Surfing lost one of its most talented photographers at the weekend. LeRoy Grannis passed away at the age of 93. He is renowned for capturing the Golden Age of the 60s and 70s at a time when surfing soared in popularity in California.
With a darkroom in his garage, Grannis began work with the Hermosa Beach surfers at a ripe age of 42. He had been surfing since a young age, but only found photography later in life. He captured the quintessential images which are now synonymous with the Beach Boys and helped to shape the iconic Californian beach lifestyle culture through the lens.
While there are many photographers who captured this era, Art Brewer, Ron Stoner to name a few, Grannis was seen “the godfather of surf photography” as The New York Times commented. You will have seen his work at exhibitions, in magazines and through documtentaies all over the globe.
Taschen Books published the best of his work, (reviewed by Drift some years ago), “Leroy Grannis – Surf Photography of the 1960s and 1970s” which was quite simply, a masterpiece.
He will always remain in the hearts and minds of surfers, photographers and the people he captured through his lens.