From Imaging Tables to Coffee Tables
May 28, 2019 05:16PM
By Robert Fraass
When growing up in California, Guy Gibson’s hard-working, World War II veteran father didn’t provide an option when it came to home projects—they would never be hired out, and Guy would be helping.
That work ethic and his father’s love of working with wood stayed with Guy over the years, including when he built wooden toys for the couple’s three daughters when they were young. But the DIY-furniture woodworking bug truly kicked in when Guy and his wife, Naomi, settled into their home in the Spyglass Hill neighborhood in 2014.
Guy is a radiologist and Air Force veteran who landed in Omaha with his family when he was assigned to Offutt Air Force Base. After retiring last year, he founded Transparent Imaging, which works as a radiology contractor for base personnel. In addition, some weekends see Guy practicing telemedicine radiology for a company that serves medical practices across the United States.
The years of hard work called for a release, and Naomi’s creative eye spied projects that would transform their house into a home.
“It’s one of those things where you have a vision, and a plan, and [then you] draw it out and see it come together,” Guy says.
The creative centerpiece of the Gibson home is a thick, 8-feet-by-3-feet Douglas fir dining room table with quite the backstory.
Naomi wanted a table made of reclaimed wood, like she had seen on home improvement shows. This led the couple to Ankeny, Iowa, where they obtained beams from an old John Deere factory that served as an ordnance plant during World War II. Guy crafted the tabletop in the basement by joining two wood slabs and built its hefty, column-like table legs.
“If we wanted a table like this, it would have cost two or three thousand dollars,” Naomi says. “Now we can come in here every night and eat dinner, which I love. The kids had friends come over for Christmas—14 kids packed on this table, it was fantastic.”
Other impressive, large woodworking pieces give the home a unique appeal. Floor-to-ceiling cabinets and bookcases create an attractive space around the large-screen television and fireplace mantle.
And in the bedroom of one of the daughters, Guy designed a custom-built desk and tempered-glass cabinet doors that look like a scene found in the girl’s early childhood obsession—the Harry Potter movies.
The doors have mailbox slots like Harry’s home, and two desk drawers have tiny hidden compartments where Guy, before he went on a deployment, hid a secret poem the girls had to find through a scavenger hunt.
Guy finds his hobby both calming and practical.
“It has a dual purpose, I guess,” Guy explains. “It’s an outlet, and then you get the functional piece that comes out of it as well, which is nice. There is the challenge to problem-solve the entire time, because most of this stuff I have never built before. There is a lot of measuring, sketching, creating a build list, and then eventually you get it completed.”
Guy’s skills also fuel Naomi’s deep interest in do-it-yourself projects.
“I know woodworking for Guy is a serious stress reliever,” Naomi says. “He’s in his element when he can work. When I do projects, he always helps me out.”
This article was printed in the June 2019 edition of B2B. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.