The Abstraction Point is the specific moment when an object oriented piece of art crosses into total abstraction. The digital artist who is aware of the abstraction point can control the piece of art so that it is both object oriented and abstract at the same time.
Digital art walks a fine line of layers and techniques to build the final piece of art. If it crosses the abstraction point it can totally change the piece of art, making it unrecognizable from its original form. In some cases this is a good thing, if total abstraction is your purpose. But if your purpose is to maintain a ratio between the object and the abstract you can easily tip the whole piece of art and lose your original intention.
Developing your skills as a digital artist means that you are extremely conscious of when and wear the piece of art changes into something totally new.
Always remember that the success of any given piece of digital art isn't simply in finding a filter and using it over and over again. Instead its in subtly maneuvering each filter and merging them together in a constant development process until you achieve your goals for the piece of art.
This is no different than an artist using dozens of different brushes to achieve a final painting.
The abstraction point does not stay stationary. It changes based on your intentions for the piece of art. Being able to identify when the abstraction point is reach each time you create a piece of digital art is as much an instinct as it is a science. But if you can refine this skill it can be the difference between a mediocre piece of art and a masterpiece.
While there are many different layers to any given piece of art, the abstraction point can most easily be seen by looking at three key parts of any given digital art piece. The example below is called the "object point". Its where the objects can clearly be seen within the art and most of the primary elements are now present.
The second is example is the "Abstraction Point". Note that the original objects are now 80% or more obscured. If the piece is taken just a slight amount further you will lose the objects completely and be left with a total abstraction
And here is the finished work, showing how we manipulate the original objects back into art.
Keep in mind that there is a lot more at play here than a couple of filters. To achieve this final work, there are at least 50-100 steps in between. But if you can identify where the abstraction point is, it will make an incredible difference in your work