Under The Influence: Luke Davis


All Photos: Jimmicane

Issue 6 2014Pink hair, red hair, gray and blue. Are Luke Davis’ ever-changing handles and hair a sign that he’s lost the plot? Or, like a chameleon, is he just blending in wherever he finds himself in life? If you’ve analyzed it that much, according to Luke, you’re overthinking it. The 21-year-old from San Clemente, California, is “exactly where [he] needs to be” in life right now. After a couple of years juggling his career with plenty of time in San Clemente, he’s decided to leave home behind. This year, he’s chasing every trip and ASP event he can in hopes of landing an elusive magazine cover, WQS victory, or both. And either would make for good Instagram fodder — especially with pink hair. —Zander Morton

LUKE: People who don’t know me think I’m going crazy. I laugh at that because they are forming an opinion based around my hair color, or a weird post or name change on Instagram. I’m realizing people take social media really seriously. And I understand it’s a form of marketing, but I’m just having fun with it. Like, people were tripping that I changed my name [on Instagram] to hategirl2, but that was only because my friend Palma [president of a brand called Mamadoux] is hateboy2, and I was hanging out with her, and just decided to change my name. That’s all there was to it.

I can tell people are thinking I’m rattled, or that I’m super bummed that my ex and I broke up, but I’m just fine. Seriously. You don’t have to worry about me. The last two years I was really attached to home and I didn’t even realize it. Now I’m psyched to travel nonstop. I have nothing to keep me in San Clemente and I can go anywhere in the world whenever I want. I just talked to Mikala [Jones] in Indo and he told me there is gonna be swell over there, so I booked a ticket to leave Oz and head over today. There is no way I’d be doing that if I still had a girlfriend. After I lost in the Newcastle contest I would have flown home, but instead I took a train to Bondi by myself. I’m exactly where I need to be in my life right now.

I want to do every ASP event I can get into, and then fill every gap chasing swells. In theory it sounds hectic, but this is the time in my life to do it. This year the contest schedule is toned down — after this Oz leg I don’t do another event for a few months so I have a huge break to do trips, chase good waves, and really work on my surfing, which is something I’m psyched on. This is my third year on the ‘QS and the first time we’ve had big enough gaps to do that.

I don’t have to do contests, but I want to do them. At this point I have very little I’m obligated to do, but I really love competing. This year I’ve done three events and haven’t done well in them. It’s the worst start I’ve ever had, and it’s discouraging, but I love doing events just as much as I love getting good waves so I’m gonna do both. I don’t feel like it would be satisfying to only do magazine trips. I’ve yet to win a ‘QS or get a major magazine cover, and both are still a dream, so I see no reason why I can’t chase both.