Severson, John

Seminal surf world writer, editor, publisher, photographer, filmmaker, and artist from San Clemente, California; best known as the founder in 1960 of Surfer magazine. "Before John Severson," surf writer Drew Kampion wrote in 1999, "there was no 'surf media,' no 'surf industry' and no 'surf culture'—at least not in the way we understand it today."

Severson was born (1933) in Los Angeles, the son of a gas station owner, raised in North Fair Oaks and Pasadena, and began surfing at age 13, after...