A Wildlife Photographer Captured the Moment a Great White Shark Shot 12 Feet in the Air

A Wildlife Photographer Captured the Moment a Great White Shark Shot 12 Feet in the Air

A fine art wildlife photographer has just taken what he considers to be potentially his best image yet, managing to catch a huge great white shark leaping some 12 feet into the air.

Chris Fallows was at Seal Island in his native South Africa shooting for Discovery Channel when he made the remarkable capture. He was being filmed for an Air Jaws special for Shark Week at the time, specifically for an episode in which shark experts attempted to photograph the best breach.

All of the experts approached the task using different techniques. While one opted for a drone, another decided to shoot the photo at night. Fallows opted for a tow camera. He recalls:

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, that picture is worth a thousand breaches. I can't believe how high it came out, it was just perfect... a photo you dream of. This has to be the ultimate air jaws breach.

Jeff Kurr, director of Air Jaws: Ultimate Breach, told TV Insider:

Chris got some unbelievable breaches. In fact, one of the breaches is probably the best he's ever filmed. More than any other Air Jaws we've done, this one has a really strong conservation message: We have to do something to protect these great white sharks because they are on the brink of annihilation.

If you like this work, you can see some of the 9,500 predatory events he’s captured of sharks in his time as a photographer over at his website. You can also find him on Facebook and Instagram.

Images courtesy and used with permission of Chris Fallows.

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14 Comments

Ariel Martini's picture

Nice shot but I don't get the b&w treatment, way over the top.

M M's picture

I bet the pictures are originally not very sharp. I guess they made the best out what they had.

Brahm Sterling's picture

First, black and white is not a "treatment" (incorrect word), it is a style chosen or not chosen.
Second, black and white is not "way over the top."
Sounds like you just want to start a fight instead of being positive. Negativity is always a reflection of yourself, not others.

Richard Richard's picture

Terrifying!
But enough of the photoshopping...

David Love's picture

Great moments ruined by horrible post work.

Marek Stefech's picture

Cool shots, but i think he have to pay some retoucher to make better postprocess of raw files for him.

John Xantoro's picture

Agree that the post processing is pretty horrible but this is also shows something else: Realness matters. We know the photographer was actually there and this fish really did jump out of the ocean like this.

If this scene was just a photoshop job and you wouldn't know it, you might be equally impressed. But if then somebody told you, it never happened, you would be disappointed. And the same is also true for seemingly more innocent techniques like sky replacements. Now everybody can do whatever they like with their pictures of course but I personally only have interest in photos that captured what was there. Is it a sliding scale to some extent? Sure but almost everything is a sliding scale, there is still a simple truth.

Alexander Petrenko's picture

Curious to know what he did to stage the jump...

Mutley Dastardly's picture

Sharks are wonderful animals - those creatures are much longer on earth than we humans do too - with such beautiful lines and shapes. I like the 2nd one more than the first one - that's in need of another treatment.
Still both are nice shots with potential in 'm.

Brahm Sterling's picture

Incredible.

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David Love's picture

Can someone block this moron?

Michael Hickey's picture

A seal decoy in the water and all the time in the world to sit and wait for breaches...you should get plenty of shots.
https://www.chrisfallows.com/the-pearl/