The man responsible for the largest chainsaw-carved bear on the east coast of the United States, Paul Waclo, now has another accolade under his belt. His exceptional skills earned him a commission from the White House.
Waclo, honored by the invitation to create a sculpture for President Trump's birthday, responded with a 9-foot-tall bald eagle in flight, and it's quite the sight.
The Pennsylvania-based artist has been carving professionally since 2014. He was inspired by a show called "Saw Dogs" on the Discovery Channel, he told The Epoch Times, and ventured right out to buy himself a chainsaw.
"Using a chainsaw was quite an adventure for the first few attempts," Waclo admitted, "but I found within the first two weeks people were asking to buy my sculptures."
Waclo carves into freshly fallen tree trunks, allowing him the height and diameter he needs to create sculptures on a truly impressive scale. "My ability to see images in three dimensions within the log is the real key to my success," he explained.
"Chainsaw carving" is by no means a misleading description of Waclo's method. The artist explained that 90 percent of his sculptures are rendered using chainsaws—"large, powerful saws with 42-inch bars down to smaller saws," he said—after which the narrow tips of 12- and 8-inch saws, electric sanders, and Dremel tools hone-in on the fine details.
Waclo, a keen bird watcher, has been observing eagles near his home for years. The graceful bird of America became the inspiration for a new series of wood carvings, and the carvings caught the attention of the president.
"Being asked by the White House to create an American bald eagle for President Trump was certainly a tremendous honor," Waclo reflected. "The entire process on this 9 foot eagle took about 40 hours, from a log at a saw mill to a finished piece of art, worthy of a Presidential collection."
In addition to the White House commission, the artist's proudest to date, Waclo has had work displayed in Italy, Germany, British Columbia, and all over the United States.