Maui artist Chad Porter found his refuge in creating masterpieces on surfboards. Since Maui is a surf Mecca, Porter was pretty sure that his dream of designing artistic boards would come true.
Two years ago, Porter and his family established Archival Prints. The name originated from the term “archival print,” which is a print with an ink permanence of 100 years. It will not fade, unlike airbrushing, the usual method for surfboard graphics. These museum quality prints–when applied to the board, collage style –add more originality and quality to a board.
“What I enjoy most about this type of art is the process,” Porter said. “There are many ideas that can be created. Watching others interpret their own definition of beauty and pain, creation, truth and justice is rewarding enough.”
Self-taught, Porter teamed up with renowned custom board designer Jeff Timpone to refine the process of applying collage and photography to an entire surfboard. No longer must surfboards be white; they can highlight the owner’s personality whether it’s sitting on racks or in the water.
“We had an idea to incorporate fine art printing techniques with high-end modern technology, computers, large format archival printing and fine art papers,” Porter said. “We wanted the surfboard to have an entire collage reproduced from an original image glassed in the surfboard.”
After Porter and Timpone broke away from the limitations of the airbrush, they were able to cover all surfaces of a surfboard with expansive photos and artwork. Then they released the boards and started a line.
“It just hit us that it was possible to get any image on a surfboard using an array of techniques and experience,” Porter said. “The application is a process that any glasser and shaper combination can achieve.”
Timpone handcrafts the boards, Gott Glassing provides the glass and Archival Prints creates the fine art reproduction. But one of the hardest challenges Porter and his team face is keeping the artwork non-commercial. They actually don’t want to create artwork that is made just for a sale.
They want the art behind each image created in a unique, distinguished way. Porter stresses that his company is a custom art firm representing artists and helps them get their work out.
Along with art designs, Archival Prints will be setting up an e-commerce site sometime around mid-April. The site will offer apparel, surfboard laminate, reproductions on fine art papers and an artist gallery page, along with options allowing the consumer to create his or her own custom design.
“We are very fortunate to have so many years of expertise supporting our ideas,” Porter said. “Building the business has captured the potential of essential beauty.”
Boards range from $850 to $5,000 and can include full archival prints on the bottom and/or deck. For more information regarding Archival Prints, LLC visit www.archivalprints.net or call 214-5931. MTW