Pro-in-the-making eschews dazzling career as dancing bear for…art! Like the olden days!
Little Billy Bain. Sweet Billy Bain. Some moons ago, the son of the pro surfing great Robbie Bain, was the finalist in a find-the-great-new-talent contest my magazine ran. He didn’t win, that honour went to the unknown jibber from Cabarita called Chippa Wilson, but he came very close.
I knew a little of Billy’s art, at the time it was quite naive and derivative, but like all things, the kid found his heart’s true desire, his passion, and began to grow it, develop it. Take criticism, move in unexpected directions, live it.
In this, the first of a three-part series by the wetsuit company O’Neill about its lesser-known but nevertheless interesting surfers, Billy’s pivot from surf to art is unpacked, as they say.
“I’m an artist and that’s what I do,” says Billy. “My purpose is to make cool shit.”
“These O’Riginals films are about examining the influence surfing has had on these guys’ lives, how it affects the choices they make and the way they want to live and,ultimately who they want to be,” says series director, Adam Blakey who, let’s not forget, was responsible for that attractive short film with Mason Ho and Mick Fanning we ran a couple of days back.