Our idea for Adobe Creative Residency

Describe your project in 2 sentences

We are a graphic designer/architect, surfer-freediver, husband and wife duo and we wish to explore together the visual concept of “surface” on a 3D surface—a surf board.

Our collaborative canvas will be the entire (top and bottom) surface of 12 identical retro fish 6’  surfboards, making one each month.

The content we’ll create

12 identical retro fish 6’ tall surfboards. The decks will always be about what is above, the bottom sides of the boards what is below (under water).

When we surf on a wave, there is an over (SUR) and an under (SUB) surface. Caroline and Jesse are avid ocean lovers, being both freedivers and surfers we see both sides of the surface. The ocean is the mother. We want to make personal art that is about our journey together into deeper love, flying through the air, or floating weightless beneath the water. We also want to talk about ocean and earth conservation.

What will the images look like? Please see our sample design and sketches of other ideas, but we would like to keep this open to new interpretations of the concept, too.

We do feel, however, that it’s important that all of the boards (canvasses) are the same size and shape. Later we can arrange all 12 boards in a variety of ways and have a drone shoot them from above!

Overview of 12 month timeline.

Jesse will be the design lead on this project, and he will be the principal person who travels, speaks, etc. (Caroline has a full time job, but Jesse has a flexible schedule.)

We’ll create 1 board per month, on the 15th of the month. Board graphics will be sent to an outfit on the mainland for printing. Then we’ll give that artwork (on rice paper) to the shaper and glasser. These will be gallery-quality finished surf boards that are also surf-able. If you would like to see shape and size, please look at this board.

The Adobe boards, Unlike this board, will be high-shine gallery-quality  surf boards.

Overall goals:

To grow as artists, professionals, humans on the planet, and to grow deeper in love together as a creative couple.

Rough budget:

  • $1000. per surfboard to make (X 12 surfboards = $12,000)
  • $1000. for 1 day of drone videography of us surfing, diving, and shots of the boards from above for social media sharing.

How does this project build off of your previous work?

Jesse has created 2 surfboards of same shape (twin-fin retro fish) twice before. The most recent one was created late 2016. We will use the same graphics company to output the graphics on special paper.

Jesse has a history of designing skateboard decks. He used to do a project called “Skateboard Deck of the Week”, where he designed a skateboard deck per week as a personal design exercise. It was written up in the paper, and over 100 skateboard designs were completed.

How do you plan to share your project with the creative community?

During design phase and build phase we will take images and video and share on social media.

Additionally, Once all 12 Boards are completed, they will look very good when all lined up as a set, because they are all the same size. We could arrange them in cool ways, for instance lay them all out on a lawn like a flower, or all pointing in the same direction like an arrow, etc. Then we could shoot that with a drone (included in my budget). Also with this drone we could A) potentially shoot us snorkeling with dolphins at nearby Makua Bay, and B) get drone footage of us surfing at Diamond Head.

The platforms Jesse and Caroline will share on: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest.

Jesse’s work website


Jesse’s social media accounts

Instagram  Facebook  Pinterest

Caroline’s work website

Geoffrey Lewis Architect, Inc.

Caroline’s social media accounts

Instagram  Pinterest


What do you want the community to learn from your project?

As humans we must be shepherds of this planet. Here in Hawai‘i, we can easily see the depleted ocean. No fish. Invasive species gaining ground and reef. The mother is getting tired and weary, on her knees actually, because she’s got a lot of poison in her now.

Also we’d hope they see our life and creative processes and hopefully come away inspired that you can do anything you want, be anything you want, and live creatively.


Please share projects that represent the quality of work you’ll make during the Adobe Creative Residency?

Something like these 3 Sample  boards that Caroline and I just made.

  • Each board, top and bottom, will be worked on by both Caroline and Jesse.
  • For each board, the top (deck) will deal with sky imagery, and the bottom will deal with ocean imagery.
  • Each board will be consistent in that the top and bottom of one board will be compatible artwork. (bottom and top will match)
  • Each of the 12 boards will have it’s own identity, and all 12 will be different from each other.

Below: some of Jesse’s past work on skateboard decks.


Please select how you want to share your resume or CV with us

Jesse’s resume 

Caroline’s resume