Diogo Appleton

As we highlight our Classics collection; thoughtfully designed to be our tried and tested styles and made purposefully for like-minded individuals that share an interest in the Rhythm lifestyle, we celebrate the creative community of individuals and friends that inspire and pioneer in different avenues and fields.

Live a day in the life of Diogo Appleton via our latest short film by Felix Gansicke, Showcasing the easy-going yet equal parts introspective personality of our dear friend, surfer, shaper and long-standing advocate of the brand. Set in the heart of Diogo’s home break, workshop and local haunts in Lisbon, Portugal. Discover more inisght through a conversation with our brand manager Jacob Byrne to accompany the piece.

Film by Felix Gansicke, Photographs by Marc Vela, interview by Jacob Byrne.

It has been a great to catch up with you and Felix to a film about your everyday life in Portugal. How was the process, and why is home so special to you?

Felix and I became really close when we were filming this piece actually, he spent a few months around Portugal and we instantly felt really comfortable around each other. I am deeply connected to my roots here in Portugal, I am super close to my family, I absolutely love the waves, and I really enjoy the fact that you can have city vibes/beach vibes all in one place, recently I just moved to a new amazing workshop and it has been a really cool experience being able to build surfboards next to such an amazing coastline, so it would be rude not to live here haha.

We have enjoyed watching you grow as a surfer and shaper, do you find your approach and values have evolved over the years?

That’s true, I signed with Rhythm back in 2013 so a lot has changed since then, my approach is naturally different on how to look at surf or surfboards but my values still remain the same, I am very grateful to keep living my life as a surfer and as a surfboard builder.

It seems like shaping is a huge focus of yours. Are there certain goals you would like to achieve, or a particular feeling you try to provide in your craft?

Shaping is definitely one of my main sources of happiness, I think the goal when I make a surfboard is to be able to visualize a particular surfboard that would suit a specific wave, that pursuit for a magic board, will always be a cat and mouse chase. The feeling that I am crazy about is when I am able to control what I am riding so I don’t have to think when I am surfing, that’s when I feel more relaxed and connected.

With travel restrictions easing, what would your ideal surf trip look like?

I am always switching moods when it comes to riding different surfboards and my trip destinations usually happen when I decide what I want to ride based on the wave scenario. Right now, I feel like riding a fish under tropical weather, but maybe in a month, I am pretty sure I will feel like riding a different surf craft, we will have to wait and see.

What is the best way to order a custom surfboard from you?

Instagram, of course, plays a big role in my communication with whoever is interested in ordering a board and made it easier to connect to the people around the world. It’s probably the best platform/way to have a look at my daily work but for those who don’t have an IG account I also have a website that can walk you through my models and breaks it down in a way that is hopefully clear enough so you don’t have any hanging questions before pressing the button, order a board.

Lastly, any words of wisdom for aspiring surfers wishing to shape their own board?

Shaping can be complex and frustrating sometimes, so don’t put too many obstacles in front of you that you cannot control, do things by feeling, always. If you feel lost, go home and get your mind away from the blank and come back the next day. An old friend of mine, called Chris, once said to me that the ocean doesn’t know what you are riding, so don’t put too much pressure on the process, eventually, you will be able to connect all the dots, and remember, it’s not how many boards you make, it’s how well you make them.