After a two-day Former retail event in Surry Hills, Sydney earlier this year, Craig Anderson and Dane Reynolds traveled with photographer / cinematographer Jon Frank for mutant refractions and temperamental reef breaks along Oz’s South Coast. “I spend a lot of time surfing down there,” Ando says. “You can find a lot of unique and exciting waves. I have been chasing a lot of reefs and weird wedges down there, partly because they are really fun to surf, but also because I’ve been hanging with a different crowd of surfers, trying to chase waves that your average surfer isn’t interested in.”
The rocky coastline and explosive surf provided Frank the backdrop to spot what he spots best: a suspended beauty in lawless elements, a purist’s style that’s earned him the respect of artists across the world.
“Jon Frank is a blessing to the surf industry,” Ando says. “He has a timeless eye that’s photographed surfing for a long time. He hadn’t shot surfing photos for awhile, from my understanding, and has been working on video and art projects, so it was really nice to have him capture us surfing. Jon makes me look better than I am, and does it in a real unassuming way.”
As for Former, its official launch in February already feels distant, as Ando, Reynolds, Warren Smith, and team are in the full swing of product promotion, content editing, and the other labors needed to jumpstart a brand. But for Ando, the journey still feels as fresh as it did from Day One, a goal that’s all the more natural when Dane runs as your friend and co-pilot.
“Dane is great to surf with,” Ando says. “Not only does he bring a lot of laughs, but he brings the best out of you. On this trip, he did the biggest air I’d ever seen in person. It’s super-exciting being involved with friends in a brand and not having to answer to anyone. No upper management, no outside investors. Just us making and doing things we want.”