Surf culture includes the people, language, fashion and life surrounding the art and sport of surfing.surf_1

Many designers, photographers, and all creatures of the creative world have really taken a liking to the whole surf culture, look, and concept. The laid-back look, the whole idea of just taking a more relaxed view on life in every aspect has truly taken over the design industry, in particular fashion, in a lot of ways.

The whole surf culture has been rapidly evolving over the past few decades, but the whole concept has really taken over the industry in the past few years. As we see on the runways, and in collections from young designers to commercial stores, this trend is moving forward with this laid-back look. This trend is definitely not reserved for just beach towns and Billabong and Roxy lovers, but also in the major fashion capitals of New York, London, Milan, Paris, and more.

Rosario Bancoraglio's Waves Dress

Rosario Bancoraglio’s Waves Dress


The beach style and surfer chick look took the globe by storm. Suddenly everyone was wearing board shorts not only surfers or beach folk. In 1970 two Australian surfers by the name of Alan Green and John Law redefined board shorts, and made them fashionable finally. They designed a short that was actually made specifically for surfing in every aspect, from the material used, the waist band, the length, button placement, lining, etc. These board shorts were exactly what surfers where looking for! These shorts became the dominant shorts worn by surfers. These guys created a company, it’s called Quicksilver. Every surfer who bought a pair said the same thing: “they are the most comfortable shorts for surfing they had ever worn”, and from that day forward the word spread like wild fire. Now Board Shorts are the most worn clothing by surfers and the popularity continues to grow!

surf_4 Surf imagery is hugely popular worldwide, whether you surf or not. The power surf imagery had on people was becoming more and more obvious through time. A surfer and photographer named John Severson started a collection of surf imagery, and collated it as a ‘book of photos’, which he called “The Surfer”. Slowly his garage-built book developed into a full-scale magazine called “Surfer”. This would be the first of many surf publications throughout the world.

surf_5 Surf art and surf publications throughout the different mediums, have moved with the times in-line with contemporary trends and styles, graphically or technologically. Styles and popularity of typography and illustration particularly have influenced surf art, both in print and in multimedia. We are presented with all these cool contemporary images of people surfing… the images adorned with fresh and exciting typography, and all kinds of illustration. And naturally we are drawn to it.



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