Exploring the Creative Process


Women need loneliness to create, without interference.
Heard this in an NPR interview with singer Buika, whom I've never heard before. Lovely, lovely voice. Smooth and rough at the same time. 
Just last year, Buika worked with the legendary, gun-toting, 91-year-old singer Chavela Vargas. Vargas, she says, unlocked the prison door of loneliness for her — by explaining that women need loneliness to create, without interference. 

"So, to me, [it] was like a boom. Like a big boom in my head," Buika says. "Because I was so scared of loneliness. So scared of loneliness. Because when you are alone, you hear yourself. And I didn't want to hear myself."
I think this is very true for me as an artist. I often thought I wasn't interacting enough with people during the creative process, but it's also emotionally taxing working alone, no warm bodies in a neighboring studio, just me and my thoughts pouring out on canvas. But this aloneness is what forces me to take it all down to the bone, reformulate it, and then pull it outside of myself for all the world to see. Or at least for some of the Metro DC area to see.


  1. I would have to agree in a sense. I work very well on small projects with my best friend, because I can bounce my "real self" off of her with ease, and sometimes ideas come out faster without the deep searching. But generally, the alone-ness/loneliness helps me really sort things out & answer things truthfully in my art.

  2. It's great that you have someone you can collaborate with like that. My husband wants to work on a project together in the future so hopefully I'll feel comfortable during the process. It'll be an interesting change of pace for sure!