Ensō 円相 The circle symbolizes the absolute enlightenment and the void. The circle is executed with a single fluid brushstroke, and in one breath, representing a reflection of the artist in the moment in which it was brushed. It is said that only someone who is inwardly collected and in equilibrium is capable of painting a strong and well-balanced enso.
All packages will come with a hand-brushed and seal-stamped enso in place of the industry standard package flair.
The idea behind ensofb is feeling. Over the last few years of my life, I have gone through quite a journey of self discovery and healing. I have learned that feelings are in the body, and feeling has become the major focus in the crafting of these fingerboards.
I celebrated this inward journey with my first tattoo, a tattoo of an enso on a lotus with four zen stones inside the enso. Each stone radiates the color of one of the four core feelings. Yellow for joy, blue for sadness, red for anger, and black for fear. The enso represents zen, enlightenment, and being in the moment. The stones represent balance, and the lotus represents perfection of form. This tattoo is a reminder that I am perfect the way that I am, that I can be at peace with my emotions, and that while they do not define me, they are still a part of me and it is up to me to accept them and balance them through meditation, and practice.
This eventually lead me to the five petal lotus. One of my earlier decks, the first one I ever made actually, had a hand painted enso(a genuine enso, painted with one continuous brush stroke) with a lotus in the center with five petals. Each petal was painted in a corresponding color for one of the four core feelings and the petal in the center was painted white to represent all colors, all emotions, all parts, as one, personal truth if you will.
Today, the simple enso with the white, five petal lotus is the image that best represents everything that enso fingerboards is. It is an idea, an ideal, and a concept that I hope is felt in each one of these decks. Feelings are in the body after all, and I hope that each of you can FEEL the love, the intent, the attention to detail, and the concepts of this vision, whenever you sesh one of these decks.
Image is a big deal within any industry. How a brand is seen can affect how it is received. It is not my intention to limit ensofb to any one particular color pallet or visual style, but the concept of the vision is important and so you will see this represented in many of the graphics ensofb produces.
You may also notice that there are more yellow/purple options than others. This is not because I want yellow and purple to be our brand theme, but because of what these colors represent. Depending on your school of thought, you may or may not know how color vibration is like that of sound. There is a color scale that is mirrored by the sound scale and vice versa.
The key of E is represented by, and has the same vibration as the color yellow(not purple as other schools of thought suggest, purple is the harmonic). Yellow is non-moving, neutral color, and is good for centering. This is also the vibration of joy. Not to be mistaken with happiness, joy is where the "yes-current" flows. Whenever you are doing something that comes naturally, feels almost effortless, and brings you that grounding sense of "this is where I am meant to be", that is yes-current, that is joy.
Any and all decks that have yellow/purple themes will be referred to as the "joy note" series, and I intend to make many of these, as this theme and energy is yet another aspect of the enso vision.
The two shapes currently in inventory are the Shoshin and the Roshi. Both use the same mold which is a low medium mold with medium concave.
The Roshi is the original shape, designed with precise and specific features to provide an incredible balance of performance and feel, give plenty of lift for its low profile, and make rotations a bit more snappy. The nose is tapered to aid in locking into slides and providing more tight control in your ledge work, and the tail is round for fluid scoops. This shape is the oldest, the original, and in the process of developing and perfecting this shape, I have learned a lot. It has truly earned its name as the old teacher.
The Shoshin shape started out as an adaptation of the Roshi. It has a slight taper to both kicks, yet has a slight boxiness to it. This shape was designed with the intention of allowing for more fluidity, provide a little more stability in the slides, and provide a more traditional skateboard look and feel. This deck is for those who want to think less, feel more, and just go with the flow. In the spirit of open mindedness, and a lack of preconceptions, the name Shoshin was given.
Below are the definitions of the terms taken from the Glossary of Zen Terms.
Shoshin 初心 is a concept in Zen Buddhism meaning "beginner's mind". It refers to having an attitude of openness, eagerness, and lack of preconceptions when studying a subject, even when studying at an advanced level, just as a beginner in that subject would. The term is especially used in the study of Zen Buddhism and Japanese martial arts. The phrase is also used in the title of the book Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind by the Zen teacher Shunryu Suzuki, who says the following about the correct approach to Zen practice: ”In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, in the expert's mind there are few.” (Shoshin also means "correct truth" and is used to denote a genuine signature on art works or to refer to any thing or person that is genuine.) The new Shaolin shape is also based on the Shoshin mold.
Rōshi 老師 Lit., "old teacher" or "elder master", Zen monastic master. In the Sōtō organization roughly synonymous with shike; “venerable (spiritual) teacher”.
Feel is the focus. It really is that simple. I have never looked for a deck that made tricks easier. I always looked for a deck that felt great. I hope you all find the same pleasure in the feel of these decks as I have.