Nick Pourfard upcycles the very decks you’ve deemed unrideable and turns them into musical works of art.

Name: Nick Pourfard
Age: 23
Hometown: San Diego
Occupation: Owner/Luthier at Prisma Guitars
Company established:  2014
Best trick: BS Hurricane
Favorite video: First Love

The Manifold: Tell us a bit about your background. Are you an artist? A designer?

Nick Pourfard: I like to think of myself as a designer or a problem solver. I think that what I do is thought of as art, but it feels strange to call it that myself.

I have always been into design and how things are made or how they work. I recently graduated college from San Francisco State University in Business Marketing and Industrial Design. I hope that one day I can design something great.

TM: Your work reminded me a lot of the work of artist scuptlor Haroshi. Are you also inspired by him? Regardless, how did you come up with the concept behind Prisma Guitars?

NP: He is really inspiring and a great sculptor/artist. I am not inspired so much by what he is making, as much as I am his process of thinking.

The first time I heard of Haroshi, my brother showed me the guitar he made. I was sad because I had built a guitar from skateboards. Later, I thought about how it was okay because we have different styles and approaches. I respect his patience and perfection.

I started Prisma Guitars as a hobby. I wanted to build something I couldn’t buy. It wasn’t until somebody asked to buy one that I started the business.

TM: You are self taught in woodworking. Tell us about that process. Do you feel you have a good sense of things now?

NP: I began learning from videos and books. I would buy tools, watch safety videos, then build anything that allowed me to use that tool. I was always alone when I worked. It helped me really learn from mistakes and grow my patience.

TM: So it’s pretty obvious music and skating are your passions. Who amongst these fields are your heroes and why? And who would make your wish list as far as making a guitar for.

NP: In skating, my biggest hero is Wes Kremer. He is from my hometown. I grew up watching him. We became friends. I have never met anyone who is more respected by his peers. Yes, he is amazing at skating, but he is also a very genuine guy.

In music, I always listen to Jimi Hendrix. Maybe too much ha! I wish he were alive, so I could send him a guitar.

TM: I saw somewhere that you got to design a guitar for Steve Harris of Iron Maiden. Tell us about that experience and how that came about.

I met his daughter in San Francisco. She told me that her dad would love a guitar. I asked who her dad was, but she didn’t tell me. I found out later and was pretty excited. Definitely gave me some confidence in building. I tried my best to build a guitar that paid homage to his past stage guitars. He liked it!

TM: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

NP: I see this company grown and pushing more limits with this material. I also see this brand becoming a culture brand that people will want to associate with who do and don’t have relation to skating or music.

TM: How many people help you produce your guitars and how many do you produce?

NP: I have 2 people helping me now. I have a guitar tech and another builder.

TM: And lastly, this issue is about instant gratification. What comes to mind when I say that?

NP: That is why I started doing this. I feel good after something I thought of is reality or when someone else appreciates my craftsmanship. It keeps me going.

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