It’s a funny thing about designing helmets. With his quirky, creative, and perfectionist soul, our founder Michael Morrow can’t help but make the designing of a season’s worth of new helmets an intense affair.
Michael gets his inspiration from all over – from his extensive travels, old and new TV shows (especially SciFi), current culture, stuff seen in the streets of Portland and in his hometown of Corvallis, Oregon.
Final Nutcase helmet designs are usually a rich combination of classic motifs and certain new twists achieved through color, pattern, and placement.
One of the classic recurring motifs you'll see running through our helmet designs could be summed up as 'the lure of the islands.' Think tiki torch, plumeria and hibiscus flowers, warm evenings, and tropical sunsets over the sea.
"For me, Hawaii is an oasis, a place you daydream about and where you mentally sometimes wish you were," Michael says. "It's that combination of sun, surf, skate culture and beautiful beaches that makes it one of the best vacation spots of the world."
In designing 2015's Island Sunset helmet, Michael also ruminated on a consistent quirk of helmet wearers.
Ask which helmet people love and they'll pick something wild and iconic like the Watermelon. Ask them which helmet they want to put on right now and wear as they scoot, skate, or bike away, and three of the five choose a solid color.
In his way, Michael makes helmets like the Island Sunset to challenge people. To choose colors so gorgeous and rich that they pop, and also to find a way to add graphic elements that look great and harken to some themes we can all relate to.
Why wear a wild helmet design? Because if it speaks to you, you'll love it every day that you wear it.
That's the inspiration behind Island Sunset. Warm purple and a burst of island welcome.
"It's the best of both ideas – solid and graphic," Micheal says. "Purple is a mysterious color in a way, mysterious and royal and hard to get right. But then you add those sunny Hawaiian/Polynesian stripes and suddenly this solid says 'Nutcase'."