I often avoid using the terms 'figuration' and 'abstraction' because I've always tried to have it both ways. I want the experience of looking at one of my paintings to be similar to the process of making the painting - you go from the big picture to something very intense and detailed, and then back again.
Often, I find it really hard to see what I'm doing when I'm in the thick of things. I can get too precious and have to force myself to put my paintings aside. There's a wall in my studio where I hang paintings that I think are done or nearly done. Over time, I'll realise which ones are working and which aren't.