Mark Richards. NSW. Australia.

"A bit over 12 months ago, I had a call from Christian out of the blue…he had painted a picture of me and was generously giving it to me. It came down to the old shop on Surf Cargo freight in the truck with all the surfboards and blanks. Subject aside, the painting was beautiful. Christian has an amazing ability to capture expression in faces. He had copied the face from the portrait by Norman Seef, which appeared on the cover of Surfing Magazine int he early 80’s. As much as I was impressed with the work and the size of it, I wasn’t too sure how the family would react if I took home a massive painting of my head….we have a relatively MR-free house…there are very few trophies on display and just a few surfing shots of me in the ‘glory days’. I feel like our home is an escape from the public MR and the family shouldn’t have to live with ‘my history’ in their face every day."

"I kept the painting safely bubble-wrapped in my workroom above the shop…thinking to myself I really should hang it somewhere but not sure where….until the time came to clean out, when we closed the retail business. My wife Jenny was helping, and amongst the mess, discovered the painting one morning and loved it…and promptly took it home and hung it in our stairwell in the living room. My boys came home and were horrified!!!! A huge painting of their Dad’s head dominating the living room!!! They also thought the eyes were following them when they moved around the room and were a bit scared of the lightning bolts. …but while Mark is the boss of the (shaping) Pit, Jenny is the boss of the house…so the painting has stayed!!! and the boys have gotten used to it. As Joel Parkinson famously said ”

"Happy wife..happy life!!”