San Diego Finsmen Founder Jeff Johnson On Creating Art & Surf Apparel
The brand Finsmen was born in 2012. For San Diego native and artist Jeff Johnson, who grew up surfing and has always made it a large part of his life, launching the brand was the next step. The idea behind the brand is to bring photography and various other forms of art alive through apparel, and Johnson has done this by working with a group of other like-minded surfers and artists, including Brad Masters and Laserwolf, to name a few.
“In my professional career, I was focused on designing and ‘concepting’ for other brands across different industries that I wasn’t really connected with,” says Johnson. ” I wanted to take what I knew and apply it to the culture and lifestyle that I was a part of.”
The brand has also recently teamed up with Proctor Surfboards, a Ventura-based surfboard company headed up by surf shaper Todd Procter. The collaboration, consisting of a photography-based graphic, conveys the message: “The Journey is the Destination.”
“I wanted to capture some of the essence of the journey that is the custom, handcrafted surfboard—where old-world art techniques collide with futuristic materials,” says Proctor. “A personal odyssey beginning as a vision of how the shape will interface with a certain kind of wave; ridden by a certain kind of surfer, and creating a one-of-a-kind synergy. The thought, the precision, the form and function, the passion and the joy that is under our feet.”
We caught up with Johnson to hear more about bringing Finsmen to life, and what he has planned for the brand in the near future….