The Wave Whisperer

We’ve all heard the old saying that “necessity is the mother of invention”. For surfboard shaper Jacob Ells, this age-old adage rings especially true. In his early 20’s Jacob found himself a student at the University of California Santa Barbara, living a stone’s throw from the waves of Sands, Devereux, and Campus Point. Caught between a full class load and a Top-Ramen budget, Jacob was itching for a good board but couldn’t fathom shelling out the cash for a new one. There was only one solution.

With some guidance from friends and a few tips on surfboard design, Jacob got his hands on an old blank and shaped himself a board. It wasn’t exactly a polished work of art, but it was magic under his feet. Pretty soon, he was itching for another magic carpet to ride.

Screenshot (254)+_INBLOGJacob in the bay, doing what he loves.

For the next ten years, Jacob dabbled in shaping and board design and “product testing.” He spent a few years sailing across the Pacific, surfing countless waves in solitude, and exploring areas of the planet he’d only seen in pictures. Still, Jacob was thirsty for a more intimate knowledge of surfboard design.

In 2014 he decided to turn his hobby into a profession and he hasn’t looked back since. All Jive Surfboards are hand-shaped by Jacob in Carpinteria, California and the continuous quest for knowledge is what drives Jacob. “It’s funny, the more I shape the less I know,” he says.

As for the boards that don’t come out as planned? “My favorite thing is when I surf one of my boards for the first time and it doesn’t work as expected. After years of surfing my boards, they can still reveal new things.”

Capture_INBLOGIntergalactic surf craft hand shaped by Jacob Ells.

That’s just the kind of guy Jacob is – always finding the stoke. He and his family live minutes away from Rincon Point (one of California’s great breaks), and he’s never too busy to sneak in a quick sesh. “The best part about Rincon is that it’s so diverse – I can have the same amount of fun in a variety of conditions.” As a surfer, a craftsman, and one epic dad, Jacob inspires us to get out there and find our stoke. If you’re in the market for a custom surfboard, look no further than Jive Surf. Tell ’em Toad sent ya.

Screenshot (256)_enderA craftsman, honing his craft.