Needle-Felted Wool Sculpture

Mark Fain Needle-Felted Wool Sculpture

Written and Posted by Sarah on January 28, 2013
This doll is based on Mark Fain, a well-known Bass player for Bluegrass and Country music (played with Ricky Scaggs for years). He just happens to be the Bass player on Buddy's latest CDs --- which is what gave me the idea for the doll.

It all started when Elizabeth and I went down to Gat3 Studio with Buddy and Kay in June. Buddy was recording his CD, Noah Believed, and we spent two days at the studio while the recording was going on. The first day is when all the background musicians came in to record the tracks. Mark was the first one to arrive, and Elizabeth and I were convinced -- almost from the first glance -- that he would make a fabulous needle-felted doll. Throughout the rest of the day, we watched him and took mental notes of details that would transfer well to the doll (e.g., his orange wrist watch and endless supply of chewing gum). Once home and ready to begin work on the doll, I printed out some of the pictures which Kay had taken during the session.

He really turned out like I wanted him to look. It was also really enjoyable to felt the pink shirt. I just love brown and pink wool! Photos in column at right show the doll and the real Mark. The doll sits 8-1/2 inches tall and weighs 2-3/4 ounces without his guitar. He was felted with .40 and .42 gauge needles and took approx. 59 hours (over a period of four months) to complete.

The guitar is a miniature replica of the actual guitar that Mark played while recording Buddy's CD. Dad made it from Bass wood, and Elizabeth painted it (using a pearl coating to give it the shiny look). Dad used glass beads, straight pins, fly-fishing sinkers and delicate wire to make the knobs, buttons and strings. Aren't Elizabeth and Dad a great team?! The finished guitar weighs one ounce.