Lydia Manter

Maine, USA

Years creating surf art: I always enjoyed my art classes when I was a child in grade school, but after that I didn’t really come back to creating art until I was about 21. So in the past four years or so I have I pursed it more seriously and have found a niche in surf related illustration.

Instagram: @lydiamanter

What/who inspired you to start creating surf art? I am hugely inspired by surfing and just the ocean in general. Surfing is one of the greatest joys in my life and to be able to create art inspired by one of my passions has been incredibly rewarding and fun. I originally started painting on surfboards a few years ago after a surf trip to Costa Rica. I met an artist from there who was painting boards for local pros and travelers, he could tell I was super enamored with the concept and he had me practice on a couple of beater boards of his. He taught me the process and I went home to Maui wanting to get my hands on as many boards as possible to paint on. I painted boards for a while and then surf fins mounted on frames, then that evolved more specifically to surf related illustration, especially in the last year or so.

Is being a female surf artist come with its own set of challenges? The biggest challenge I’ve faced so far as an artist and entrepreneur is trying to remain very present with a “one step at a time” mentality. Sometimes I get stuck on the big picture and it can be exciting to dream up all the ideas and things I want to do within my career, but it can also very overwhelming and it can take me away from what I’m doing now. The other big challenge has been being your own boss means it’s all on you, so that has it’s set of challenges in of itself. I’ve spent a ton of time doing research and teaching myself things that I never went to school for, which has been rewarding, but difficult at times.

Favorite part of the art process? My favorite process of creating art is the moment I get a new idea and I just have to get it down on paper. Sometimes it might come off as obsessive, I suppose, but it’s exciting and fulfilling to put what comes up in my mind into something tangible.

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