David Carson is arguably one of the worlds most recognised graphic designers. his experimental, deconstructed typographic style is a fusion of the commercial and the expressive, graphic design and art.

From 1982 to 1987, Carson worked as a teacher and also at that time was also a professional surfer, reaching 9th in the world ranking. Carson himself often attributes his recognisable style to discovering graphic design and never being taught it. Without knowing any of the rules has allowed him the freedom to not be confined by convention. To read more on Carson click link to visit his website: David Carson Design.

I also love his humour filed, motivating TED presentation. Click here to view.

Quotes by David Carson:

“Graphic design will save the world right after rock and roll does.”

“I’ve never had a problem with a dumb client. There is no such thing as a bad client. Part of our job is to do good work and get the client to accept it.”


David Carson - All For a Few Good Waves from Dress Code on Vimeo.

All For a Few Good Waves is a short, beautifully shot documentary that presents an interesting insight into the reclusive side of the designers life, almost at odds with him being one of the worlds most renown graphic designers. We get to witness his love of surfing and some of his unconventional working practices.

Below is a short write up from the films creators, Dress Code:

David Carson is arguably the world’s most well known graphic designer. All For a Few Good Waves is a short documentary portrait offering a raw glimpse into the life and work of David, an uncompromising genius, who refuses to be anyone but himself.

After a career as a top ranked pro surfer and high school sociology teacher, he rose to prominence in the 90’s after art directing Transworld, Beach Culture and Ray Gun Magazines before going on to start his studio. With no formal design training, Carson took the design world by storm, upending conventions and breaking traditional rules he didn’t even know existed.



Starring: David Carson + Ola Carson

Produced and Directed by: Dress Code (dresscodeny.com)

Executive Producers: Dan Covert + Andre Andreev

Producer: Tara Rose Stromberg

Cinematography + Sound Record: Andre Andreev

Edit + Color: Mike Cook

Assistant Camera: Mercy Lomelin

Production Cordinator: Rose Glaeser

End Titles: Mike Cook + Mercy Lomelin

Music + Sound Design: YouTooCanWoo

Shot on Location in Tortola, BVI over a couple years on:

A Red Epic, a GoPro Hero 3, and a Black Magic Pocket Cinema Camera