Jackson Lewin

Great Outdoors – trade as a lifestyle choice?

It isn’t often that you hear an apprentice say their motivation for picking up the tools was for any reason other than that being a ‘tradie’ ran in the family.

But Jackson Lewin isn’t your average apprentice.


For Jackson, the decision to pick up the tools was as much informed by his social circle and his love of being outdoors as it was for the trade itself being a passion of his.

A lot of my good friends are carpenters and I have always frothed on the lifestyle

Being outdoors and also being able to surf every arvo after work have always been important (necessary) for me really.

Originally from Brunswick Heads, north of Byron Bay, Jackson spent many very good years in the ocean, surfing and bodyboarding, seeing him have great success on a bodyboard in his early years (clocking up some major competitive results) and these days making sure to get away to Indo for the odd surf trip, also finding the less-crowded moments in the water at Bondi from time to time.

His transition from the bodyboard to now riding a surfboard (most of the time) is an interesting discussion that is often under-reported.

You know, when you ride a bodyboard for so long you really get to know the wave much better than if you were on a surfboard all of your life

I reckon it would be so hard to go and get a surfboard and just go surfing for the first time in your life. Knowing the ocean, how a wave breaks up close, the rips and all that kind of shit, you just get the hang of the ocean itself much better to begin with, and all that

I had a bit of success in my competitive career along the way and met a lot of good people and had a bunch of great times, so I only have great memories of it all

This need for the salty brine hasn’t diminished now that he is forced to deal with the crowded line-ups in Sydney. The crowded roads and the pace of activity in the state’s capital is another thing though; Jackson’s transition to dealing with the pace of the city has had its challenges.

At first, the people and the traffic and all that was a bit difficult to deal with to be honest. I am pretty chilled, pretty cruisy guy so it is hard to change that quickly

The costs of his laid-back approach to life in the city have been financial too…

You should see the number of fines I have accumulated since living here! Parking fines, speeding fines. Not that I am a bad driver, or that I go too hard, it is just that I am kinda cruising and forgetting that I am in a city with all these rules and people catching you out when you break them

But it isn’t all bad. Jackson is stoked with his job and the people he gets to work with each day, and when he came to live in Bondi he already had a number of friends in the area to connect with.

I have a lot of friends down here, so while I miss my friends back home, it has been easier to live here having friends already in the area… and I love working with all these guys at Virtue Projects. We have such a great time at work (and after work too sometimes) so that makes living here in Sydney a bit easier too

As long as we keep Jackson on the outside jobs breathing the fresh air, we are sure he will continue to be a great member of the team.