Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Wool Painting, Needle Felting Feature on Major Chicago News Station

An already busy holiday season became a bit more hectic, and a lot more exciting, when I was contacted by WGN news producer Pam Grimes, who was interested in doing a feature on my work. "Wool Painting: How a Love of Animals Led a Chicago Area Artist to a New Calling," was featured on the evening news, Dec. 21. I was pleasantly surprised that the feature was about 5 minutes.

Needle Felt artist
"Wool Painting: How a Love of Animals Led a Chicago Area Artist to a New Calling

Pam and photojournalist Steve Scheuer came to my home to talk to me about my work, photograph my winter woodland mantle display, some of my wool paintings and illustrations, and my needle felt animals. Prince Preemie also made the cut. He is from the most recent book I illustrated for the late disability advocate, Jewel Kats,  "Prince Preemie: A Tale of a Tiny Puppy Who Arrived Early." 

Dog fairy tale
"Prince Preemie: A Tale of a Tiny Puppy Who Arrived Early." 

Actually, it was interesting to see just how much of my story was portrayed in 5 minutes -- my summers working in national parks, my love of animals, my former career as a journalist.

My son's alma mater, Da Vinci Waldorf School was also featured in the segment. Very fitting, as my Waldorf connection was integral to my finding needle felting.  We drove over to the school where Pam talked to Kindergarten teacher Ieva Scoggin.  Ieva commissioned my Waldorf Seasons wool painting, which has become popular in my Etsy store and among Waldorf families. So many people have connected to the image, that it inspired my first picture book as author and illustrator, "Seasons of Joy: Everyday is for Outdoor Play," to be published in Spring 2017.

Waldorf school artist
The original Waldorf Seasons hangs at DaVinci Waldorf School. 

I was touched that the news segment captured my motivation for doing this work -- the joy that it brings me and the joy it brings to others.

Root children artist
My wool painting inspired by Sibylle von Olfers "The Story of the Root Children."

wool fiber artist
Claudia Marie Lenart of Claudia Marie Felt explaining and demonstrating needle felting on WGN.

A scene from my holiday woodland mantle display

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