In the summer of 1960, an artist, surfer, and teacher by the name of John Severson distributed the very first issue of “The Surfer” to an auditorium full of young Southern Californians. It was a photo-heavy 36-page black-and-white booklet meant to serve as a promo piece to accompany the film. It was a DIY endeavor in the purest sense. Severson took all the photos while traveling through California and Hawaii the previous winter, sketched all the accompanying doodles and drawings, and penned every word printed therein (oh yeah, the printing, he also managed that, too).

At the time, the budding filmmaker was simply making an easy giveaway to stoke out his movie-attending fans. He had no idea that his homemade zine would become this here title that would evolve over 60 years and one day be called “The Bible of the Sport”. He had no idea that he would go on to create a brand that would document every major moment in the sport of surfing from 1960 onwards and serve as a rotating gallery for the best surf photography in the world.

Six decades after Severson first broke ground in surf media, legendary photographer Grant Ellis (who served as SURFER’s photo editor for nearly 20 years) decided it was time to celebrate this title’s storied past in print and partnered up with Rizzoli Publications to produce a coffee table book that serves as a curated anthology of the sport’s greatest moments through the eyes of SURFER’s print offering.

Photo Credit: Grant Ellis

With a much larger footprint than Severson’s original pamphlet, “Surfer Magazine:  1960-2020” is packed cover to cover with snapshots from the most memorable travelogues, interviews, photo features and history-defining Page Ones that appeared in the title’s 400-plus issues. From wave discoveries to new board design innovations and the building of world champions, the era-defining moments that helped make SURFER such a success in the past come to life again in this hardback stunner.

The book is carved up by decade, with essays from legendary writers like William Finnegan, Steve Hawk, Matt Warshaw and more on the making of the mag. If you grew up buying SURFER issues off the newsstands and taping full-bleeds up on your wall as a kid–or if you’re any level of ocean-going enthusiast–this book will take you on an epic ride down memory lane.

surfer magazine book

Photo Credit: Grant Ellis

In 2020, SURFER’s print production was shuttered by its owners indefinitely, with its future still totally TBD (yeah, it’s been a weird two years). But for Ellis–who saw the unifying power of hold-in-your-hand surf media when he was growing up in South Africa and during his time as photo editor–rather than lamenting the folding of the title’s print, he commemorates it in a way that makes us (you, me, the person next you in the lineup this morning) feel like we were all apart of documenting surf culture. Which is all that Severson wanted to do when he started this whole shebang long ago.

“This book is not about the highlights of surfing’s past, but more a dive into the feelings and experiences you may have had as kid—perhaps, like I once was, growing up in a small town that felt very, very far away from it all, looking through the pages of the magazine and immersing yourself into a new, truly more amazing world,” writes Ellis in the book’s opening pages. “Hopefully some of those forgotten memories will be restored. Hopefully it’ll bring you that same joy it reproduced and reinvigorated in us all, every single issue, every single one of its sixty years.”

surfer book

Photo Credit: Ryan Craig

Do yourself a favor and get your hands on a copy now. Click here to purchase and find out more about the book.

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Photo Credit: RIZZOLI

Purchase your copy here

https://www.surfer.com/features/buy-now-surfer-magazine-coffee-table-book-celebrates-six-decades-of-the-bible-of-the-sport/

By admin

SurfinDaddy has been hanging around the periphery of the web since 2001 – but the dawn of 2021 sees us ready to jump into the fray. No longer content to be an outsider (but loving that our readership will be those who love the outdoors) we’re poised to become your online resource for all things related to boardsports.