Judging by some of Neil's artworks - which were pretty far out and trippy , the local surf crew were pretty experimental in their substance intake. This painting is quite strange too - the top half is beautiful and flooded with warm light, colourful butterflies and perfect waves / compared with the bottom half which seems to show the downs of drug use , a weird looking merman looking a bit unhappy, smoking from a bong and sitting on giant mushrooms. There is a real narrative to this spray , its not just decoration to make the board look pretty. This is why Neil's art is held in such high regard.
The shape of the board is very similar to others with Wernham sprays of the period , small swallow tail , glassed in wooden fin , and unusual rounded nose which Tris favoured at the time .
Above - Johnny and a Tris
The owner said when he bought it in the early 90s as an alternative to his little thrusters he was told that the artwork was of a secret spot near the Tris factory .
The spray is again by Neil Wernham and I'm positive the 'secret spot' is Chapelporth . There is no freehand airbrushing here , its all done with masking tape building up the edges of the cliffs , the hills and even the lines in the wave faces. Its a time consuming and beautiful piece of work , and Johnny the glasser has playfully cut up the logo to peep over the horizon , and has cut out the little surfer and put him on the Chapelporth wave. So the painting becomes the logo and vice versa - classic.
This is an alternative artwork by Keith Flack with changes from the standard Tris logo . Ganja leaves , the caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland smoking his pipe, and a map of Cornwall and Fance in the top right corner . Tris had a small factory and shop in Fance in the 70s - I'll go into more detail on this when I have a chat with Johnny again.
Johnny's personal board next to the sign of the original Tris factory , taken around '73
Testing water flow over the channels of a very unusual Tris bonzer , with the help of Mick Harlot (flying fish surfboards ). Does this board still exist ??
Thanks to the Tris surf shop and Alex for the help and photos.