Leucadia artist doesn’t force his craft


Over the past two decades, Andy Davis’ soulful surf art has graced everything from canvases to T-shirts.

Davis, who lives in Leucadia, attributes his career to a simple idea: don’t force it.

He cited, as an example, how he fixated on becoming a pro surfer in his teens. He ended up putting a lot of pressure on himself in the water, killing any good vibes.

“If I tried too hard, I would fumble,” Davis said. “Things would come easy when I relaxed.”

The same applied to the classroom. When he put too much pressure on himself to pay attention, lessons became needlessly difficult.

He would often doodle in school, retreating to his own little world full of colorful characters that were influenced by the Looney Tunes cartoons he watched as a kid. Little did he know at the time, he was developing a distinct style that would pave the way for a future career.

“As far back as I can remember, I was doodling,” Davis said. “I would document what was happening around me in my own little way. I was always daydreaming.”

He described his style as “simple, dreamy and with bold lines.”

Eventually, he gave up on professional surfing and pivoted to surf apparel. He was the driving force behind surf brands like Byrd and Free, which featured his art.

All the while, he’s exhibited his paintings around the world, from Japan to Australia. One of his next big projects: serving as the featured artist of the 2015 San Diego Surf Film Festival, running from May 20-23.

“I’m just taking opportunities as they come and staying in the moment,” Davis said. “That’s always been key for me.”

To learn more or check out additional artwork, visit