Clark Little grew up with saltwater and photography in his veins, once his family arrived on the North Shore via California when his dad got a job as a photography teacher at Punahou, the accliaimed private school in Honolulu. Both parents worked, so they'd drop Clark and his brother Brock off at Haleiwa Surf Center where Hawaiian legends like Marvin Foster and Terry Ahue nurtured their oceanic talents. "They prepared us to surf, swim... everything under the sun," Clark says. "The locals really took care of me and Brock. We'd hang out at the beach all day because my parents were both professors who were gone a lot."

While Brock went on to enjoy a storied and well-documented big-wave career, Clark never managed to do well in contests -- a 9th in the Triple Crown was his best result -- and by his mid-twenties found many of the marquee North Shore spots losing their luster. So Clark started surfing the Waimea shorebreak, on a bet. "I hung out at the lifeguard tower and would play, bodysurf and goof off," Little remembers. "I bet the lifeguards I could take off on the huge shorebreak, stand up and pull in. I did that and there was no one around. It was so fun, I became obsessed."

How that obsession translated into a career in wave photography and 1.3 million Instagram followers is the very reason Surfline recently caught up with Clark between shoots.

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