Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Art of Surf Photography: John Severson

Big Surf Event

"In this crowded world, the surfer can still seek and find the perfect day, the perfect wave, and be alone with the surf and his thoughts...."
- John Severson

I received my first subscription to Surfer Magazine when I was 18 years old. It was an event when it arrived in my mail and I'd turn to those gorgeous full page spreads of colorful reefbreaks in far off distant lands. My college dormmates and I would argue over who had the sickest shreds and the gnarliest wipeouts; checking out the boards and racks as if we were speaking of girlfriends. In a way we were because we loved surfing.

Severson's vision created that publication and his legacy lives on through millions of people that wait patiently, each month, by their mailboxes.


The Curl. 1962.

Sunset Beach Drop. 1961.

Standing Island Pullout. 1959.

Rincon Cruise. 1960.

Mickey Munoz "The Quasimodo". 1959.

Kemp Aaberg at Rincon. 1959.

Hang Ten. 1959.

Hammond's Reef. 1964.

Greg Noll. Pipeline. 1964. "Da Bull".

Banzai Beach. 1959.


Wild Angels.


Soup Arch.

Golden Age.

His bestselling book, Surf Fever, is out of print. A few copies may still be available for sale on his website.

Here's a short preview of his legendary surf movie, Pacific Vibrations:

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