Servais, Tom


Versatile surf photographer from Dana Point, California; longtime senior staff photographer for Surfer magazine; best known for his work in the South Pacific, including five Surfer magazine cover shots from Fiji's Tavarua Island in the 1990s.

Servais was born (1953) in Miami, Florida, began surfing at 13, and started taking surf photos in 1977, four years after moving to San Clemente, California. Aside from enrolling in junior college photography classes, Servais is primarily self-taught. In 1979, two years after being hired at Surfer as a darkroom assistant, he was given a masthead position, and while he didn't become a marquee name like Art Brewer, Jeff Divine, Aaron Chang, or Jeff Hornbaker, he steadily worked his way to the top rank, and by the mid-'90s was among the sport's busiest, best-traveled, and most-published lensmen.

Servais's work has appeared in Outside, Men's Journal, and Sports Illustrated; his best-known shot, of Florida surfer Cory Lopez in the tube at Tahiti's Teahupoo, was used on the cover of The Perfect Day: 40 Years of Surfer Magazine, published in 2001. Masters of Surf Photography: Tom Servais, an oversize coffee table book of Servais work through the decades, was published by The Surfer's Journal in 2005. He'sĀ also contributed to a number of other illustrated surfing books, including Surfing: The UltimateĀ Pleasure (1984), SurfRiders (1997), Girl in the Curl (2000), and The History of Surfing (2010).