The Inertia

Editor’s note: This feature was made possible by our friends at Corkcicle

Album Surfboards’ San Clemente showroom can only be described as a cornucopia of shapes and colors. Growing up, Matt Parker – the mastermind behind Album – says going to his local surf shop or looking at what everyone was riding in the water was horribly rigid in its uniformity. White, long, narrow, thin thrusters were the name of the game. Matt, though, saw the potential. “No one around me was really making or selling boards I wanted to ride, so I decided to make my own,” he says.

In the past 15 years, surfers have generally become more open to experimentation. Still, both visually and functionally the boards coming out of Matt Parker’s Oceanside factory are at times arresting at first glance. Black asymmetrical twins – half gloss half matte finish. Pink retro twins. Blue eggs with gold pinstriping. Nothing, it would seem, is out of bounds.

Matt’s approach to board design is equal parts long hours spent in the shaping bay, then testing shapes in the water as formal training as a graphic artist. In other words, he has a keen eye not just for what pigments and pin lines will look best with a shape, he also knows how he wants boards to function.

A few years ago, Corkcicle – makers of an array of both functional and visually different drinkware and barware – approached Matt for a collaboration. The boards he was making were right in line with their design-focused approach. And last summer, that culminated in giving one lucky attendee of Agenda Long Beach the opportunity to head to Matt’s factory for the day and not only order a custom board but have a hand in shaping it, too.

The winner, Seth, went with a baby blue five fin – with a lightning bolt dividing the glossy nose from the matte deck and tail. And man is she pretty:


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