I usually start each painting with a rough plan, something like a road map. The exciting part of painting is not the technical execution of that plan but rather the journey that occurs as the painting evolves on its own. It is similar to jumping in the car with a map, losing the map at a road stop, but still ending up at a great destination, albeit not the original chosen destination.
I love the process of painting, the colors, the blending, the layering, the slippery nature of the oils. I paint in layers. I usually start with a thumbnail sketch. I paint the first layer which is loose and spontaneous, the focus being on color rather than form. I then proceed to the actual image that I am trying to represent. This becomes a push and pull exercise, trying to let go enough to trust the brush, to allow the beautiful accidents to occur without thought getting in the way.
My goal is to have a subject that is recognizable in form, but still very abstract and fluid. I add layers of paint, scratch the surface, subtract entire areas and usually finger paint at some point until the image feels complete.