History of some Hands

Josh Martin

Back in the late 80’s an influx of requests for a “Terry Martin” surfboard logo prompted some creative action from my dad. The action came in the form of his following statement. “If you want me to have a logo then you are welcome to make me one”. One of the most endearing qualities he had was a genuine interest in others rather than himself. He shunned self-promotion. Creating his own logo was not in his gift mix. I cant recall who it was but someone floating around the Whitegon Glass shop up in Laguna Canyon got the ball rolling. It could have been someone involved in the Gotcha/Dive n’ Surf, MCD or Stussy organizations. Regardless several logos were created.


Screaming eagle.. yikes!

Over the years one of these original designs emerged as his preferred logo. He felt it represented him well. He made a career out of shaping over 80,000 boards. Each and every one with his own pair of hands. The “hands” logo stuck.

Eventually his stock of these laminates and stickers ran out. A request for more to be printed brought about a revelation. My dad had never before expressed his dislike for the outline of the surfboard in the original logo. He felt it didn’t represent something he’d shape! I don't know.. maybe the nose was too pointy? He was informed that it would be no problem to graft in an updated surfboard design into the logo. He simply needed to just sketch out the new shape. “No way” was his reply. “I’m a shaper, I’ve got to shape it”. He grabbed a scrap of foam and shaped up a fine little board that was laid directly into a flat bed scanner and converted into a vectored art file.

Who knew there was a hand shaped by Terry "finger board" out there?? Here's the real deal pictured:

The hand shaped little foam board was incorporated into the new Terry Martin Shapes logo. Lots of his boards from the 90’s – 2012 have this logo on them. Many of you out there spent time in his shaping room watching him hand craft a new board for you. If not a Hobie branded board then these boards generally sport the Terry Martin Shapes logo. I see it in sticker form on the back of cars around town. It’s seen on a few prized t-shirts amongst the surf community as well.

The original “hands” logo lives on today. “Terry” was dropped and it simply reads Martin Shapes now. The legacy of my dads shapes and the influence he has had on my shaping is represented well in its design. Each and every board is hand shaped and will continue to be with love, skill (Skil planers yes) and devotion. We aim to make someone happy in the water. #lovewhatyoudo

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  • @shanedontsurf thanks! ha! you must surf. -Josh

    Joshua Martin

  • Great story! Thanks for sharing!
    Going to order a board from you someday!



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