Australian Exploration with Jemma Scott

As the Atlas Label team readied for their yearly pilgrimage to Australian waters, they would not fathom the wonder of what was to come. This adventure saw them compete in the Noosa Festival of Surfing, meet friends for life, road-trip to the South Coast and surf with the best in Byron Bay. But most importantly, it saw them find paradise in a small coastal town.

What is it that draws us to these places? These small towns where the local pie shop and mellow right hander are all that are beautifully on offer. Apart from the lush bushland & ascending headlands that gape in grandeur when you perch yourself on the edge of their rocky outcrop, the small community feel & cruisey vibes of this town are what keep drawing us back. We headed three hours South in dribs & drabs post Noosa surf festival. 

A quick pit stop with the roos.

Justine makes her way along the rocks.

Millie would cook up five-star meals out of the back of her van.

Within days we had a solid crew of wave dancers & water hooligans. Weeks like these, when parking up at the point carpark, cooking up meals out the back of your van, having quality chats with the locals & surfing at least six hours a day was all that we lived for. The cars wouldn’t move until dusk came and the sun settled over the headland. Waves still rolling in, and the moon rising above the sea.

The first week the Atlas crew rented a little house up on the hill which was laden with beautiful books & tales of the sea, vintage surf posters & fresh aloe vera pot plants to soothe the sunburn. The owners really had it going on in that place. After a solid day spent down at the point, it was pretty great to be able to go back to the house and continue feeding our stoke by watching old surf flicks haha. Endless froth.

Cristina wears her Long-Jane for a shoot session.

Albe and feather.

There were a few quirky characters that really made this little trip down the coast special for me. Albe Falzon and Ric Mandu. Albe… with so many adventures & creative projects explored in a lifetime, including the making of one of the most iconic surf films Morning of the Earth, it was pretty awesome to chat about life behind the lens. From his time in Tibet shooting a pilgrim festival in the Wesak Valley to quantum physics and spirituality.

The always happy Ric.

And then Ric. Ric can be described as an affiable old sea dog with the generosity of an unemployed philanthropist. Living in a community out in the bushland & collecting old surboards, Ric does things a little differently, and we couldn’t love him more for it. Always there with a smile & quality chat, he made my day when he let me borrow his 9’6 Donald Takayama longboard. The gift of a board at a break like that is the gift of over one hundred waves; and that is pure joy.

Justine and Ali with pre-surf smiles.

There’s one thing that brings all of us together- all these people from different scopes of the globe, young and old, wise and eager- a divine love for the ocean. The people that you meet out in the surf are generally the best kinds of people. Not being biased or anything, but seriously.

A couple of the crew hit the back beaches for some early-morning waves.


Images and words by Jemma Scott