A Simple Line

comments 6
Abstract / Impressionism / Inspiration / Photography


March 7, 1982. Point Lobos, California coast. My wife and I were out for a glorious day of photography back in the day when you could still get into the Point Lobos preserve on a Sunday without tripping over sixteen other people in as many square feet. (I’m reminded of something Yogi Berra supposedly said about a restaurant: “Nobody goes there anymore because it’s too crowded.”)

I went back to the car to change film and while taking a quiet moment I noticed the reflection of the door frame in the side-view mirror. I opened the lens all the way to f/1.8, focused on the glint of sun on the chrome trim, and on the last exposure of the roll I made my first deliberately abstract photo.

You see the image above. It is what it is, but that’s not the point.

What struck me immediately was the sharp line against amorphous color. Just enough form for definition—an anchor—but not too much. The rest of the image contrasts by lack of definition. It’s easy to overthink this and get all yin/yang and form-and-void about it. Or you can just enjoy it. I chose the latter.

This is close to the ultimate:

The Author

California based fine-art photographer featuring abstract, impressionist, and minimalist seascapes — near and distant — and floral-based images. Fine-art photography can be seen at www.amagaphoto.com All original images on this blog are copyright 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 Michael Scandling. All rights reserved. No images on this site may be copied, duplicated, reused, published, or re-purposed in any way without express permission from the copyright owner, Michael Scandling.


  1. Pingback: AMAGA Blog — Just a Year Ago Today – AMAGA Photography Blog

  2. Yeah, this is a bit before we got acquainted. Actually I was recovering from my near death experience so might not have seen it anyway. Shows what keeping an interested eye open can lead to. I choose the latter also which is similar to a comment I made a few minutes ago elsewhere about pixel peepers. Glad to know ya. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      • Reed Andariese posted an old shot of a kingfisher and apologized for it being a huge crop. I said that it only matters to pixel peepers (there is good and bad peeping) and it was a fine shot of behavior. I got started with internet image posting on NatureScapes.Net and the critiques there were sometimes brutal literally over pixels. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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