GOLDEN SLIDER | IVY THOMAS | CITIZENS OF THE SLIDE
Posted on October 23, 2016
C I T I Z E N S
O F T H E S L I D E
— Not So Ordinary Citizens Interview —
I V Y
T H O M A S
≫≫ GOLDEN SLIDER ≫≫
by Tracee Annetts – photography by Fran Miller
“The best surfer out there is the one having the most fun.”
So they say.
When Ivy Thomas and her Gold Coast posse including mate and fellow surfer/Photographer Fran Miller hit the waves together, it’s guaranteed to be non-stop smiles.
We’ve seen a lot of awe-inspiring ocean images of Ivy taken by the legendary Fran Miller and other talented photographers in the area and wanted to find out what’s keeping Gold Coast-based Ivy stoked in and out of the water.
HC : We’ve come to think of you as ‘Miller’s Mermaid Muse’. How did the two of you meet? You must spend some quality hours in the water together..
IT : Fran and I met the same way that I’ve met most of my best friends – in the surf. She was just someone who was surfing Snapper every afternoon, same as me! It wasn’t until she was shooting with Chelsea Williams one afternoon that I realised she was a photographer, she got a few photos of me and then we organised to do a proper shoot. Now it’s almost rare for us to be apart! We’re always roadtripping and are always laughing the entire time, she’s like a big sister to me, which is pretty cool.
HC : How did you come to be part of the @deadkooks family of team riders?
IT : Eden is one of the kindest, most generous people I have ever met. I approached him about two years ago as a stoked-out fifteen year old who had just discovered the joy of longboarding, and he helped me out from the very beginning with a good price and an amazing board which really boosted my ability.
Since then, I have been fortunate that he continued to believe in me and I started receiving many amazing boards from him that have changed and improved my surfing like crazy… I try to promote him and help him out as much as I can in return.
HC : What is your favourite sled of the moment?
IT : My most recent log from Eden is definitely my go-to, which is a 9’5 replica of a board he made for Kassia Meador.
I surf it every single day – unless there is a bit more swell around. In that case, I have a 6’7 Hellhound single fin that is so much fun!
HC : What is it about surfing for you; describe the feelings it cultivates within and when the addiction took hold?
IT : The thing that I find the most amazing about surfing is that a wave is something that cannot be controlled or contained. Surfing is gliding over a surface of water, which we would normally sink into if it wasn’t for a moving body of water which has built up from the middle of the ocean.
And not only that, but this seemingly simple thing constantly brings me the most euphoric feeling I have ever experienced and has allowed me to encounter some of the best humans I have ever met.
I was your typical, stubborn 6 year old who would fight and negotiate with her dad about how many waves I would/wouldn’t catch. Eventually, my parents gave up and put me into nippers at Greenmount. I think they used it as their secret weapon to get me back into surfing – which worked! I began standing up on the nipper boards in free time, and I’ve been addicted ever since.
HC : We’ve been fans of your beautiful Instagram gallery for some time now. Has Social Media played a part in creating a livelihood, building a community, meeting people and/or sharing the love of, and helping to preserve the Ocean and Beaches?
IT : As much as I hate saying it, I seriously doubt that I would have half the amount of opportunities that I have now if it wasn’t for social media.
Instagram in particular has allowed me to become easily accessible and to come in contact with amazing brands and incredible people from all over the world. It is allowing me to pursue my dream of making a living out of something that I enjoy more than anything else in the world – surfing.
As my following becomes larger and broader, I would love to use this as a means of promoting and supporting global issues. Particularly issues such as shark culling and the protection of our beautiful beaches and marine life, which bring so much joy to everyone who has the opportunity to be a part of it.
HC : If you could go anywhere on the planet where would you go..
IT : Due to the fact that I am only a mere month away from finishing high school, travelling is 100% on the cards!
I want to travel to secluded waves and rich culture, such as Sri Lanka and Costa Rica.
As well as California, Mexico, New Zealand and maybe even a sneaky road trip around the coast of Australia!
How good are the Edit’s by @rivercovey?! Original taken by Roisin Carolan on Fran’s camera.
HC : Where are your favourite Surf spots?
IT : The best part about the Gold Coast is that there’s almost always a wave. I wake up at 5am every morning and take my board down to Snapper, and there’s nearly always a super fun wave breaking through to Greenmount! If the surf is tiny and I’m really desperate, I’ll head down to Cabarita or Pottsville, and to Fingal when its onshore in Coolangatta.
Apart from that, two of my favourite places to surf are Noosa and Byron. I absolutely love Tea Tree Bay, and Wategos usually has a really fun wave away from the crowds at The Pass.
HC : It looks like the Salty Life agrees with you – you epitomise a healthy, happy human! What favorite daily rituals inspire you with keeping your mind and body balanced?
IT : I am a huge believer in balance. Balancing the good with the not-so-good, balancing school and study with things that make me happy.
I feel that I have a more positive and productive day – at school especially – if I wake up early and head down to the beach to watch the sunrise. Even if there are no waves, it’s nice to go down and get some fresh air and maybe a sneaky coffee before I head off on my less-fun daily rituals.
Surfing or catching up with friends in the afternoons after school also allows me to clear my head so I can study more later that night.
Essentially, as long as I am happy, eating well and allowing myself to still live a little in these last days of my schooling life, I get by just fine. Coffee also helps a lot too! Hahaha
HC : What are you grateful for? What else makes you happy out of the water?
I am grateful for a million and one things in my life. Grateful to have an amazing family, beautiful friends, a good education, a healthy and happy lifestyle and to have been born into an incredibly beautiful country that holds endless opportunities for myself.
But more than anything, I am so grateful that fate took over, getting my dad a job on the Gold Coast when I was three years old. My mum, dad and I moved down from Brisbane and didn’t look back, living the life we were supposed to live.
If dad hadn’t got that job, I would be a completely different person, and wouldn’t have surfing in my life – something that I am endlessly grateful for.
HC : Name one person and a particular surfboard that you believe has most influenced your surfing style.
IT : It would be almost impossible for me to name one person who has influenced my surfing in particular, however I mainly draw my inspiration from female surfers in the industry.
Social media allows me to easily access the beautiful surfing of many incredible women from all around the world, such as Kassia Meador, Leah Dawson and Erin Ashley to name a few.
They all resemble the 1960’s style of surfing that I follow, with traditional noseriders, single fins and a whole lot of style.
However, one person who has had a massive impact on my surfing over the past year is Jordan Spee. Ever since we’ve been dating, sharing waves with him on a regular basis has started pushing my own surfing.
Seeing his incredible ability in the flesh and trying to analyse it and take some of it into my surfing. I can feel that my style has improved because of it!
His talent for his age and the respect he is already receiving from other surfers is undeniably incredible and he’s seriously going places… and hopefully pulling me along with him! Hahaha!
I aspire to one day be able to bring something to the world of longboarding, and inspire younger surfers just like these humans have inspired me.
HC : What would you consider to be your favourite surfing era?
IT : The surfing era that I would have to say I relate to the most would be the 1960’s. The boards and the style of that time really accentuate what surfing means to me – having fun.
However, I also believe that every era of surfing holds it’s own individual characteristics, and that as long as the surfing is being enjoyed and not taken too seriously, then it’s memorable.
HC : Where do you go for a killer cup of coffee or is juice more your style?
IT : I’m definitely a coffee fan… I’m a bit obsessed actually! In Coolangatta, my favourite coffee would be either Little Mahli or Black Sheep, but one place that makes an insane coffee and amazing food is Glass Coffee House and Surf Gallery. The vibe is incredible and so are the people! It’s my go-to whenever I’m on the Sunshine Coast.
HC : I’m sure you were as saddened as us, to hear that Foam Symmetry have released its final edition. Was this a mag you coveted, and are you a fan of the printed format compared with online?
IT : Foam was definitely one of my favourite magazines! I’m a huge fan of printed format, especially the amazingly textured paper and incredibly talented contributors that made Justin’s magazine stand out for years. There’s nothing like being able to hold a magazine full of beautiful surfing, and it will be missed!
However, online magazines have their positives, like easily being able to look up videos and photos on the internet for inspiration.
HC : What else is on the horizon for Ivy?
IT : For the next year or so, I’m really going to knuckle down and focus on my surfing, travelling and making amazing memories while I’m young, and hopefully sharing this with a main sponsor in the meantime!
After that, I will pursue by dream of studying Equine Science at the University of Queensland so that I can one day become an Equine Physiotherapist and be able to work with my favourite animals for a living!
I would love to own a property in the Byron Bay Hinterland and work from home, running my own business, consulting and rehabilitating horses on the property.
Keep up with Ivy Thomas & Fran Miller on Instagram here
↱ @Ivythomas_ | @Fran90210
All Photography by Fran Miller : web ↰
Profile of Ivy at top of page
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