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Rule of thirds


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So, I haven't seen this as a recent topic on the forum and Cammeron got me thinking....

I use the rule of thirds almost naturally in a lot of what I do. I was trained in it both in photography and culinary school, and the first time I set up an aquascape I was real impressed with myself until I realized I was only doing something almost ingrained in me at this point.


I'd like to have a discussion about who (if any of you) use this concept whether you know you do or not. Anyone have any examples?

FTS 1-4-15

The above tank applies the rule of thirds when viewing from the top, either side panel, the front panel, and both half portions (left and right) of the front panel as well. Being that this is not really an uncommon design, I am also wondering how many people have gone with something similar not really realizing what they are applying?

Such was the case with my "old incomplete volcano cone" Design in my first tank....It wasn't until looking at it through a lens and serching for "the thirds" I said to myself "well, look what your brilliant dumbass did!" the "1/3 lines" fit into place almost perfectly no matter where I looked in from! It became a standard design feature for me instantly and I haven't designed a 'scape without laying out thirds since...only now I do it on purpose!

I also do this with color! You are hard pressed to find an imbalance of color for long in my tank. It does happen, but is usually quickly adjusted with either additional coral, or moving a coral or two. There is as much of any color in each 1/3 of the tank (or at least that's what the law of averages tends to show over time).

Example: I currently have 2 blue peices one in the top third, and one bottom third; both are on the right half. The next blue coral I get will go in the middle third from top to bottom, on the left side; thus bring the rule of thirds back into balance.

How do YOU use the rule of thirds in your tank?

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This looks fun!

I do this when I'm taking pictures but I didn't know it was a thing. I have always thought it made the picture interesting. I've never even thought of creating a scene on purpose though!

This is a recent picture of my new aquascape. The goal was to create tall structures to utilize the height of the tank, improve water flow, add coral space, and have open space for fish. There is 6" or more all around the tank in between the rocks and the glass to make cleaning easier and give the fish plenty of room to swim the perimeter. I drew some lines on the picture for fun.

Please excuse the mess. I'm still battling Ugly Tank Syndrome. sad.png


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Pretty much everything I learned in college about photography ended up applying to everything in my life lol.

The Fibonacci sequence is one of my favorites. Leading lines as well.

I unknowingly follow a lot of the rules of photo composition when decorating reptile tanks.. My room.. Aquariums.. Drawing, etc etc. Even parking my car at car meets haha it has to be in the right spot for a good shot.

It seems our eyes naturally follow these paths and thats why it works so well in composition. When i look at thing my eye doesn't go straight for the middle. Pretty weird but I guess its how were wired.


Dirty betta tank. Not exactly on the money but it was unintentional. Things smack in the middle look so weird to me unless it just.. Works. That sounded dumb but im sure you get the drift

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I am far more likely to use the golden or fibinachi ratio (1.6 : 1) to establish a single asymetrical focal point or divide the aquascaping into two seperate sections that are asymetrical. The corals in this system have overgrown somewhat but you can still see the valley seperating the two sections:


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