Andrew Baines is best-known for his surrealist photographs of men and women in suits, lining the shallows of an Adelaide beach.
But the scene was all-too real when he spotted a shark swimming within metres of a paddle-boarder, around 50 metres out from the shore of Henley Beach, earlier this month.
“I was at Joe’s Kiosk at Henley South having a coffee,” the artist recalls.
“There were a few people on those boards, swimming around.
“There were a few dolphins kicking around, and then I saw this fin, and it didn’t go up and down like dolphins’ (do)”.
“It was heading near this bloke was on a board.
“I’m pretty sure he thought it was dolphin, because there were dolphins around that morning.
“But he was a bronzy (bronze whaler shark).
“I was half thinking – should I start screaming?
“And then I thought – there’s no way this bloke’s going to hear me.”
“And then I thought – I’ve got this little camera: I’ll get a shot.”
“That’s what a good photographer does,” Baines joked.
“You put aside the humanity and get a good shot.”
The shark swam by without incident.
Bronze whaler sharks infrequently attack humans.
However, fatal attacks have been attributed to members of the species, including the death of a swimmer at Tathra Beach in New South Wales in 2014.
Baines will be conducting a charity photo shoot next Sunday to help house cancer patients and their families.
“It’s 10 years since I did my first photo shoot, so I’m going to get everybody to dress in black suits, and bring a black umbrella and bring a soft toy,” he told InDaily.
“We’re going to line up about 300 people, in the water, knee deep water, looking to the horizon.
“Everybody will pay 10 dollars, and the money will go towards building three bedroom units for cancer patients in the country … so they can house their families as well (as themselves).”
We value local independent journalism. We hope you do too.
InDaily provides valuable, local independent journalism in South Australia. As a news organisation it offers an alternative to The Advertiser, a different voice and a closer look at what is happening in our city and state for free. Any contribution to help fund our work is appreciated. Please click below to become an InDaily supporter.