Initially I was stumped by what the setting and dynamic of the winter creature would be. I considered a hibernating character. Perhaps the scene would be in a burrow, or maybe the box could be a freezer. I wasn't happy with the idea of painting a sleeping character though. On the upside, I rather liked the idea that came out of this line of thought, that we'd be viewing the scene through a frosted pane of glass with the center wiped clear.
Eventually I started playing with the idea of a snowman. Simple, obvious, though not 'biological', it served as a fun point of departure and pretty quickly evolved into the character I'm painting for this series. My snowman became white and fluffy, so now I'm working the balance between cute and weird.