks" as to say because they are such a juwels and pure art, but IMO the salt of the hobby is see how ordinary hobbyist find their way to make progress with their home tanks. Journals are just right tool for this. Journals allows relaxed way to communicate to each other and everybody can see (from pics, hopefully) what are we talking about. I see journals as an extended way to play with your tanks and this hobby wich we normally do behind walls where no one else can see. This being said, Im always impressed, for example, Mark Evans photos, they do show the real beauty of our plants and fish!
 
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