This remarkable image was snapped by environmental photojournalist Thomas P. Peschak.
And no, it's not fake, photoshopped, or digitally manipulated in any way. In fact, Peschak’s most famous photograph was simply shot on slide film using a Nikon F5 camera and 17-35 mm lens.
It was originally published in the September 2005 issue of Africa Geographic. That article presented a study of Great Whites in South Africa by Peschak and fellow biologist Michael Scholl. Since sharks can be either repelled or attracted by the electrical fields emitted by a boat's engine, Peschak and Scholl had chosen to use kayaks to study the sharks' behaviour. Unlike motorised vessels, kayaks are easily manoeuvred in shallow waters, and they have no noisy engines that might disturb the sharks in their natural habitat.
The scientists hoped to discover why large groups of Great Whites regularly swim so close to beaches during the summer months (it was determined that they venture inshore to interact socially with others of their species, and use the opportunity to mate and give birth).
The kayaker was marine biologist Trey Snow, who had hoped to stealthily track the local sharks, but found the tables turned when he looked around to find himself stalked by one of the ocean’s most feared predators.
Snow described sitting in a three-metre yellow sea kayak, watching the approach of a five-metre shark, as a tense and nerve-wracking experience. While the scientists had previously tested the sharks' reactions to empty kayaks, and noted no signs of aggression, this was the first time they had come face-to-face with one of the creatures.