John Callahan is a photographer who has appeared in virtually every Stormrider publication we have made, alongside just about every mainstream surf magazine ever, thanks to his epic work heading to far-flung destinations with SurfEXPLORE.
After growing up in Hawaii, where he was a classmate of Barack Obama at Punahou School, John graduated from UCLA in California and began shooting around the Los Angeles area with local pros like Allen Sarlo and Jamie Brisick, receiving film and encouragement from Larry “Flame” Moore, the perfectionist photo editor at SURFING Magazine. Moving back to Hawaii, John frequented the North and South Shores, working with local pros like Pocho Ahina, Ross Williams and Kirby Fukunaga to supply US and Japanese magazines with fresh content.
After a few photo trips to Mexico and Costa Rica, John planned a trip to The Philippines, a relatively unknown surf destination at the time. John, Evan Slater and Taylor Knox had no idea they were about to undertake what SURFER Magazine voted one of the “10 Best Surf Trips of All Time”, consisting of weeks of perfect surf and 40 rolls of mind-boggling images.
John moved from Hawaii to Singapore and established himself as one of the top surfing photographers worldwide, leading to publication in the US, Japan, Australia, South Africa, Europe and Brasil. John consistently showed unique perspectives on his subjects, while supplying a spectrum of aesthetic and technically superlative imagery from hard action to subtle scenic material that editors loved, as John’s images easily fit together into a coherent layout.