Off The Clock
With Andrew Teasdale
Inspired by the uniforms worn by the US military during their downtime, our new Depot Shirts will take you from a day in the workshop to an evening at the beach. Made from a mid-weight cotton canvas, they are both durable & wearable- providing a laid-back summer alternative to our classic workwear range.
We sent Andrew Teasdale, surfboard shaper and glasser, a Depot Shirt in sage to put through rigorous testing in his workshop. We learned all about his trade, creative process & how he spends his downtime.
Available in 4 new colourways, our Depot Shirts will look as at home in the workplace as they do off the clock- whether you're spending time with friends, hitting the bar or taking some well-deserved time relaxing in the sun.
P&Co: Tell us a little bit about yourself!
My name is Andy Teasdale and I’m the shaper and glasser for Ziran surfboards. I was born and raised in San Diego, California and have found my way to my ancestral land of Cornwall. Ziran Is a brand myself and artist/ designer Zach Rush started while we were at uni together in Cornwall. The original idea was very fun and free and it all started while we were on a trip back to San Diego where we shaped ourselves surfboards in my parents back yard and glassed the word ziran onto them. ‘Ziran’ - a Taoist concept meaning the self and their relationship to the inevitable change of nature.
What does a typical day look like for you?
A typical day for me would be ideally have an early morning surf before heading into work- I do every part of the board building process myself from the shaping to the glassing and sanding. It’s a lot of work but I take a lot of pride in it and personally have a lot of satisfaction from handing over a board to a customer and know that I’ve been involved in every step. It also keeps the job interesting because I’m not doing one thing constantly day to day. After work I’d hopefully have another surf before dinner and then sleep!
Do you have a favourite project or piece you've worked on?
Yeah definitely, Zach and myself collaborated on some longboards where we inlayed a nose to tail stringer graphic from a hand cut Lino print Zach made, basically like a totem pole style graphic strip all the way down the centre of the board. We were stoked on them and as far as we’re aware nobody has done anything similar!
Where do you find inspiration? Who or what has been your biggest influence?
For myself I find a lot of my boards are influenced by the classic southern Californian shapes that I grew up being surrounded by. Guys like Skip Frye, Stu Kenson, Bob Simmons, Marc Andreini just to name a few are big inspirations. And the fact that Hand shaping has such a strong presence and is very much ingrained in the history around San Diego and southern Californian shapers. I feel like there’s a duty to keep handshaping alive and if us younger guys don’t do it then it might die out with the older generation. For Cornwall I find a lot of inspiration in the large variety of waves we get. It’s great for testing out lots of different kinds of shapes and I love feeling out what everything has to offer myself from 5 foot mini Simmons to 11 foot gliders.
We love that you collaborate with other creatives- why do you think this is important?
The fact that ziran is a collaboration between myself and artist, Zach Rush is really exciting and feel like it’s what makes us unique to other surfboard brands. Having Zach’s art attached to my boards makes it more than a surfboard and bridges that gap toward art from something that would normally just be considered a functional craft.
How do you spend your downtime?
My down time is spent surfing, camping, hanging with friends and family and travelling for surf when I get the money and time to do so.
How do you find a good work/life balance?
There’s not a whole load of money in surfboard building so I find it’s very revolved around the surf and when it’s on. I work hard when there’s no waves but when the waves get good I think it’s important to allow myself the time to go do that. It refreshes my mind and I find I definitely am in a better mood if I’ve been surfing so it’s definitely good to just let go and shut up shop for a bit.
And what’s next for you?
I’ve just opened up a new workshop space and am in the works of planning an opening exhibition with myself and a couple artist to display art and some new surfboards in August, so looking forward to that!