Poem a Day

As a start to the day, I love to receive these poems, courtesy of the Poetry Foundation, and this one, along with so many others I have received, is beautiful:


This led me to prompt the ever-so-popular AI bot (see below dotted line at the end of this post) which always gives me a satisfying, easy read, telling me everything that it already knows about the topic. In my artistic endeavours, I am thinking through my senses, feeling towards that which is not yet known or hidden, invisible, trying to render that feeling in a painting as something palpably real – something that obviously involves factors that AI development (and its potential evolution) might aspire to but be unable to achieve. This brings me back to the consideration of the physicality of the original artwork, as being its essential logic, inherent to it, there at the very beginning. The painting shown here, Out of the Huge First Nothing (title based on a line by Whitman) has that in mind – that material came/comes first, and always – and to tie things up in completing this short paragraph, I note that there is a strong sense of the primal importance of material nature, as a governing factor of all matters, coming through in the poem, Christos (see link given at the beginning of this paragraph)

Out of the First Huge Nothing (oil on aluminium)

Logic is a very interesting field, as it involves reasoning that rests on what came first, and hence a sense of origin dwells in logic, making it a beautiful realm of exploration – leading me to remember an article recently in Aeon (I regularly receive their email newsletters)



write an essay comparing and contrasting painting and poetry.ChatGPT


Title: The Interplay of Expression: A Comparative Analysis of Painting and Poetry


Painting and poetry, two distinct forms of artistic expression, share the common goal of conveying emotions, thoughts, and ideas. Despite their differences in medium, both painting and poetry serve as powerful vehicles for communication and self-expression. This essay will explore the unique characteristics of each art form while also examining the ways in which they converge in their ability to evoke profound emotional responses.


  1. Medium and Form:
    • Painting:
      • Medium: Paintings utilize visual elements such as color, texture, and composition to convey meaning. Artists employ a variety of techniques, including brushstrokes and the choice of materials, to create a visual language.
      • Form: The canvas becomes a space for the artist to manifest their ideas, feelings, or interpretations of the world. The form is often static, captured in a single moment frozen in time.
    • Poetry:
      • Medium: Poetry, on the other hand, relies on the written word as its medium. The poet employs linguistic devices, such as rhyme, meter, and metaphor, to craft a verbal tapestry that resonates with the reader.
      • Form: Poetry can take various forms, including sonnets, free verse, or haikus. The arrangement of words and the rhythm contribute to the overall aesthetic and emotional impact of the poem.
  2. Imagery and Symbolism:
    • Painting:
      • Imagery: Paintings often convey meaning through visual imagery. Artists use symbols, colors, and shapes to evoke specific emotions or to convey complex ideas without relying on words.
      • Symbolism: Symbolism in painting can be both explicit and subtle, inviting viewers to interpret the work in their own way. The artist may use familiar symbols or create new ones to enrich the layers of meaning within the artwork.
    • Poetry:
      • Imagery: Poets paint with words, creating vivid mental images that appeal to the reader’s senses. Descriptive language and metaphorical expressions enhance the emotional impact of the poem.
      • Symbolism: Like painting, poetry often employs symbolism to convey abstract concepts. Metaphors and allegories provide a depth of meaning that extends beyond the literal interpretation of the words.
  3. Temporal Dimension:
    • Painting:
      • Temporal Limitations: A painting captures a single moment frozen in time. The viewer experiences the artwork as a whole, without a sequential order, allowing for immediate emotional impact.
      • Timelessness: Despite its temporal limitations, a well-executed painting possesses a timeless quality that transcends the specific moment it depicts.
    • Poetry:
      • Temporal Flow: Poetry unfolds over time as the reader progresses through lines and stanzas. The temporal aspect allows for a gradual immersion into the emotions and ideas expressed by the poet.
      • Dynamic Impact: The dynamic nature of poetry allows for the manipulation of time, enabling poets to create suspense, build tension, or evoke nostalgia through the careful arrangement of words.


In conclusion, while painting and poetry differ in their mediums and forms, they converge in their ability to convey profound emotional and intellectual experiences. Both art forms utilize imagery, symbolism, and a nuanced understanding of time to communicate with their respective audiences. Whether through the strokes of a brush or the arrangement of words on a page, painting and poetry stand as testament to the boundless possibilities of human expression. The interplay between these two forms enriches the cultural tapestry, inviting individuals to explore the depth of their emotions and the vastness of their imagination.

Concluding some paintings




When a painting is reaching its conclusion I think very carefully of how to title it. Untitled does not work for me. In making the paintings I have become absorbed into their wordless worlds, making naming not an easy matter but titling is a way to clarify the work further in my mind. They may subsequently gain additional or alternative titles. The above paintings are reaching their conclusion (each approx 125 x 125 cm) in oil on aluminium:

The higher res digital files, where much finer detail can be seen, are being edited (a long and laborious process) in preparation for the compilation of the animated timelines to be shown in the Summer show.

Refs/notes to self:

More than having options freedom is being true to yourself?



And then I remembered

“And then it struck me” (previous post). I knew that phrase but couldn’t remember exactly from where, and then I remembered that is was from the famous Negative Capability letter of John Keats”. The notion of Negative Capability is something which I have applied to my painting, in pictopoiesis, and I wrote about this in a section of my research paper. Here is the famous Keats’ letter itself. I notice that what Keats actually wrote was, “and at once it struck me” which I like better than my phrase.

On another strand, I am rather interested in Wittgenstein not because he is difficult and challenging to follow but because there is something about him which is hilarious, as he never gives up. I like the restlessness and ceaselessness of the dance he seems to be doing with the world.

This article demonstrates how anything can be taken and argued for endlessly. This reminds me of the endless arguments that art generates. Rather disturbingly artists have chosen to base their word on/in the arguments of others. I don’t think that is appropriate, for a painter at least, I can speak from that perspective, as I am a painter. The thing is, I see painting as an invention and the more it is invented from the bottom up, the more substantial I feel that invention to be. Mine is a way of saying something which can’t be argued, not because I want to be dogmatic but simply because I have no argument with the world in the big picture. What would be the point of that? I wonder at it rather than argue with it. I am not, of course, talking about the day to day struggles which happen to us all.  I have many arguments with what goes on in the human realm. The supporting structure of pictopoiesis is the painting’s own internal argument, given objectively as possible, or rather its relationship with the world.

I have felt compelled to do this as a painter in these times, I felt compelled, in making sense of it all, to go back to fundamental units and build my process architecturally.  That’s what pictopoiesis is. Having had that process affirmed by my paintings (they are generally considered to be well-done at least) I am now looking into it forensically, to try and see the ways in which that well-doneness has come about. Also for what that might be worth beyond the paintings themselves. I am restless and ceaseless, like Wittgenstein.

And at once it struck me (as it has before) and I can amuse myself listing all the illustrious names that begin with W (for Waring):  Walt Whitman, Wordsworth, Wittgenstein…and then if I turn it upside down we have an M for Michelangelo, if fact I could get everyone I want onto this list, and also write a short story using only words beginning with the letter W it is also endless what can be done with letters and words.

header image: Six Persimmons: