This is a male Pacific Seahorse. It is the only seahorse found in California waters and is the largest, growing up to about 12 inches. (My seahorse at 13" is just slightly larger than life size.)
The seahorse is made from needle felted wool and took about 35 hours to complete. Each of the brown dots was painstakingly felted on individually.
Here are some links to more information about seahorses:
Monterey Bay Aquarium
Ocean Oasis Field Guide