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A Celebration of Color!

August 12, 2017


Tamara’s husband is from Belise and she requested a wheel using elements of the area. I, as usual, began to research all the ideas she offered and was totally blown away with the color and energy of the country!  The main thing she requested was a figurehead carved to be a toucan.  What a great bird!  I built the bill up using a piece of plate aluminum as a core with layers of wood overlaid.  Then my handy dandy epoxy to finish the look.  I had to do some scrambling to locate colors this intense.  This little fellow is quite likeable  and suspect others will think so too.  The other critter living on the wheel  has a more limited appeal but he has grown on me a lot too.  Ever heard of a gibnut?  Well, down on the front leg below the bird is where you can see a gibnut.  It is a large rodent and is considered a delicacy by the hungry people of Belise.  In fact there is a story about feeding the Queen one when she came to visit.  Lucky woman, I guess. Belise has the second largest barrier reef in the world and I painted some of the residents on this wheel.   The color below the surface of the sea  certainly rivals that of the toucan!


The second big wheel has the other thing Belise is known for – the jungle.  And Tamara likes monkeys.  So here we have a couple of spider monkeys.  Originally I had planned on only the one at the top but the other monkey just happened to photo bomb the wheel.  I am glad it showed up.  There are still many elements to add. The treadles are finished and so are the footman rods but they will keep for another post.  I think this is enough to show for today.  Thanks for looking!




  1. Ellen Bader permalink

    Gary, this is beautiful as always. You really captured Belise. Once can imagine being there easily.

  2. Whitney Lard permalink

    Gary – Every time I read about a wheel, I know mine will be amazing. You are an artist. I’m going to enjoy watching you build every wheel. Thanks for sharing the adventures.

  3. Really you are an artist Gary. I am so sad for not getting a wheel from you.

  4. rabbitsheepllama permalink

    This is fun!    

  5. The toucan is a marvelous figurehead!

  6. AmyMatildaNW permalink

    This wheel is so fabulous! It cracks me up that you put that big rodent front & center. The monkeys are great.

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