Well, I think I need to step back. Baby Jesus is just about finished. Final photos will be posted shortly. My talented cousin, Anne Fosnaugh, collaborated with me to draw up this prospectus. Can you believe she could understand what I was trying to get across?!
Baby Jesus is needle felted from Romney and Corriedale wool roving that I hand-dyed with black walnuts. He is not built over a wire armature. He is pure wool inside and out. His hair is natural and dyed black Romney and Merino wool. Even His eyes are made of wool! These pieces will be life size.
Here I Am, Lord
Here I Am, Lord
When the thought of needle felting a religious piece made its unwelcome appearance in my head three years ago, I pushed it as far to the outer limits of my mind as possible. I have respect for all religious beliefs, as well as my own. I did not want to offend anyone, and I did not want the controversy I knew it could cause. Three years passed as I tried to expel the vision from my mind’s eye. Three years of “JUST START WITH THE BABY!” It would fill my entire mind and body, no matter what piece I was working on at the time. It was like an overwhelming scream throughout my body. Every excuse I came up with, and there were many, was met with “JUST START WITH THE BABY!” To make matters more complicated, the vision I had of the Holy Family was life size. My constant answer was, “You’ve got to be kidding."
I did try to mold the piece that was calling me into something I thought would be more manageable. I started a shepherd at about a quarter scale. One evening, while working on the shepherd, the voice/feeling of "JUST START WITH THE BABY" screamed so loudly throughout my mind and body I was physically shaken. After a few minutes, I put down what I was doing and went to get the proper felting needles and wool I needed to start baby Jesus. As I quietly meditated and became calm, I finally answered the call. I said, “Ok, Here I am, Lord.”