Early surfing images celebrate the 50th anniversary of the World Surfing Championships in Torquay which were won by Rolf Aurness and Sharron Weber.

John Witzig has been following surfing with his camera since the 1960s. He contributed his first piece to Surfing World in 1963. John was editor of Surf International before co-founding Tracks magazine in 1970. He has published a number of books with images of his surfing journey.

He has described how the early 1960s photographers were just amateurs who came to photography through surfing. John started by borrowing a camera and lens, then some of them began to share the equipment before John graduated to his own camera.

John found photographing surfing easy, “You stood on the beach, used your experience int eh water to anticipate what a (hopefully good) surfer was about to do next and pressed a button. If you knew the surfers and how they rode waves it was easier.” (https://www.portrait.gov.au/magazines/27/off-the-wall)

In the early days of Australian surfing, the recording of these adventures was not considered as significant as it is today. Documenting the history of surfing through the camera lens has provided an insight into the surfing culture that was not looked at favourably at the time. Now it has developed into a multi-millon dollar business.

Watch out for that gallery coming up and the surfing images from those titles.