As I've mentioned before, I have a painting process, which is to make a tremendous* mess on the canvas then resolve it. The mess is usually made up of texture materials from the hardware store (patching compound, stucco patch), maybe some paper or sand, and paint thrown hither and yon. This picture was surprisingly difficult, not to paint, but to figure out an approach. When I resolve the tremendous mess, I often look at the painting at different rotations. With this one, I kept turning and turning and turning it. I did some work in resolving the darks and lights. I added more paint texture. I saw various shapes, but I kept returning to a small face I saw, so I finally painted it. Suddenly, the face brought the whole work into focus.
* I like the word "tremendous" here. I used to say I'd make a "terrible mess," but, you know, it's really not terrible. So I looked for a colorful word that would express my effect on the canvas. And I thought of "tremendous." I like it. Today, at least. Could use some other word tomorrow, I suppose.