I also made this present for my friend's daughter out of bits of an old failed experiment:
I love to repurpose things. Some of my best work comes from a sort of back-and-forth between destructive and creative processes. Occasionally, when I'm working on a big piece, I get most of the way through and realize that (most likely due to a number of deliciously irresponsible risks on my part) the composition is irresolvable, or the paint has gotten muddy in places and killed the luminous quality that might have been. There's this moment when I think to myself, "If I could just start over, and change x, y or z, this painting would be spectacular!" So that's what I do. Which leaves the first version free for cutting, sewing, and all kinds of other interesting experiments. These experiments aren't completely footloose and fancy-free; they're carefully directed by my active search for a new narrative. My blog header, a painting entitled Birdwoman is my favorite example of this because it catapulted me into so many new ways of making images.