Please note, the following is an abridged version of the original article.
Photos by Bosko & Respondek
Jeez. It was just like that, a click of the fingers, and it was over. Was there much anxiety for you about ‘what next?’
“For sure there was. For me, on one hand there was comfort, stability and a controlled path, and on the other there was massive amounts of uncertainty – but I got to keep my dignity.”
“That’s maybe a little too deep, but you know what I mean? I got paid to go on surf trips put stickers on, wear clothes I wasn’t necessarily psyched on, and a brand message I didn’t really believe in. But I got stability in a pay check. It was that, or take a leap of faith, band together with some of my most talented friends and create something new. Something we all care about and believe In.”
How do you feel about Quik today?
“I still have a great relationship with a few people at Quiksilver. I still love the logo but the brand itself has a lot of mixed messages in my opinion,” Craig uprights himself, looks at me seriously and continues, “They (Quiksilver) support a lot of legends who have shaped that company which is cool, a hand full of guys on the tour and some younger aspiring kids. They make everything from sunglasses to flip flops, 50 different types of hats, boardshorts etc … It’s just a big company that has to turn over cash to keep all its investors happy.
Yeah, welcome to the new surf industry, huh?
“Totally! The industry is in a really weird spot in my opinion. From what Former is, to the state of the World Surfing League (WSL) to Kelly’s wavepools to Billabong doing Andy Warhol collaborations.
I’m not sure if I’m getting more cynical, I’m not open minded enough, or maybe I’m too into what I’m doing, but the rest of the industry all seems strange. I guess it’s evolution and you can’t stop things from going forward. But the wavepool contests, the claims that go down every heat, in every event. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking all those guys and what they do, they are incredible surfers and people, but just none of it really resonates with me, and the future of it all is a little scary to me.”