Author: Maria Brophy

Circle of Life on Canvas by Drew BrophyFor the past 6 years or so Drew’s been creating a new painting for the Ocean-Institute’s summer program flyers and t-shirts.  They’ll also use the art on huge banners (about 15′ x 20′) to hang on the side of their building every year.

The Ocean-Institute is an organization based out of Dana Point, Ca.  Their mission is to inspire all generations, through education, to become responsible stewards of our oceans.  Their vision is to be the world’s best experiential ocean educational organization.

Drew loves what the Ocean-Institute does to teach people, particularly kids, about the ocean and protecting our environment.  He really loves creating art for them every year.  And, working with the President, Bentley Cavazzi, is always a joy.  Bentley is one of those rare individuals that not only understands art, but also gives Drew a lot of leeway on the creative end of it.

This year Drew decided to paint a slightly different look.  Instead of the paint pens, he used a combination of spray paint and then airbrushing (for the background, to create an under-water effect) and then acrylic paints with brushes.

His goal was to create a soft, under-water circle of life without the hard edges, emanating somewhat of a subtle energy.  I think he pulled it off nicely.

The end result:  A 6′ x 4′ Acrylic on Canvas, beautiful, about to be framed, sold & hung!  (If you are interested in buying it, click here.)

We allow the Ocean-Institute use the artwork, but we keep the original.  So once we frame it, we’ll place it in an upcoming art exhibit that Drew will have at the Ocean-Institute, and make it available for purchase.


Aaron Chang signing his page of SURF STORY

Aaron Chang, signing his page in Surf Story

Robb Havassy just made history in the surf world, but most people won’t realize it for at least 20 years.

That’s how historical events usually go – first there’s conception, then benign interest, then slowly people begin to see the vision, then 20 years goes by before everyone agrees that it was an important shift.

Two years ago, when Robb asked Drew to write a story for this project, we weren’t sure how serious he was.  So many people say that they are going to publish a book, yet they quit once they find out how difficult it is.

But “difficult” doesn’t stop Robb Havassy. Despite roadblocks and challenges, The Surf Story Project was born and has become a truly (more…)


Surfer's Sanctuary Painting (c) Drew Brophy

Drew’s been busy painting all sorts of projects right now in a mad dash to get things done before we leave for Myrtle Beach this weekend.

He’s been finishing up paintings to sell online (they sell about as fast as we can post them) and surfboards for clients’ kids.  Right now there are 6 surfboards in the studio just about finished!

After these boards are finished, he has two more big paintings to finish before Thursday for the Hurley Exhibit!  (2 Days to paint these….)  And then there are also those 2 little paintings that need finishing….

Anyway, I thought I’d post a slide show of some of the fun little paintings and sketches that Drew’s done these past 2 months.  Many are sold, there’s a few left, and he still has 2 more to complete.  Enjoy the slide show!


Last week Drew was hired to go to Nordstroms at The Grove in LA to paint Ugg Australia boots, alongside Cory Miller of LA Ink.

When he arrived, there was a line of people waiting to get their boots painted!  The demand was so high that they asked Drew to stay 2 extra hours.

The most popular technique requested that day by shoppers was the airbrushing of Drew’s hand-made stencils of dragons, skulls and flowers.


Here are some photos from the Nordstrom’s event:

Stenciled Skull (c) Drew Brophy Dec 2009

Stenciled Skull (c) Drew Brophy Dec 2009

Stencil Artwork (c) Drew Brophy Dec 2009

Happy Customer! Artwork (c) Drew Brophy Dec 2009

Stencil Art (c) Drew Brophy Dec 2009

Stencil Art (c) Drew Brophy Dec 2009

Drew Brophy Surfboard Stands at Hard Rock Casino, Las VegasWe got this question from an artist in Hawaii:

Hi. I’ve been asked to paint on a used board. I’m just not sure how to price it. Can you recommend a starting range. Should I just price it like a regular painting? Thanks for your help!  Aloha, Kara

Kara, this is a great question, and I think that surfboard artists everywhere should somehow format a similar pricing structure.

First, make up a price sheet for yourself.  Second, be sure to charge extra for used boards, because more time is involved to prepare them for painting.

And to answer the part of the question about “Should I price it like a regular painting?”:  We have two different price sheets for painted surfboards.  One for real art, and one just for board decoration.

REAL ART TO HANG ON THE WALL: The first price sheet is for true pieces of art that will be hung.  These are priced like any painting and pricing begins at $3,500.00 (includes the board) and goes up to $20,000, depending on the size and complexity of the subject matter.

BOARD DECORATION: This second price sheet is for all surfboard paintings that are meant to decorate a board that will be ridden.  The board is supplied by the customer.

Pricing for this starts at $75.00 and can go up to $2,000, depending on the size of the board, the painting, and the complexity.

What you get for $75.00 is what we call a small board “tattoo”.  Usually a little “hit” painted on the rail, or a small character or wave on the nose of the board.

What you get for $120 is a larger painting, still on the nose or a small section of the board, but of greater complexity, like a beach scene or a sexy mermaid.

Most of our customers ask for a $250 paint job, which covers about a third to half of the surfboard and is a beautiful painting that they can proudly show off when surfing.

A full board painting, of course, will cost in the $500 – $2,000 range.

REGARDING PAYMENT: Make sure that payment is made at the time that the board is picked up.  No board leaves our studio unless I’ve been paid in full (cash preferably).

CHARGE EXTRA FOR USED BOARDS: We require that they bring it with wax completely scraped off.  We also add $20.00 for used boards, because even with the wax cleaned off, it takes a lot of extra time prepping it for painting to remove the residue.

MAKE A PRICE SHEET that details the different painting prices for different types of board decoration.

I wish you the best of luck!  Please, feel free to ask any other questions on this topic.  We’re here to help.

spunk-brophy-head-shotMaria “Spunk” Brophy xxoo

PS:  Check out my business blog for artists