Out of the swallowing darkness of the African night, a lone male lion emerges from the still wilderness, its eyes filled with purpose and power.
This highly charged moment from nature was captured as part of a collection of striking black and white photographs from Africa's Kalahari Desert.
Captured by South African photographer Hannes Lochner over a two-year period, they provide a unique perspective into the teeming wildlife of one of world's most bewitching terrains.
'The Kalahari is a very dramatic and striking place to shoot and capture wildlife in some of its most wild locations,' said the 38-year-old.
Enlarge Lone hunter: With tall grass providing the perfect cover, a male lion emerges from the inky blackness
'It's an arid and dusty, tough, natural place where only the fittest survive.
'The light is really good and the colours are very good.'
A self-taught snapper who only turned professional four years ago, Lochner is adept in all styles of photography, but he holds a special place in his heart for black and white pictures.
'What I always try to do is get a sense of personality out of the animals, some emotion,' he said.
'Black and white has a lot more emotion for me. 'You get the affection, the feeling and the sentiment in their eyes. It just tells it more.'
Enlarge Shake on it: Elephants greet each other by entwining their trunks. It is a surprising display of intimacy
Enlarge Hunting: A black-shouldered kite displays its perfect wing shape as it searches for a meal above the Kalahari
The Kalahari desert is part of the huge sand basin that reaches from the Orange River up to Angola, in the west to Namibia and in the east to Zimbabwe.
Spanning an incredible 350,000 square miles it is the home of the San Bushmen, who have lived in the desert for up to 20,000 years.
Though nominally a desert, the Kalahari supports diverse wildlife, thanks to variable rains in the winter and spring, and a swampy region at its northern end.
It contains the Central Kalahari Game Reserve - the second-largest in the world - with antelope, lions, hyenas and giraffes.
Subject and artist: A baboon looks to the heavens, captured by wildlife photographer Hannes Lochner
Now Lochner, who has already released two books - The Colours Of Southern African and Colours Of The Kalahari - is set to release a limited number of these black-and-white prints entitled Black And White Africa.
Combining unseen images and a selection from his two-year portfolio, just 20 prints of each photograph will be available for sale.
The spectacular set also includes arresting images of elephants greeting by wrapping their trunks together, several shots capturing the fierce concentration of birds of prey preparing for a kill, and a beautiful and emotional image of a baboon looking upwards as if to the heavens.
Dedicated to his profession, Hannes has suffered for his art, having been stung by scorpions no less than 16 times.
But it's a price worth paying, he believes. He said: 'I'm absolutely willing to go through that for my pictures. I spend most of the day out in the field. Sometimes for 20 hours at a time, sometimes I don't go home at all.
'I work hard but it's satisfying so it doesn't really feel like work.'
Read more: Spectacular black and white portraits show the beauty and power of Kalahari wildlife | Mail Online