Lorena: Man carves Baylor bear sculpture out of old tree stump

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LORENA, Texas (KWTX) A man is travelling the country bringing old tree stumps back to life. Tim Gill, a stump carver, uses a chainsaw to create animal sculptures out of tree stumps.

Stump carver Tim Gill said, "I've always been interested in art, this is a fast form of art."

Gill said previously he worked as a truck driver, but now he travels the country carving masterpieces. "I outline it with a saw and basically take away whatever isn't a bear," Gill said.

He said projects can take over 12 hours to complete, and it takes patience and passion "There's only a few types of wood I really don't like to carve," he said.

Lorena homeowner Paul Lakemper had a dead tree in his front yard after a storm, and he knew he wanted Gill to take care of the stump.

"We were cuttin' it down and the family was helping. They said, ‘How far do we want to cut it?’ I said, “Stop at about bear height because I'm gonna have my friend come cut it into a Baylor bear,’" Lakemper said.

There are several Baylor graduates in Lakemper’s family, so he wanted to represent the university with some bear pride. “It's gorgeous. I got a feeling I'm gonna have a lot of people wanting to take pictures of him," he said.

Lakemper said he admired the detail that Gill is able to achieve with a chainsaw. "He had just put the eyes and the nostrils and the teeth on, that really made it look alive. It looks like it could actually bite you," he said.

Gill painted the bear with a walnut finish, and Baylor green and gold.