Whenever possible, work alone to boost your creativity.
What artists have long suspected has born out to be true, according to Susan Cain in her new book, Quiet. Years of experiments have shown collaboration tends to create fewer and lower quality ideas, compared to people creating on their own. Brainstorming, to remain effective, should be a solitary activity.
But my experience tells me that the work itself is also better when I’m alone. This could be dangerous if your chosen field is wildlife photography, but the creative center of your brain doesn’t care as much about your subject matter as the way it’s approached.
As much as other humans may give us comfort, telling us we are on the right track with an idea (see the popularity of Instagram and Flickr), art is about pushing ideas past where others are comfortable.
Together, we remain comfortable. Alone, we remain unique.