At first I thought: it sure is quiet in here. And then I realized: Wow its noisy and its crowded. There are eyes in the walls. I’m being watched.
My own energy was bouncing around the room with no one else to interact with it and send it back to me. No audience. No collaborators. No designers. Just me. I could feel and hear my thoughts in a new way when I was the only person in the room to focus on.
During the first few sessions I also realized that the critic sneaks in more easily when I’m alone. She sits in the corner with arms folded, paces in the distance, whispers in my ear. This can be distracting and oppressive but it can also fuel a passionate drive to press onward and to move beyond the nagging doubt. Some days she doesn’t show up at all and there is a breezy ease to letting ideas tumble, letting thoughts and movements ripple out.
The most striking thing about working alone is that there is no verbal conversation at the end of an experiment or an improvisation. Instead I sit down with my pen or lay on my back to process and to remember what just happened.