Stab Magazine | Billabong's Child Of The Bush Collection is Flawless

Playing (Mostly) Exclusively On Stab Premium: Facing Monsters, Featuring Kerby & Cortney Brown


Billabong’s Child Of The Bush Collection is Flawless

Roots, bush, beautiful boardshorts.

style // Nov 18, 2019
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Otis Carey is one of the few paid to surf who’s got a genuine second string to his bow. 

There’s plenty of surfers in shitty bands, producing shitty art (often by design and hey, we’re all for creative outlets, shitty or not), but Otis’s art practice is absolutely significant for a number of reasons. First up, his modern take on the techniques of his Indigenous ancestors is genuinely beautiful. And secondly, because he’s been producing sell out shows for a number of years now, prompting real entities in the art world to yank their chequebooks from their holsters. Unsurprisingly, when his marquee sponsor lets Otis put his brush to a range, it comes out rather well.

stab mag billabong children bush

Otis Carey: artist, surfer, and proud Gumbayangirr man.

The Child of the Bush collection is the second range Otis has collaborated with ‘Bong on, and the thoughtfulness of the whole process is a rarity. These things often seem so rushed out and concept-less, but everything from the meticulously detailed range to the film (narrated by Otis’ uncle) reeks of thought and effort. It’s a fitting tribute from a quintessentially Australian company to the original custodians of their adopted land. As an added touch, a portion of the proceeds from the range will be donated to the Kulai Preschool Aboriginal Corporation, the school in Coffs Harbour of which Otis is an alumni.

stab mag billabong children bush 4

Clean, simple, effective.

As for the range, there’s not a bum note to be found. The button ups are loose and breezy, striped by Otis, but in a wearable, non-garish fashion. The three pack of socks are just perfect, a mix of dot paintings and an old Billy’s font that never should’ve been discarded. The hats are tasteful and practical for keeping melanoma at bay, and like the rest of the range adorned with the emblematic diamond logo that sat on Occy’s beak for some of his most memorable performances. And then there’s the jewel in the range, Otis’s signature DBah trunks featuring just the most wonderful appropriation of the black, yellow and red flag we’ve come across.

Ultimately, hats off to Billabong for backing Otis and allowing him to cross-pollinate his crafts. If we’re being honest, the Child of the Bush range isn’t likely to top Bong’s best sellers list for the year, but that’s not the point. Backing a talented Indigenous artist and surfer is one of the few examples of large companies investing in genuine culture, and whether his trunks fly off the shelves or not (and hey, they’re pretty damned good, so they just might) Australian culture, surfing and otherwise, benefits greatly from having characters like Otis flowing freely within.

stab mag billabong children bush 3

Shop the entire Child of the Bush range here.


Comments are a Stab Premium feature. Gotta join to talk shop.

Already a member? Sign In

Want to join? Sign Up


Most Recent

‘Desensitised’ Chronicles Kipp Caddy’s Journey To The ‘Wave Of A Lifetime’ In Mind Melting 8K 

“I think crew get a bit too beaten up on the whole tow vs paddle…

Jul 24, 2024

Long Read: How Surfing The World’s Most Dangerous Slabs Saved Kerby Brown’s Life

"There is big wave surfing, and then there is what Kerby does." - Kai Lenny

Jul 24, 2024

Who Nathan Florence Is Betting On For Olympic Gold

Become a better better with our 2023 SSOTY.

Jul 23, 2024

Kai McKenzie Attacked By Shark In Port Macquarie

The young freesurfer sustained a life-threatening injury to his right leg.

Jul 23, 2024

Op-ed: PSA From The Photog World — Know Your Fucking Limits

Nate Lawrence, Chris Bryan, Dom Mosqueira, Morgan Maassen and more chime in on the recent…

Jul 22, 2024

Unlocked: Oxbow’s Children Of Teahupo’o

10,000 miles from Paris, here's a portrait of surfing's 'Olympic Village.'

Jul 22, 2024

Dimitri Poulos Is Reinvigorated After Losing His Taurine-Caffeine Sponsor

Now the 21-year-old ‘comp guy’ from Ventura threatens a Dane-esque pivot to freesurfing.

Jul 22, 2024

Empty Set: When Is It Ok To Bail Your Board?

The Florences and Mark Healey dissect the razor-thin line between cowardice and common sense

Jul 21, 2024

A (Non) Objective Look At The Best Backside Barrel Riders In History

Who has the best pigdog in the pen?

Jul 21, 2024

The Stab Interview With Jordy Smith

"If I won a gold medal, yeah, I'd probably kick out. I'd have one up…

Jul 19, 2024

How Does A Board Brand Licensing Model Work?

The Lost Stub 3.0 Joyride.

Jul 18, 2024

Challenger Series Losers Win Consolation Prizes At Namibian Desert Casino

"Some crew were saying it was a 3/10, but for me, it was 10/10. The…

Jul 18, 2024

How Teahupo’o Slungshot A Surf-Mat Toting Photographer Into An Induced Coma

Byron Mcloughlin tells the tale of his secondary drowning.

Jul 18, 2024

On Making A Living As A Gen-Z Surf Photographer And Surviving Hyper-Rare Cancer

This 21-year-old protégé of Ryan Miller and Morgan Maassen is back and #opentowork.

Jul 17, 2024

In This Instalment Of MTV Cribs… Ethan Ewing

A character-revealing profile on the Olympian and World #5 + a complimentary Fiji preview

Jul 17, 2024

Jake Marshall Made It To 4th In The World And His Best Friend Is To Blame

From combatants, to housemates, to secretive CT surfer/shaper.

Jul 16, 2024

2024’s Electric Acid Surfboard Test Star Is…

Massively overqualified. 

Jul 16, 2024

Kelly Slater, Sierra Kerr + Erin Brooks Awarded Role Of Cats In Penultimate CT Pigeon Parade

A deadly lineup of wildcards just got invited to Fiji, the last event to determine…

Jul 16, 2024