The Essence of the Essence

comments 12
Abstract / Impressionism / Inspiration / Photo Log / Photography / Seascapes


July 10, 2020. San Gregorio Bluffs, San Mateo County, California. January 28, 2021, My Office

Here’s what I said in my August 3, 2020 post of the mother of today’s picture:

This is an impossibly small crop of a much larger frame — a starting point for an imaginary stroll on walkable water.

I was going to post this last night, but it wasn’t ready. This is a picture where every nuance counts. An adjustment of just one click plus or minus in vibrancy or color balance or layer blending made a visible difference. Everything balances on the head of a pin. Had to sleep on it. Glad I did. A few changes in the morning finally resulted in a smile for both me and the Muse.

Every word of the above is just as true in today’s image. This is the same shot, same crop, same everything except the final post processing in photoshop.

The evolution is due to a thought came to me the other day — almost a commandment:

Find the essence of your image or statement. Then find the essence of that.

When I had that thought, my mind immediately went to this image. I followed the first part of the commandment on August 3 when I made the small crop. Now here’s the rest of it. The path disappears, but the destination is writ large.

This does not diminish the original, which stands on its own. But for me, this finishes this picture’s journey. The destination is writ large.

(Canon G5X II. RAW processing and initial editing in DxO PhotoLab 3.3; Final editing in Adobe Photoshop.)

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 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. One piece of advice when composing, or processing an image as it turns out, is to eliminate anything unnecessary. This is the ultimate example of that in practice. The difference between this and the original could literally be said to be night and day.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you very much. Yes that’s exactly what it is. Also there’s a saying be willing to kill your darlings. The reflective path on the original shot was a major feature. But in the low-key, it didn’t work. So it had to go.

      Liked by 2 people

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