Article

HANDS ON Shaper Profile with Tim Bessell

| posted on July 22, 2010

Pacing from his shaping bay to his latest art project to his model for sustainable housing, Tim Bessell pulses a frenetic energy through his La Jolla store front. He beams with an energy befitting a rookie as he skips from one project to the next, and for a man with more than three decades’ worth of resin collectively floured on hands, his enthusiasm is encouraging.

Bessell’s conquest is one of global proportions, but despite his far-reaching intentions – it’s all still grounded in the place it began: the blank.

“What I’m working on right now besides the surfboards is my new product called Ear Saver,” says Bessel.

“I’ve got surfer’s ear real bad,” Bessell continues, “And my doctor told me a long time ago take water, vinegar, and alcohol for it. Well, they’d put it in the drop form but it never gets in there (pointing inside his ear). So my contribution is the spray. You just put a few spurts in after you surf and you’re golden. I haven’t had an ear infection in four years cause of this stuff.”

He hands me a bottle; I look at it, and he heads to his next project: art.

“This project right here is with this guy out of New York City. He’s asked me to build these designer chairs so I’ve got a collaboration going with him right now, and that’s really exciting.”

I marvel at the block chair mold for a moment, but he’s already disappeared.

“Then that’s my long term project,” Bessell motions to a scale model of sustainable housing developments resting on a table beside his desk. “We want to make sustainable homes completely off the grid. We’re going to make them for low-income housing, orphanages, and schools all over the world. Everything’s worldwide.”

Worldwide, indeed. Bessell’s conquest is one of global proportions, but despite his far-reaching intentions – it’s all still grounded in the place it began: the blank. His boards have supported the surfing evolution of characters like Brad Gerlach, Peter King, Luke Egan, and many more, but at the core of his chipper, entrepreneurial demeanor is
the board: it’s all about innovating the board.

“I’m about the state of the art,” says Bessell. “The most advanced surfboards. The most advanced technology. The most advanced design. That’s what I’m about.”