Surfer (magazine)

Surfer is an American monthly surfing culture magazine, published by American Media.

Surfer Magazine Cover April, 2011
EditorTodd Prodanovich
CategoriesSports magazine
Total circulation
(December 2011)
FounderJohn Severson
Year founded1962 (1962)
CompanyAmerican Media
CountryUnited States
Based inCarlsbad, California, U.S.


The magazine was founded by John Severson[2] (1933–2017) in 1962[3] as a program to accompany his yearly surf films. Severson was motivated by a desire to counter what he saw as negative effects of the popularization of surfing by the 1959 film Gidget - as he would recall later: "Surfers hated those Hollywood surf films, and I could see that Surfer could create a truer image of the sport."[3] Severson's photography, art and sense of humor set the pace for the future of Surfer, which quickly grew to be a reflection of the sport and culture, as well as a sounding board for surfers and environmental activists. Its editor-in-chief is Todd Prodanovich; the photo editor is Grant Ellis.

The magazine was started as quarterly and then, became bi-monthly.[2] By the early 1970s, when Severson sold Surfer for an undisclosed amount, it had about 100,000 readers.[3]


  1. "eCirc for Consumer Magazines". Audit Bureau of Circulations. Retrieved April 28, 2012.
  2. Magazine Publishing. Clinton Gilkie. p. 16. GGKEY:84J4SXB4BU6. Retrieved 30 November 2015.
  3. Goldstein, Richard (2017-05-29). "John Severson, trailblazer of surf media and culture, dies". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2017-05-30.
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