I have a new studio! Please visit me in my new studio at DRV Gallery, 5401 Gulfport Blvd. S, Gulfport, FL. Call or text me to be sure I'm there. 804.837.3296
Think sugar coated bundles of detail and slight oddness combined to make unpainted paintings that are arresting and uncanny.
I'm Dawn Waters and I paint with fiber. In 2014, a friend taught me the basics of wet felting and I began making wearables. Soon after, I was introduced to the felting needle. I wondered if I could make a fiber portrait with one of these barbed needles. I had never seen a fiber painting, and had not created a portrait in any medium. Needle felting is relatively new, unlike wet felting - it’s like tattooing, but with wool. I kept at it, and finally the likenesses were recognizable and the intended emotions emerged.
I often include an unexpected element like James Brown’s face as Edvard Munch’s The Scream; my political slant, as in Ruth Bader Ginsburg as Wonder Woman; or a poignant subject, such as the iconic National Geographic Afghan Girl. I used to communicate as a writer, but now I do this through these paintings, making statements or eliciting emotions, whether it’s evoking comments about a political statement, a discussion or mere reflection from an emotive piece, or simply a good laugh. When I started creating these paintings, I made famous faces, but am progressing into a more emotionally-focused direction and creating pieces that combine methods and materials. Much of my work incorporates 3-D wet felted objects such as flowers, a nod to where I began.
I relish the challenge of bringing a subject to life through fiber and creating work that begs to be touched. I have recently begun painting with paint and mixed media and it’s clear that each medium is informing the other, and I see the possibilities are endless.
Please contact me for commission and exhibition inquiries. My CV can be found here. email@example.com 804.837.3296
The Original Golden Girl (Dolly Parton, circa 1977) 16x20.
Simply the best. Tina Turner. 16"x20"
'Cause tramps like us, baby we were born to run. Bruce Springsteen 36x36
Ziggy Stardust/David Bowie, a commission. SOLD.
This One Goes Out to the One I Love. Michael Stipe of REM with my favorite lyrics surrounding him. Felted on painted canvas. 24x30
Anthony Bourdain, 1956-2018, 18x24, part of We Thought We Knew Them series
Michael K. Williams, 1966-2021, 18x24, part of We Thought We Knew Them series
Kate Spade, 1962-2018, 18x24, part of We Thought We Knew Them series
Robin Williams, 1951-2014, 18x24, part of We Thought We Knew Them series
Philip Seymour Hoffman, 1967-2014, 18x24, part of We Thought We Knew Them series
Jerry Garcia of The Grateful Dead, a commission. SOLD.
Petty in Pink. Needle felted Tom Petty portrait and lots of pink fabric. 24"x28". SOLD.
A grayscale commissioned Frida Kahlo. SOLD.
Artist With Distracting Mustache. Dali is all needle felted, mounted on fabric. SOLD.
Wool is wrapped around wire to produce a bendable mustache.
All fiber, no paint. David Bowie, with his incredible eyes. Original photo by Brian Aris. SOLD.
That's me holding the beautiful David Bowie so you can see the scale of this one.
Well, I Just Love Everybody. Dolly Parton, with wet-felted floral crown. SOLD.
She's huge. My felted Frida Kahlo features felted flowers and a shawl, and real earrings! First place winner. SOLD.
A very large needle-felted portrait of the inspirational artist, Frida Kahlo.
Hello, bebeh. The incomparable Moira Rose. 11"x14.5. SOLD
Madam Freaking Vice President. Kamala Harris. SOLD.
Neil Young has been a favorite of mine since childhood. Here's how he looked then & how he looks now. All fiber.
He peacefully knelt to bring awareness to police brutality. He risked everything. Colin Kaepernick. 3rd place, Florida CraftArt, Members' Show, 2022. SOLD.
Willie Nelson, felted with wool and there's hemp in those braids. 18"w x 24"h SOLD.
Flora Kahlo, needle and wet felted on silk fabric. 24"x30"
Two Songbirds - John Prine & Muse. 22"w x 23"h. Auctioned to benefit COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund.
My fiber reproduction of the iconic National Geographic cover...The Afghan Girl. Original photo: Steve McCurry, 1984. Cover, 1985. 15" x 15". SOLD.
Stephen Colbert Loves Me. Needle-felted with wet-felted rose, that he's obviously giving to me. 21" x 21".
From beginning to end.
Friend Goals. Tina Fey & Amy Poehler on fabric background with tee-shirts. 40"w x 32"h
Keith Richards with his favorite flowers. 21" x 21". SOLD.
American Gossip - A Rumor is Born. Gaga & Cooper in Grant Wood's American Gothic. 18"w x 21"h
Ingrid Bergman from Casablanca. My first black & white portrait. 15" x 15"
Wonder Justice! Notorious RBG as Wonder Woman. 15" x 16". SOLD.
My fiber interpretation of Steve McCurry's powerful photograph. 20"w x 30"h. SOLD.
Felted on left, photo on right.
The James Brown Scream 17"w x 22"h N/A
My first reproduction. David Hockney's version sold for $90 million. 23"w x 17"h. SOLD.
Cash 'n kitty. The man in black and his friend. 21" x 21".
My first truly mixed media piece. Beyonce with bling. 20"w x 30"h.
Split screen. Beyonce photo on left.
The beautiful Elizabeth Taylor dons a broken heart. 25"w x 31"h.
Word is that Barron gave her the shirt for her birthday. Portrait in fiber on fabric. 15" x 15". SOLD.
Obama wears Notorious RBG. 23.5"w x 31.5" h. SOLD.
I love Lucy. And I love working on curly haired people. SOLD
Can you see this face without saying, "more cowbell!?" 17.5"w x 21"h. SOLD.
Powerhouse voice Cat Power.
Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. I'm felted. SOLD.
The Princess Bride characters. Inconceivable!
Wonder Michelle! SOLD.
Benicio del Toro is one ominous looking dude
The beautiful and hilarious Maya Rudolph. Felted. 21"w x 17.5 h.
Felted on the left, photo on the right.
Paul Newman felted portrait. Foxy much?
Prince. Felted on the left. Photo on the right. SOLD.
Frances McDormand as Marge from Fargo. Felted.
Bill Murray made of fiber. SOLD
Carrie Brownstein, woman of many talents. Now she has her face in wool!
HGTV's The Property Brothers in wool.