Wilko's Wetsuit Explosion

19 Apr 2016 0 Share


SURFING WORLD MAGAZINE | Paint It Black, In Association With Rip Curl

EPISODE II

Surfer: Travis Edwards Artist: Matt Wilkinson

When Surfing World and Rip Curl joined forces with artist Travis Edwards and the best surfer on the planet Matt Wilkinson, (according to WSL ratings) for Paint It Black – an experimental art mating with science ritual – the results were always going to be colourful.

The Rip Curl Flash Bomb Zip Free – sleek, sharp, stealthy, stylish – is the high point of wetsuit design with materials, construction and ruthless product testing proving beyond doubt that it is in a class of its own. The suit got a flashy makeover from Trav Ed, RC’s go to man for creative flare, then we shoved Wilko into the thing and sent him out for a shred.

The result? Fireworks on New Years Eve.

*****

It’s so easy to forget just how good wetsuits have become. Many of us would remember the old days when pulling on that thick early neoprene could take up the best part of the morning and then getting the thing off – with blue lips and numb thumbs – well, it could reduce a grown man to tears.

Nowadays, the science behind the best wetsuits is extraordinary and worthy of a much closer look. For example, would it surprise you to know that wetsuits not only trap heat but distribute it evenly to every part of entire body? Did you know that the lightness and stretchiness of the materials is resulting in far more surf time during the cold months due to far less resistance on the body? And did you know that one wetsuit isn’t even made of neoprene anymore?

These are the breakthroughs that continue to make surfing more and more fun the lower the air and water temps drop. And to make all this info nice and easy to digest SW has teamed up with four of the best wetsuit makers in the business and a bunch of cool arty types and painted a bunch of the most cutting edge wetsuits available. The results surprised philosophers and noble laureate worldwide. Who knew art and science could be BFFs?

There are four episodes in the series: 

O'NEILL: EP 1
Surfer: Soli Bailey Artist: Billy Bain

RIP CURL: EP 2
Surfer: Matt Wilkinson Artist: Travis Edwards

PATAGONIA: EP 3
Surfer: Dan Ross Artist: Jess Leitmanis

QUIKSILVER: EP 4
Surfer: Mikey Wright Artist: Brodie Jackson

Wilko in his NYE wettie, Photo by Mark Onorati

Wilko in his NYE wettie, Photo by Mark Onorati


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