Tag Archives: fish

Awesome Aquariums: Winners of the 2015 International Aquatic Plants Layout Contest

#1 (Grand Prize) Takayuki Fukada, Japan / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

While most people are satisfied with giving their pet goldfish some colorful gravel, a plastic plant, and maybe one of those bubbly treasure chests, the entrants to the International Aquatic Plants Layout Contest (IAPLC) have turned aquarium design into an artform. The massive tanks require years of preparation and are focused almost entirely on the aesthetic presentation of plants using only natural elements.

The art of aquascaping is still a fledgling endeavor, first started in the 90s by Japanese wildlife photographer Takashi Amano. The annual IAPLC competition has grown dramatically since, with the 2015 contest seeing 2,545 entries from 69 countries. Japan, China, Brazil, and France dominate the top finalist spots (only 13 entries were from the United States). Finalists were announced in September.

The scoring of each aquarium is based on a complex matrix of six criteria: the recreation of natural habitat for fish; the creator’s technical skills; the long-term maintenance of the habitat; the originality and impression of the layout; presentation of natural layout; and the overall composition and planting ‘balance’. Participants face severe penalties for reconfiguring elements from their own past entries, stealing ideas from others, and using plants that may not last long-term in the environment presented.

This year’s grand prize winner was Takayuki Fukada from Japan with his aquarium titled Longing. You can see our previous coverage of the IAPLC here. All images courtesy IAPLC and AquaA3. (via Vice)

#2 范博文, China / Courtesy IAPLC & AquaA3

#4 Paulo Pacheco, Brazil / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#5 叶毅, China / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#7 刘勇, China / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#8 タナカカツキ, Japan / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#10 Luis Carlos Galarraga, Brazil / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#12 Ana Paula Cinato, Brazil / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#16 张大东, China / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#19 薛海, Taiwan / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#21 Andre Longarco, Brazil / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#22 Olivier Thebaud, France / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

#23 Michaël Leroy, France / Courtesy IAPLC & Aquabase

See related posts on Colossal about , , , .

Stunning New Portraits of Siamese Fighting Fish by Visarute Angkatavanich









Bangkok-based photographer Visarute Angkatavanich (previously) continues to capture some of the most elegant portraits of fish we’ve seen. His intimate, crystal-clear photos of Siamese fighting fish (betta) make it seem as though they are suspended in air instead of water. Angkatavanich recently told Popular Photography that he only started photographing the fish after encountering them for the first time three years ago at a fish show and has since become obsessed with the different species which vary greatly in size, shape, and color patterns. Limited edition prints of his work are now available through La Lanta Fine Art.

See related posts on Colossal about .

Tiny Shrimp-like Organisms Try to Illuminate the Insides of Fish That Eat Them




No, these aren’t light vomiting fish, though you would be forgiven for thinking so because that’s exactly what it looks like. What you’re seeing is the defense mechanism of a tiny crustacean called an ostracod, a shrimp-like organism about 1mm in size that some fish accidentally eat while hunting for plankton. When eaten by a translucent cardinalfish, the ostracod immediately releases a bioluminescent chemical in an attempt to illuminate the fish from the inside, making it immediately identifiable to predators. WHAT. Not wanting to be eaten, the cardinalfish immediately spits out the ostracod, resulting in little underwater fish fireworks. What an incredible game of evolutionary cat and mouse. The clip above is from a new show on BBC Two called Super Senses. If you’re in the UK you can watch it online in HD for a few more days. (via For Science Sake)

New Aquatic Wildlife Painted in Layers of Resin by Keng Lye


With the exception of the repurposed containers, almost every aspect of these artworks by Singapore-based artist Keng Lye (previously) has been rendered in acrylic paint, carefully applied within layers of clear resin. A fish in a plastic bag, a tin can of tadpoles swirling under a frog on a lilypad, and even a completely convincing betta constructed from carved resin and painted with acrylic—each work a strange, lifelike amalgam of painting and sculpture. These are just a few of Lye’s work over the last year, you can see more over on Facebook.










See related posts on Colossal about , , .

Generic Plastic Bubble Wrap Transformed into Mini Goldfish Bowls by Daisuke Akiyama


Created by Tokyo-based designer Daisuke Akiyama, this packaging concept effectively turns the small air pockets of plastic bubble wrap into miniature fish bowls. Akiyama says the novel idea is an attempt to make the irresistible plastic bubbles “psychologically more difficult to pop.” Currently the idea is just a prototype, but supposedly he’s working on marketing the idea to a manufacturer. (via NOTCOT, Spoon & Tamago)

Update: Many have questioned if the fish used in the concept are real. They are not. These are images printed inside plastic bubbles.

See related posts on Colossal about , .

An Abandoned Bangkok Shopping Mall Hides a Fishy Secret

Photo © Jesse Rockwell

In most post-apocalyptic films when the camera pans down the abandoned streets of New York or Tokyo, long after people have disappeared and the buildings have fallen into disrepair, we see nature again thriving. Trees and plants take hold in the sidewalks and wild animals like deer, bears, and lions stalk the ruins left behind by humans. But after descending the staircase at a vacant shopping mall in Bangkok, professional cook and photographer Jesse Rockwell discovered a wholly different take on beasts inheriting the Earth: fish. Specifically exotic koi and catfish, teeming by the thousands in a secret subterranean aquarium. Rockwell shares via his blog:

New World shopping mall, a four storey former shopping mall. Originally constructed as an eleven storey building. It was found to be in breach of old town Bangkok’s four storey limit on building heights. The top seven floors were demolished to adhere to building codes in 1997. In 1999 the mall burned due to suspected arson committed by a competitor in the area. The disaster resulted in several casualties, and the building has remained abandoned ever since. Not having a roof, the basement floor remains under several feet of water year round.

At some point in the early 2000s an unknown person began introducing a small population of exotic Koi and Catfish species. The small population of fish began to thrive and the result is now a self-sustained, and amazingly populated urban aquarium.

What an amazing discovery. It makes you wonder what else lurks in abandoned places around the world? You can see more of Rockwell’s photography over on 500px and on his website, Taste of the Road. (via James Theophane, The Verge)

Photo © Jesse Rockwell

Photo © Jesse Rockwell

Photo © Jesse Rockwell

Photo © Jesse Rockwell

Photo © Jesse Rockwell

Photo © Jesse Rockwell

See related posts on Colossal about , , .

Artist ‘Roadsworth’ Continues to Transform Streets, Buildings and Sidewalks into a Visual Playground

Fleurs de lin



Canada geese

Fish net

Orebro Bird House


Montreal artist Roadsworth (previously) continues to make his mark on the streets of Montreal by introducing elements of wildlife and humor onto an asphalt canvas. In his latest pieces we see flocks of geese swooping down tree-lined streets and schools of sardines move with the flow of pedestrian traffic (or end up wedged inside a tin can), unexpected symbols against an urban backdrop.

This year marks a decade since Roadsworth was charged with 53 counts of public mischief, after which he received considerable public support and was let go with a slap on the wrist. Since then the artist has created artwork for municipalities, exhibitions, and arts festivals around the world. You can see much more on his website, and he also has a book.

See related posts on Colossal about , , , .

Page 1 of 41234