Here's a general overview of the progression of one of my recent paintings.
It originally began as a quick oil sketch of my house from memory, as I sat inside ignoring the several feet of snow outside. I was more interested in making an interesting painting than accurately reproducing my street, so instead my house became this framework off of which I could build something original. Working almost entirely from memory and invention, I adapted a few different perspective techniques, gave myself some rules and found excuses to break them; anything to keep that initial spark of interest going. I wanted to keep all possibilities available and didn't tie myself to the truth. Without much direct reference, I felt more free to alter things and invent my own additions to the neighborhood. After a few stages of changes, here's the result.