Knowing bonsai rules will give you more creativity!
There are rules to create and grow bonsai, and following those rules makes your bonsai more artistic as it grows.
Those rules are for the purpose of making your bonsai live longer, healthy, creating certain styles, general caring, etc but of course adding your own idea or imagination to your bonsai art makes it more creativity. So not only following the rules but adding your own creativity knowing why each rule exists will make your bonsai life more enjoyable.
Read more about Bonsai style rules
There are several things to keep in mind to style bonsai. (reading Bonsai branch rules may help you to understand which branches should be removed.)
1. check your tree from four different sides and decide which side should be the front.
2. check which branches you want to remove.
3. before you remove branches you must know what kind of branches should be removed.
3. when removing a branch you shouldn't cut all of it first. (Cut the remaining for a better way. Ex, you can make it a Jin.)
4. the balance of the shape is always important
5. A way to make the balance, you may follow this basic technique: cut the long branches and leave the short ones.
As each style has its own rules, You may want to apply them when styling your own bonsai.
To decide which branches to trim is to know what branch looks bad basically, read more about Bonsai branch rules
This is one of the most important rules because it directly affects to the tree visibility and it makes you think how you should trim your bonsai so it looks more beautiful.
One of the most important things to grow bonsai is trimming and you must always think which branches should be remained and which ones to be removed.
Deciding the branches to trim depends on the knowledge you have. Trimming Without knowing the branch rules makes huge difference to the bonsai visibility and affects the growth of both bonsai and its other good looking branches.
Nebari - Surface root rules
the roots that appear on the surface are called nabari and they have very important rules when making bonsai styles
read more about nabari rules
This mainly affects to the shape of the tree. When you style your bonsai there are several guidelines you need to follow
Since this includes different rules and needs to be mentioned about each bonsai style, it is almost impossible to describe everything in one category so please read style rules.
Below are common bonsai trunk rules
Trunk curving like a hump (called "hatomune" means "pigeon breast" in Japanese). If this shape appears in the front of the tree, the front side needs to be reconsidered and changed.
Trunks spreading in two directions should never be U shape. U shape trunk is considered to be a bad shape. They must be wired to V shape.