(Photo: Laurent Chantegros)
I LOVE shaping surfboards and I'm kinda obsessed with this craft. Even though I am about to shape my 145th board I'm still considering myself as a novice but I hope to become a master one day... This blog is a virtual portfolio and a diary of my journey in the shaping world. Feel free to leave comments or contact me directly at valerie@meremadesurfboards.com.



Valerie Duprat
-Shaper of Mère-Made Surfboards

Saturday, February 11, 2017

board#125: egg for Maylane

Isn't she a beauty? I am talking about Maylane!!!

Dimensions: 6'6 x 21 5/8 x 2 5/8
[completed in September 2016] 
Vintage 17 model

The story: like her twin sister Laurane [see board#102], Maylane fully embraces her new californian lifestyle since her family moved to California two years ago. Therefore she really wants to give surfing a try. This board is her first non-foamy surfboard ! And I was so happy she picked me to shape her first real surfboard!

The shape: since Maylane has to get familiar to her new water activity, I decided to make her an easy to-paddle-in-the-wave board on which she can improve on for some time and also easy to carry under the arm. 

The artwork: It is Maylane's grand-father himself who created the digital artwork for especially for her. It features edelweiss' flowers which symbolize Switzerland (Maylane's country) intermingled with hibiscus found in SoCal. It was printed out on fiberglass by Boardlams to create that wrap-around-rail effect.

With her sister Laurane who got a board too :)

Sunday, January 22, 2017

board#124: noserider for Kendra

Dimensions: 9'0 x 23 1/2 x 3 1/8
[completed in March 2016]

The story: Gauthier and Kendra is a sweet couple from San Francisco. They both surf and they both picked me as their shaper for their new board. It was Kendra's idea as she liked the fact she would have a female shaper making her board. There is actually more behind that. Unfortunately Kendra had already ordered a custom board from a shaper in the Bay area. However when she picked it up, she realized that the board was extra heavy and the artwork/glass looked like it was rushed. She was so disappointed that she contacted me with the hope, as a woman, I would be more careful to details. It was therefore an interesting case where I had to compete with a board which existed already. Only I had to make it better. Pressure.

The shape: I followed the outline of the actual (defective) board since according to Kendra the shape was fine. It was a classic noserider shape with  squash tail and a spoon. For the details,  I made it a "Mere-Made Surfboard" because each shaper has his/her own style :)

The artwork: I had a very precise document in hand. Probably the most detailed and fancy sketch I ever received. It was created by Gauthier and showed me exactly what to do. I fell in love with that artwork which helped me going through that very technical spray. Basically I needed to create the effect of a resin tint but with spray paint. For each color I needed to mask/tape the whole board. And there were 5 colors... The time spent on this board was definitely extensive but so worth it !

The testimonial: I passed!!!! Kendra loved her board, so much more than than the original version she was so disappointed in! Plus I saw her riding it for the first time. Mission accomplished!

Document sent for Gauthier for the artwork...

Thursday, January 5, 2017

board#123: shortboard for Danielle

Danielle with her new shortboard

Dimensions: 6'2 x 23 x 2 3/4
[completed in April 2016]

The story: I am the one who contacted Danielle. I found her art on FB, randomly. Her artist name was Mermamamigration and her art centered around the Ocean, including mermaids!... Of course she was a surfer and I wrote to her : "we are meant to collaborate".  Shortly after we met in person and we decided to make a surfboard together: I would be the shaper, she would be the guest artist. 

The shape: Danielle wanted a shorter board than her 7'2 to have a more "performance" board. The challenge was to keep enough volume to be able to ride in most of the conditions in SoCal without losing to much of the "fast board" characteristic. Also keeping a bit of rocker for bigger days. I based my shape on the Average Joe board from Lost with a squash tail and round rails. I put my single to double concave signature for speed.

The artwork: I was so pleased to have Danielle work on her board. A real painter ! I just gave her recommendations about what the foam and resin can handle in term of paint and quantity. I handed her the shaped blank and she did her magic. When she brought the board back for glassing I was totally in love with what she did: ocean creatures floating in teal/blue waters. Everything I would liken my own board! I am so happy our project resulted in such a cool piece of art she can surf whenever she feels like shortboarding!

painted foam before glass (artwork by Danielle)

painted foam before glass (artwork by Danielle)

Danielle signing her art !!