Exclusive: Surf Legends Collection

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posted by James Willmott

When you think of the term ‘surf legends’, many names immediately spring to mind. Legend, by definition, is ‘An extremely famous or notorious person, especially in a particular field’, or in other words, an individual who performs one step above the rest.

To define our sports true legends, we’ve linked up with the family at Stance to celebrate everything epic from the golden years of surfing. This exclusive collection embodies stand out moments in surfing history that helped shape the sport to what we know and love today. From Occy getting barreled at Sunset, to Tom Carrol’s unforgettable snap in Pipeline’s pocket, this collaboration encompasses special memories that the world, and featured photographer, Jeff Divine will never forget.

To learn more about this epic collaboration, we also caught up with Heath Walker, Director of Lifestyle Marketing at Stance.

Tell us about what inspired this epic collection? We know Stance have also done a Skate Legends collection in the past.
As you get older you appreciate history a little more especially in something that you love so much like surfing. Growing up on the Gold Coast Australia I was in awe of those guys. I couldn’t wait to see their surf travels / contests in the Waves, Tracks, SW or Surfing Life magazines. These guys were like my Jordan’s to most Americans.

What’s crazy is, some kids today who surf don’t even know who they are or what they did in their time. It’s kinda hilarious. When I first came to Stance, I saw what former founder Ryan Kingman did with Skate Legends which was so sick and I was kinda frothing, so I pitched Surf Legends too.

What makes Jeff Divine’s images so special and why was he chosen as the featured photographer?
There are some legendary surf photographers whom I believe are iconic. Just to name a few Ted Grambeau, Art Brewer, Flame, Peter Wilson, Bernard Testimale and of course, Jeff Devine. I know there are many more, but these guys captured some of the most amazing images during their time, they stuck it out through the highs and lows and saw and evolution of surf from the 70’s through till today.

You only have to take one look at Jeff’s book. It takes you away to another place where you get totally stoked on surf, the industry and the people whom make it amazing. It makes you want to run to the nearest beach for a flare.

What surfers and moments feature in the Surf Legends collection?
From my opinion, I don’t think there will ever be a more gifted surfer to come along and do what Occy did. From Bells, Reunion, Indo, Gnarloo and Mundaka, he was just ahead of his time. The modern day Benjiman Button. His image at Sunset is just so iconic and that fact that he is only setting up a tube on the inside makes it even more radical. It’s all about the surfer, the photographer and the moment. Jeff nailed it. They all nailed it.

Weather it was 2 foot Huntington Beach slop, pumping Jay Bay or even heavy Pipe and Back Door, Curren was and still is like fine wine. He was the American hero in the 80’s and 90’s. I could waffle on for paragraphs after paragraphs, but in short they guys style and technique was flawless. He just never did anything bad… like ever…

Carroll’s snap at Pipe was no fluke. By knowing TC a little bit and watching him surf over the years, I bet he had that planned over a couple of seasons and just waited for the right moment. It blew the beach to bits.

To me, it wasn’t just the snap its was the whole show. A man about 5’5 from Newport Beach Sydney, one of the best airbrushes in the business, 7’6 (give or take an inch or two) Rawson gun, short jon / wrestle suit / helmet combo, one amazing blonde fro and the first surfer to sign a million dollar contract. Amazing…

Potz’s, Strange Desires, World Title, Long Hair, Angry competitor, South African growing up in Sydney and as he stated surfing above his level to prove his talent in Hawaii. Probably one of the most influential World Champions of his time. Gritty, raw and brash. Also, cant forget about his Blue Hawaii flame sprays. Come on, who had one? Guilty!

Archie, was the king at Back Door and Off The Wall. Known for his airs that would rival with Fletcher on the beaches of Southern California, Archie quivered up a batch of 6 deep swallows and destroyed the open face after coming out of pit after pit on the North Shore. His lay back drop wallets were so sick. Buckets all over the joint! He was the full “I don’t give a f**k, Give me a Budweiser.” 

The rad thing about Archie was that he really was an all round talented surfer. Great to watch. Still give him a Budweiser.

I know Christian doesn’t really like the photos from Lowers lefts and over the years he was such a stand out surfer at Pipe and Chopes, but I was about that era that time at Lowers where he was wearing a pink wetsuit and owning the lefts with his rad airs. Christian was such a punk but in a rad way. So much friken style and grit. I think he really complements the group, especially what he was doing in this time period.

How and why did you pick these perfect moments in surfing history for the socks themselves?
It was really hard, we needed the images to be shot vertical so they can fit on the sock. There were so many rad images that we had to pass by because they just didn’t fit.

Describe the process of putting the image onto the socks?
Sublimated through a production process. Here’s the deal. Our socks are second to none and with a timeless image of an iconic pack of legends shot by Jeff Devine, you cant go wrong!

What pair will we catch you wearing?
Carroll’s snap on the left and Pottz on the right…. boom!