The unknown ocean

the mechanics of surfing that the creative process

Over thirty years ago, as a teen, I used to drive to the beach and watch the surfers in the waves.

This was long before I surfed.

While watching, I couldn’t understand why they took some waves and didn’t ride others.

I didn’t understand why they would stop riding a wave when from where I sat, there seemed to be more to surf.

I didn’t understand why because I didn’t understand surfing.

Wave height, wave length, wind, and tide all combined with contours of the ocean floor determine how a wave breaks.

Now that I’ve been surfing for ten years, I have a better understanding of these mechanics.


The ocean is still a mystery.

The wind formed bumps that I play on are still at times elusive and chaotic.

The creative process is a lot like this.

Sure, you can know many of the factors involved in creating a business, making change happen or building a work of art.


There’s always something elusive, chaotic and mysterious about the process.