Why The Simplest Solution to Life’s Problems Might Be Right One

Applying a philosophical principle known as Ockham’s Razor to solve life’s problems

Published on Oct 31·3 min read

Making Sure Life Gets Better With Age

As middle-age beckons, how do we stay vital and interesting?

Published on Oct 31·5 min read

Can Science Teach Us Right and Wrong?

Science improves well-being, but can it also instruct us how to behave?

Published on Oct 30·9 min read

Beautiful Vistas: Landscapes by Lord Frederic Leighton

Remarkable oil paint vignettes by the Victorian painter

Published on Oct 29·5 min read

Claps Are Gone. Medium Partner Program Has Changed

New habits of stats-checking will surely follow

Published on Oct 29·4 min read

How Art Inspires

Five great paintings and why they changed my life

Published on Oct 26·7 min read

How to Read Art: St Jerome in a Rocky Landscape by Joachim Patenier

An early landscape painting that brilliantly weaves tradition and imagination

Published on Oct 25·4 min read

Should Museums Return Artifacts To Their Original Countries?

The repatriation of ancient objects is highly-charged and complex

Published on Oct 24·7 min read

How Digital Changes the Nature of Original Art

The strange relationship between museum objects and the digital copies we make of them

Published on Oct 22·5 min read

How To Know If You’re On The Right Path

The subtle art of walking through the right doors

Published on Oct 20·3 min read

Autumnal Tree: Painting The Colors of the Fall

Watercolor painting of a tree with its late summer plummage

Published on Oct 19·4 min read

A Writer’s Paradise: In Search Of Lawrence Durrell In Corfu

Looking for the writer’s home on the ancient Greek island

Published on Oct 18·7 min read

Social Media And The Distorting Of Time

How social media interlaces past and future in an endless knot

Published on Oct 17·4 min read

Great Paintings: Claude Lorrain’s Seaport with the Embarkation of the Queen of Sheba

An imaginary voyage as the dawn sun rises over a classical landscape

Published on Oct 16·4 min read

Kobo, Kindle, Nook? Why Such Odd Names?

eReaders and their names: a short survey

Published on Oct 14·4 min read

Why We Need Art More Than Ever

In these troubled times, art is one of the best ways of making sense of the world

Published on Oct 14·3 min read

Great Paintings: The Avenue, Middelharnis By Hobbema

An enigmatic painting made brilliant by light and composition

Published on Oct 11·5 min read

Painting A Japanese Maple In Watercolor

A practical guide to painting a tree with beautiful red foliage

Published on Oct 9·4 min read

Algorithms Are A Long Way From Making Great Art

Could artificial intelligence ever have passion, originality, sophistication?

Published on Oct 9·5 min read

Debunking the Myths of Success And Destiny

How life is always in a state of unfolding

Published on Oct 8·4 min read

Does Art Need Explaining?

If art has no fixed meaning, then the audience can sometimes lost

Published on Oct 7·5 min read

Great Artworks: Saint Francis in Meditation by Francisco de Zurburán

A gripping image that describes a model of meditative worship

Published on Oct 4·4 min read

How To Paint A Tree In Watercolors

Another step-by-step guide to painting trees

Published on Oct 3·3 min read·In The Startup

Art and Surveillance

Artistic stories of data capture and evasion, and the struggle between hiding and seeking

Published on Oct 1·7 min read

Looking For Van Gogh’s Home

In search of the Yellow House in Arles

Published on Sep 30·6 min read

A Case For Living Like a Writer

The writer-ideal is an illusion. It’s time to find your own validation.

Published on Sep 29·4 min read

There’s No Shame In Shaking Hands

Some people are huggers and some are not

Published on Sep 27·5 min read

The Lure of Wittgenstein

Why the philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein remains such as strong influence on me

Published on Sep 26·7 min read

The Honest Art of Luchita Hurtado

“This is a landscape, this is the world, this is all you have.”

Published on Sep 26·6 min read

How To Lead Your Own Life

Try solitude

Published on Sep 23·4 min read

How To Paint A Tree

Laden your brush with paint and commit it to paper

Published on Sep 20·5 min read

It Took Me 8 Years To Quit My Job

Waiting for the right moment is key to freelancing longevity

Published on Sep 19·8 min read·In The Startup

The Eloquent Art of Vilhelm Hammershøi

A Danish painter of poignant melancholy interiors

Published on Sep 18·4 min read

Why Looking At Paintings Cures Me Every Time

When the world confuses, paintings reassure

Published on Sep 17·5 min read

Beautiful Landscapes By Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot

Remarkable paintings from a single year by the French landscape painter

Published on Sep 16·4 min read·Unpublished changes

Lessons From A Special Teacher

Recollections that still inspire

Published on Sep 13·3 min read

Great Paintings: Combing the Hair by Edgar Degas

Unexpected, entertaining and truthful

Published on Sep 12·4 min read

Great Works of Art: The Seilern Triptych by Robert Campin

Three-part masterpiece that illustrates the narrative of the Passion of Christ

Published on Sep 11·4 min read

Great Paintings: Evening Over Potsdam by Lotte Laserstein

A melancholy masterpiece by a little-known female artist of Weimar Germany

Published on Sep 10·5 min read

The Symbolism of Walls

Walls are boundaries, but not all walls forbid. The walls of a cathedral, synagogue or mosque are meaningfully permeable. We are invited to…

Published on Sep 7·6 min read

People-Pleasing Isn’t Always Bad

The choice is not between winning and losing

Published on Sep 6·5 min read

Writer: How To Know If You’re Oversharing

Thoughts on staying in control of your online revelations

Published on Sep 5·4 min read

Great Artists: Paul Cézanne

A painter of subtle landscapes who influenced a generation

Published on Sep 3·7 min read

Art Gallery Selfies

Ban them or celebrate them?

Published on Sep 2·5 min read

A Timely Lesson From A Classic Movie

The destructive force of certainty and the power of ambivalence

Published on Aug 31·3 min read

What To Make of Jeff Koons?

Neo-pop pioneer or charletan of the art market?

Published on Aug 30·6 min read

Great Paintings: Caravaggio’s ‘The Supper at Emmaus’

A vividly realistic painting of psychological transformation

Published on Aug 29·5 min read

Writing Advice From A Slow-Burning Career

For those in it for the long-haul…

Published on Aug 28·5 min read

Great Paintings: ‘Winter Landscape’ by Caspar David Friedrich

An evocative landscape laden with symbolic mystery

Published on Aug 28·5 min read

Serendipity Can Help You Be More Creative

The art and power of the deliberate accident

Published on Aug 27·6 min read·In The Startup

Modern Art & Japanese Woodcut Prints

From Manet to Van Gogh, the influence of Japanese ukiyo-e prints on European art

Published on Aug 25·5 min read

The Letters of Vincent Van Gogh

The pleasure of reading an artist’s correspondence

Published on Aug 22·3 min read

Lee Krasner: Not Just Another Abstract-Expressionist

A daring abstract painter who was far more than “Mrs Pollock”

Published on Aug 21·7 min read

Great Paintings: The Death of Marat by Jacques-Louis David

A political work of art that draws on the values of classical antiquity

Published on Aug 20·6 min read

How Medium Changed My Writing Life

For good and for bad (though mainly good)

Published on Aug 19·7 min read

Great Paintings: A Bar at the Folies-Bergère by Édouard Manet

A compelling work of art that continues to yield new readings

Published on Aug 17·5 min read

Symbols In Art: Icarus, the boy who flew too close to the sun

Different artistic representations of the Greek legend

Published on Aug 15·7 min read

Tales From A Puzzling Life

Glimmers of hope and despair from youth to adult

Published on Aug 14·4 min read·In The Startup

Symbols In Art: Mirrors & Reflections

From ancient tales to modern art, mirrors capture complex truths

Published on Aug 13·6 min read

Controlling Your Life Is Not Easy

But thinking about life in 360 degrees can help

Published on Aug 12·4 min read

Symbols in Art: The Annunciation

Compare how different artists have treated this biblical subject

Published on Aug 9·6 min read

Does Happiness Have To Be Real?

What a thought experiment can tell us about expectations of happiness

Published on Aug 8·4 min read

How To Visit Art Galleries

Tips on how to get the most from your visit

Published on Aug 7·6 min read

Learning A Musical Instrument Will Make You Happier

Why learning to play is a most reliable source of pleasure

Published on Aug 6·5 min read

Why I Love Cities (But Won’t Live In One)

The pleasures and distractions of exploring cityscapes

Published on Aug 5·3 min read

The Enigma and Beauty of Negative Spaces

The power of a negative space is in its capacity to disrupt your normal expectations of reality

Published on Aug 5·7 min read

Art Appreciation & Books

Looking at art is first and foremost about making personal connections, no matter where you are

Published on Aug 4·4 min read

The Art of Winifred Nicholson

Artist who explored the quieter secrets of the cosmos

Published on Aug 2·4 min read

Paul Klee & Late-Life Productivity

The artist’s story of innovation and constant growth

Published on Aug 1·5 min read

I couldn’t agree more.

Published on Aug 1·1 min read

The Impressionists: Art and Liberty

The intricate relationship between personal and creative freedom

Published on Jul 30·7 min read

Great Works of Art: The Laocoön

The story goes like this: Helen was the wife of a Greek king. Her great beauty claimed the attention of a foreign prince, Paris, who came…

Published on Jul 29·5 min read

How To Read Paintings: Portrait of Sylvia Von Harden by Otto Dix

A startling portrait that delves into the mindset of an entire epoch

Published on Jul 25·4 min read

Find Yourself, But Don’t Lose Others In The Process

Your own private journey could be leaving others behind

Published on Jul 21·2 min read

On Not Being Sure

The value of not always knowing

Published on Jul 19·3 min read

Thanks Shannon.

So my advice would be:

Published on Jul 19·1 min read

Can You Be Creative and Poor?

As an artist, I have a strange relationship with money

Published on Jul 18·6 min read

Learn Composition: Contrast and Silhouette

A case study in how artist Félix Vallotton used shape and contrast to build up successful picture compositions

Published on Jul 17·7 min read·Unpublished changes

Let Art Restore Your Faith In Humanity

Art captures universal truths that remind us we are all in the same human predicament

Published on Jul 16·5 min read

Thank you Raphael. Very elegantly put.

Published on Jul 12·1 min read

Keep Me Out of the Exhibition

A poem for art/lovers

Published on Jul 12·1 min read

Great Works of Art: Duchamp’s ‘Fountain’

A disruptive work of modern art that continues to inspire

Published on Jul 11·5 min read

Van Gogh’s Early Years

The travels and influences of the young Vincent

Published on Jul 10·9 min read·In Storius Magazine

Paul Klee’s Tunisia Trip

The travels of an artist discovering himself

Published on Jul 4·7 min read

My Six-Week Sabbatical

Taking time to re-align my life was one of the best decisions I’ve made in years

Published on Jul 1·6 min read·In The Startup

Architectural Basics: The Roman Arch

The principles of the arch, vault and groin

Published on Jun 28·4 min read

The Pleasures Of Art

Recollecting the kicks and comforts of twenty years of looking at art

Published on Jun 25·5 min read

Could Writers Receive A Regular Salary?

One writer’s quest to change the way authors are paid

Published on Jun 24·5 min read·In The Startup

What Was Cubism?

The emergence of one of the most influential movements in modern art

Published on Jun 20·8 min read

Conflicts of the Creative Life

Contrary demands of work, time and creativity

Published on Jun 17·4 min read·In The Startup

Identity Art: Cindy Sherman, Sherrie Levine and Sophie Calle

Art that probes the conventions of authorship and self-identity

Published on Jun 13·5 min read·In Thinksheet

Hi Roberta,

Thanks for the response. I was especially happy to read it because it goes against the grain of current ‘acceptable’ thought about Michael…

Published on Jun 11·1 min read

Great Buildings: The Mosque of Córdoba

When a building moves us emotionally

Published on Jun 11·5 min read

How To Read Paintings: Monet’s Water Lilies

Amorphous and puzzling paintings that gain meaning in the looking

Published on Jun 9·5 min read

The Wedded Rocks of Japan

A Japanese work of art that distills a deeper philosophy

Published on Jun 4·4 min read

Words Of Encouragement

A message to anyone looking for direction

Published on May 30·4 min read

Every Picture Tells A Story… But Whose?

The FSA photographs of the Great Depression

Published on May 28·6 min read

How To Read Paintings: Thomas Cole’s Oxbow

Environmental warnings from a classic work of art

Published on May 26·5 min read

Hi Brian, that’s an interesting response.

For me, I have learnt most about art when the ‘expert’ encourages me to look more closely. For this reason, I like to write about art with…

Published on May 23·1 min read

How To Read Paintings: Caravaggio’s Bacchus

A Baroque masterpiece about decadence and decay

Published on May 21·4 min read

The Changing Status of Feminist Art History

How art history has grappled with the changing concerns of identity

Published on May 19·9 min read

Online reading environments need better design

Or how Medium has got it more or less right

Published on May 16·5 min read·In UX Collective

The Art of Christian Schad

A Realist Artist of the Weimar Republic

Published on May 15·9 min read

Stop Worrying About Other People’s Success

Why success is in how we define ourselves

Published on May 12·4 min read·In The Startup

Patience is the Unsung Hero of Creativity

The underrated power of taking your time

Published on May 10·5 min read

A Beginner’s Guide to Art History

How do art movements fit together, and is there more than one story?

Published on May 9·8 min read

Art That Takes Its Time

Let the bigger things in life take over for a moment or two

Published on May 7·5 min read

Creative Block? No Brooding! Work!

Sometimes perseverance is the only way to overcome self-doubt

Published on May 6·4 min read

The Art of Édouard Manet

A Parisian artist and forefather of the Impressionists

Published on May 2·7 min read

Co-Working Spaces and Their Benefits

How shared work spaces can bring out the best in people

Published on Apr 26·6 min read

What Artists Talk About When They Talk About Their Art

And why it’s hard to say anything truly meaningful

Published on Apr 24·6 min read

How To Read Paintings: Titian’s Assumption of the Virgin

An artwork of high drama and beauty

Published on Apr 18·5 min read

When Our Heroes Fall

On Michael Jackson and narratives of condemnation

Published on Apr 16·6 min read

Abstract Art Reconsidered

Pictures of things that don’t exist

Published on Apr 12·6 min read·In Dialogue & Discourse

Thanks Kesh.

When Raphael was in Florence, he would almost certainly have been aware of Michelangelo’s work, but he seems to have drawn far greater…

Published on Apr 9·1 min read

How Raphael Composed His Paintings

The impeccably beautiful techniques of a Renaissance master

Published on Apr 9·5 min read

Can Art Clean Up Dirty Money?

Protests at the Guggenheim are changing the landscape of arts patronage

Published on Apr 6·6 min read

Walking Can Save You

Peace, rhythm, solitude and reflection

Published on Apr 3·3 min read

How To Look At Contemporary Art

Open your mind to the wonderful world of 21st century art

Published on Mar 28·8 min read

Should Authors Receive A Regular Salary?

The story of a writer’s bold and revolutionary request

Published on Mar 26·5 min read·In The Writing Cooperative

Embarrassed Yet?

Naked truths about life drawing classes

Published on Mar 26·4 min read

Finding Your Authentic Self

Is your authentic self something you are born with or is it something that you create yourself?

Published on Mar 17·5 min read

The Netflix Effect

Why I sometimes miss the TV schedule

Published on Mar 12·5 min read

The Brilliant And Tragic Life Of Yves Klein

The extraordinary artist who combined the spiritual with the avant-garde in a tragically short life

Published on Mar 5·8 min read

The Power Of Existentialism

Mental well-being reconsidered

Published on Mar 1·6 min read

My Writing Career And Medium

Thoughts about writing as a career and using Medium to get there

Published on Feb 24·6 min read·In The Writing Cooperative

The Mystery Of Symbols In Art

Decoding the obscure language of iconography

Published on Feb 21·10 min read

Reflections On Leonard Cohen

A personal tribute to man of elegance and insight

Published on Feb 14·7 min read

Book Review: “Kudos” by Rachel Cusk

Book review of the third instalment in Rachel Cusk’s elegant and beguiling trilogy

Published on Jan 30·5 min read

Hi Thuận. You ask about Alan Watts?

Published on Jan 25·1 min read

Hi Tim, I’m really glad you liked the article — really nice to hear feedback like this.

Published on Jan 25·1 min read

Does It Matter If Artists Use Teams Of Makers To Make Their Art?

Why is it controversial for famous artists to employ others to make their work?

Published on Jan 24·5 min read

Thank you Francesca.

Published on Jan 22·1 min read

Shyness Didn’t Stop Me Joining A Band

…nor leaving it for something that suited me better.

Published on Jan 22·7 min read

Will Touchscreen Gestures Change The Way We Communicate?

How will the swipe, the slide, the tap and the pinch enter our wider forms of communication?

Published on Jan 21·5 min read

Ways Into Buddhism

The difficulties of a westerner’s journey into the Buddhist Faith

Published on Jan 14·6 min read

Who Can Represent You?

When others speak on behalf of your history and heritage

Published on Jan 7·9 min read

How To Read Paintings: Bellini’s San Zaccaria Altarpiece

The decoding of a Venetian masterpiece

Published on Jan 2·7 min read

Writers, Artists And Stereotypes

Why clichés about creativity are hard to dislodge

Published on Dec 24, 2018·5 min read

My 8-Year Wait To Leave My Job

…when I really wanted to be an artist.

Published on Dec 18, 2018·8 min read

Picasso, Primitivism, And The Rights And Wrongs Of Cultural Appropriation

When artists borrow, do they also offend?

Published on Dec 17, 2018·7 min read

Will I Ever Be Real?

My psychology is contorted by strange concepts of time and expectation. But there is hope.

Published on Dec 12, 2018·10 min read

Social Media and the Digital Gaze

The balances of power are constantly shifting as we watch ourselves being watched

Published on Nov 28, 2018·10 min read

Dazzle Areas: The Art Of David Milne

The Canadian artist David Milne was born in 1882. By all accounts he was a modest man with a leaning towards the austere. Raised in a log…

Published on Nov 24, 2018·4 min read

How Should We Travel?

When cultures clash and how to think about it

Published on Nov 17, 2018·8 min read

How to Look at Paintings

Slow down, have a seat, and stay away from the information plaques

Published on Nov 13, 2018·5 min read

Visiting Hydra: Leonard Cohen & Bohemian Idyll

A pilgrimage to the idyllic Greek island where the singer once lived and loved

Published on Nov 4, 2018·17 min read

The Reason Algorithms Will Never Make Great Art

This A.I. portrait just sold for $432,000 at Christie’s. Why is it so valuable?

Published on Oct 30, 2018·5 min read

On ‘The Waste Land’ by T.S. Eliot

The story of one of the most influential poems ever written in English

Published on Oct 29, 2018·4 min read

In Defense Of The People-Pleaser

People-pleasing is not always a sign of trying too hard

Published on Oct 25, 2018·6 min read

Nerds Become The Most Eligible Bachelors

Misjudged throughout their schooldays, nerds emerge like butterflies to take the best prizes

Published on Oct 22, 2018·4 min read

Performing Lights: The Art of Atsuko Tanaka

A pioneering Japanese artist, Atsuko Tanaka is little-known in the West, but she deserves more attention.

Published on Oct 16, 2018·3 min read

My Smartphone Won’t Conquer Me

My smartphone is better at running my life than I am, but I won’t let it take over.

Published on Oct 12, 2018·6 min read

Let Women Roam

Urban landscapes are prohibiting women’s freedom. How about a 9pm curfew on men?

Published on Oct 9, 2018·4 min read

Brexit, Passports and Modern Ideas of Identity

Before World War I, the status of the passport was fluid. After Brexit, it will be crucial to our ideas of national identity.

Published on Oct 4, 2018·4 min read

How I learnt to find my voice

How a teacher helped me find my voice by allowing me to be silent

Published on Oct 2, 2018·5 min read

Why go to the beach?

From Venice Beach to the Mediterranean coast, the beach is more crowded than ever. Why is it so popular?

Published on Oct 1, 2018·5 min read

How Credible is Self-Publishing?

A self-published French novel has been shortlisted for a major literary prize, which is making me think twice about self-publishing.

Published on Sep 18, 2018·5 min read

Lessons to learn at 40

How do we stay vital and interesting once we hit 40?

Published on Sep 10, 2018·5 min read

Art Eternally Made, Here and Now

In art, what you can represent depends on your perspective, and perspectives are liable to change.

Published on Aug 22, 2018·6 min read

To Serif or to Sans-Serif?

Should our words come adorned or just naked?

Published on Aug 16, 2018·2 min read

Thank you Mary.

Published on Aug 10, 2018·1 min read

A Weimar Woman & Artist: Lotte Laserstein

As an independent female artist in Germany during the 1920s.

Published on Aug 10, 2018·6 min read

Memory’s Work: The Art of Toba Khedoori

The appeal of Toba Khedoori’s work lies, perhaps, in the enigmatic precision with which her images are made. It lends them the virtue of…

Published on Aug 3, 2018·3 min read

Discover the Nostalgic Art of Mark Dion

Invocations of Victorian adventurers, amateur explorers, cabinets of curiosities and detective stories. For our modern age, there is…

Published on Jul 28, 2018·5 min read

Popular Trivia Is Often Wrong

Maybe the real facts are those we find along the way

Published on Jul 23, 2018·5 min read

Andreas Gursky: Photographer of Strangeness

Why Andreas Gursky’s photographs go beyond the ordinary in to the absurd. By Christopher P Jones

Published on Jul 18, 2018·4 min read

Review of “So Long, See You Tomorrow” by William Maxwell


Published on Jul 9, 2018·4 min read