Imagine any surfer you want. Now, imagine an artist. Did the same name come to mind? Chances are, it did. With legends George Greenough and Rick Griffin, to modern day Dave Rastovich, Ozzy Wrong and Thomas Campbell, it seems as if surfing stands out among physical activities with such a strong culture of creation woven into the activity itself. Whether it involves shaping, filmmaking, making music, or drawing cartoons depicting classic lineup situations, creativity exists at the heart of surf culture.
Let’s start with the fact that many surfers are creatives. Take JJ Wessels, a modern-day longboarder and artist, for example, who says working with his hands is an integral part of his existence. Whether he’s surfing or collaborating with surf brands, creativity allows him “cultural freedom.” This is the case for most surfers: creative energy is only increased by dipping into the ocean.