I'm not sure the basic approaches to graphics are all that different, although perhaps JavaFX has its primitives at a different level.
At the lowest level, Flash has the display list, which looks pretty similar to the scenegraph (even to the point of using a stage object).
You can create nodes (DisplayObjects) in the list and draw graphics (or load bitmaps, etc). This is procedural drawing at the basic level, but you can do it modularly and create your own primitives. Also the GraphicsPath feature can be handy (http://help.adobe.com/en_US/as3/dev/WS749610B4-4709-4f75-BBA0-650BF52623CA.htm)l
At a higher level, Flex recently added support for declarative graphics: http://oreilly.com/flex/excerpts/flex-4-cookbook/graphics.html
Thanks for the information and the URLs. I can start to get a sense of what you are saying but I am not quite there yet (part of my learning curve in the FLEX/AIR world).
It is interesting that when I read JavaFX stuff I get a pretty clear picture of one unified model. I may not know it all, but all the material seems to portray the underlying model in the same light. I can take those foundations and build on them logically. I get the same sense in the Silverlight world of Microsoft. But when I start to try and do this in the Adobe world I seem to run into different underlying models or at least different views of those models (and that is certainly not to say there isn't one unified mode, I am sure there is, but at times it just does not become apparent). At times I am not sure if I need to switch paradigms and tooling to get things done or not. Should I take a more traditional ActionScript/Flash approach for graphics and then hop into the Flex/AIR world for the rest of the UI? Do they tie together well? I have been looking for a definitive book but they all seem to approach UI/graphics development differently.
I think I may want to start with your last URL (re: Flex declaritive graphics) but then again maybe I should be starting with the "Basics of ActionScript display programming".