The kid they call the cat always lands on his feet. (Frank)

Pivotal Moments In The Life Of Craig Anderson


Hey Craig, tell us about the moment…

…you got recognised in the street by a stranger. I have no idea. There’ve been a couple of instances when girls have completely freaked out, like they start shaking when they put their arm around you for a photo. It feels so bizarre. Over the past few years Instagram has felt like a pivotal change. Everyone’s on social media and they can post it right then and there. It’s cool but it’s an odd thing because I was never in the limelight growing up. Even doing Quiksilver trips back in the day it was all about Julian. Slowly brands started running ads and billboards and whatever and I wasn’t used to it, I don’t think many people do get used to it.

…a surf movie melted your brain. I would say Focus for sure because that was one of the first VHS tapes I got and I just wore the heads down on that thing. I played the Rob Machado and Kalani Robb sections over and over because they were goofy-footers and seeing ’em do little airs and 360s and surf with style and poise freaked me out. Focus was my jam but then Modern Collective too. They had a premiere in Bondi and I remember watching the France section and Dion is doing the biggest, loftiest oops, some of the biggest airs for that time. He doesn’t land one or two and then he makes a real smooth one and I remember seeing that and going, “What. The. Heck.” He was going so high and so hard, it melted my brain.

…you were starstruck by a surfer. When I was way younger Dad would take me to the contests at Jeffery’s Bay and I’d see all the guys but I was always too shy to go up and say hi. Parko and Mick were huge when I was 13. Machado and Kelly of course, I would freak out watching them and then it was such a weird transition moving from a little coastal town a bit outside of Port Elizabeth in South Africa, to Australia and meeting a couple of pro surfers like Hoyo and MR and to then be going on trips with them, it was such a bizarre transition. I never thought at any point that it was going to happen until it was happening.

…you felt pure surf stoke. The first time I went across a wave and felt that sensation of speed and truly being on a wave, I remember that like it was yesterday. It was right in front of my house and my dad would take me down there when I was eight or nine. He pushed me into this weird little double up that ran across the sand, it was probably only knee high and I remember that feeling of gliding. I still feel that sometimes on single fins and bigger boards. That shit still makes me so psyched.

…you turned your back on competition. I got a wildcard into the 6 Star at Margaret River four or five years ago. That’s the last time I remember trying in a contest. I actually got one or two waves backside and I tried, I surfed them to get a score. I remember doing nice drawn out roundhouse cutbacks and kind of vibing on the heat. Then I got a 3 and a 4 and I thought I would have got better scores than that. It didn’t make me feel very good. Trying, and getting smoked. So then I was like, “I don’t need people to judge what I do on a wave.”

Surfing World