Face it. A plain white board is as boring as a rice cake. What starts as a vanilla canvas lends itself to a myriad of colourful opportunities, so don't miss the chance to give your board some personality. Bright is better bru.
Surfboards have gone through various cycles. During the 70’s and 80’s pretty much all boards were coloured. Cos hey - if the decade was all about lumo you sure as hang weren't gonna have ice white boards now were ya? Solid colours were the go, with some rail contrasts and inserts thrown in. The 80's were all about geometric and abstract designs.
The 90's tried to swing back to minimal colour but everyone soon realised that boards that were as bland as Swiss furniture weren't cutting it. Thankfully in recent years there's been a resurgence in the use of colour.
The desire for an original look is hardly new. There have been some iconic sprays over the years, with lil nuggets of board art defining legendary surfers and particular era's. Anyone remember Kelly's girl phase back around '94/'95? Musta been how he dealt with the Pamela Anderson break-up? And his red, yellow, green and blue board immortalised in the Quicksilver Crossing?
How about Andy's Rising Sun, which launched what must be one of Billabong's most famous boardshorts of all time.
Turn the clock back even further and the bright and bold crew were spearheaded by the likes of Gerry Lopez with his famous Lightening Bolt and Mark Richards with his Superman boards.
Thankfully the current crop of surfers aren't scared of some colour either. Julian Wilson loves his pink, Ozzie Wright is all rainbows and unicorns and Jordy celebrated Madiba's 95th Birthday with a classic spray.
Filipe flips out for a bit of colour and don't reckon he's ever been seen on a plain white board. Owen Wright made the monster claw famous. Italo Ferreria might not be the best known surfer on the CT - but he sure has the brightest quiver. All in all there's not that many boring boards on tour. Which is a good thing. Cos sometimes the waves on tour are boring. But the boards. Never.
Trends in board spray goes out of fashion quite quick, cos surfing is all about individuality. No one really wants to be walking down the beach with a replica of someone else’s exact board.
Getting your board inked is a way of getting your message out there. Gatvol with the world? Give it the middle finger. Got something to say about politics, stick it on that bottom deck. Like prawns? Show 'em some love. Punk rock roots? Throw in a skull or two.
Surfboard colours 'n designs also help heaps when it comes to working out who's who in the line-up. Most of the time you won't know an ou's name, but when trying to describe him to someone you can go "the guy with red & orange board" which narrows it down significantly. If you the ou with the white board, well then you're consigned to obscurity.
Nothing makes a rad surf shot better than having some colour thrown into the mix. One way to get better surf shots of yourself is to brighten your board up. Speaking from personal experience as someone who's turns are more 9 'o clock than 12 o'clock that bit of colour helps to save an otherwise boring pic.
If you're not into garish sprays you can still get your groove on with some smooth lines or just a plain solid colour. Anything is better than white. Really.
It doesn't have to break the bank either - a bit of home-made liveliness from the 'ol Posca pen or spray can is just as good.
JBay's Stephen van der Watt is a local who's absolutely wicked with a set of Posca's, and'll whip you up everything from a pineapple to a skelli to a JBay line-up.
Solid colour sprays are pretty big these days, so does the colour you choose say anything about you? Turns out there is such a thing as the psychology of color, and is all about how colors play a hand in our personalities and behavioral traits. Probably about as scientific as star signs. but let's see what they say anyhow just for a laugh.
Blue seems to be a popular colour these days, so let's kick off with that. According to the colour expert peeps if you dig blue you're "calm, cool, and reliable, with a deep need to find inner peace and truth, to live their life according to their ideals and beliefs without having to change their inflexible viewpoint of life to satisfy others."
Red board? Those who love red live life to the fullest and are tenacious and determined in their endeavors. If your favorite color is red, you are action oriented with a deep need for physical fulfillment and to experience life through the five senses.
Orange board? You are friendly and easy going. You have a great need to be with people, to socialize with them, and be accepted and respected as part of a group. You also have a need for challenges in your life, whether it is physical or social challenges.
Green board? You are affectionate, practical, loyal and frank. Green lovers are also aware of what others think of them and consider their reputation very important and as such are refined, civilized and reputable.
Yellow board? You enjoy learning and sharing your knowledge with others. Finding happiness comes easy to you. You have a deep need for logical order in your everyday life and to be able to express your individuality by using your logical mind to inspire and create new ideas.
Purple board? You are artistic and unique. You have a great respect for people. You are very intuitive and often interested in spirituality and the deeper meaning of life. You are compassionate and active, you are a free spirit looking for the secrets of life
Black board? You are strong-willed and determined. You want power and prestige and you are not afraid of going after what you want. You are enigmatic and charming but can often appear intimidating to even your closest colleagues and friends.
There's just something so aesthetically pleasing about a lekker surfboard spray. So ditch the white and embrace the bold. Just like life's too short to waste time with white socks - same goes for that boring white stick.