Style Rider aims to document the world’s most stylish motorcycle riders, be they riders of classic, custom or cafe racer steeds. Focused on the intersection of motorcycle culture with individual style, here we speak to photographer Jason Lau about riding retro-styled bikes.
Name: Jason Lau
Residence: Melbourne, Australia
Today’s ride: Harley Davidson Iron 883. Its looks were what initially got me interested in retro bikes. I bought this bike to replace my stolen 2009 Triumph Bonneville SE. While the Bonneville handled better, when it was taken, I felt it was time for the Harley. I love the idea of a pocket cruiser, the burble of the engine and the many customising options available.
Describe your style: I wear a lot of black, with my custom Oris leather jacket a regular staple of my wardrobe. I find that you can wear a leather jacket almost every day and no one thinks it strange. It gives any outfit a more definite statement.
Favourite items: Currently enjoying my Omega Speedmaster watch. It’s the perfect accessory to my passion for riding. As far as watch design goes, it does not get more iconic, and it is a piece of history that will remain relevant through the ages.
Next purchase: West Eagle Rabbit bars for the Harley. They’re a wider version of rabbit bars, similar to mini apes but with a greater pullback angle. I kind of dig the streamline look and it gives the bike a fun vintage appearance.
Style icon/inspiration: I love researching the Japanese biker scene. It’s a blend of Americana and their own style. The mash-up aspect is enjoyable to play with.
Best local ride: Brunswick to Kinglake and then through the Toolangi State forest to Healesville is my go-to ‘local’ ride. There’s not much in the city, so you have to travel before the riding gets interesting. This ride has a great variety of open country roads, tight twisting corners and a good pie shop somewhere in the middle.
Best distance ride: North-West Tasmania. The combination of epic roads, serene but spectacular landscapes and lack of traffic make it one of my favourite rides. I’ve heard it rains a lot around there, but we were lucky enough to have plenty of sunshine. On the ride to Queenstown, Tasmania, I just popped my bike in neutral and rolled the last two kilometres down a winding hill into town. It is riding heaven.
Tip for stylish motorcycle riding: Enjoy the evolution of style. None of this is your ‘true’ identity. Have fun with it. Get inspired and if it fits and it makes you feel confident, wear it!
Next motorcycle trip: I’d love to ride up the west coast of the USA exploring the deserts and mountains. I love the vision of the lone diners, abandoned fuel stations and other run-down joints.
Why do you like riding? I didn’t expect to like riding. I got my license so I could ride scooters overseas if I wanted to. Then slowly, in line with my obsession with motorcycle aesthetics, the thrill of the ride took over completely. I love owning something that represents the beauty of movement, the joy of acceleration, and the learning the skills needed to carve through twisty roads.
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