A majestic great white shark has been delightfully terrorizing beachgoers near the shore of Palolem Beach, South Goa, India – but they needn’t fear because this Jaws look-alike is made of stone. The protruding life-sized rock was transformed by American artist Jimmy Swift, who was noticed the perfectly shaped ‘head’ and was inspired by the horror film.

“I saw the rock when I was walking down the beach and the poster from the movie Jaws popped into my head. I basically downloaded an image of the ‘Jaws’ poster on my phone and used it as a reference,” Swift told Bored Panda. For the original artist, this is how much of his inspiration hits.

“Sometimes I plan things but for most of the time, I just see something and create it. For example, the shape of the rock was just soo perfect that I didn’t need to think about much. The shark was already there. I just pumped a little life into him/her. If you see the before photo of the elephant you can already see the eye and ear. So I basically just brought those lines out with a little white and black spray paint,” he explained.

The artist’s spray-paint creation has become a landmark for travelers in the region and it’s easy to see why.

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Artist Jimmy Swift transformed this protruding rock in South Goa, India into a ‘Jaws’ inspired shark head – and it’s terrifying

Image credits: Jimmy Swift

The graffiti artist shared a photo of his creation on Instagram and said it was “the hardest thing I’ve ever painted. I was literally beat up by the waves and rising tide and forced to stop before it was finished. I could have done better, but between the blowing sand and wind, splashing waves, burning hot sun and the fact I’ve never painted a shark before or painted on a 3 dimensional surface like a rock…. I think it turned out OK. When I first saw this rock it looked like a perfect place for a great white. Hopefully it doesn’t scare the crap out of people! This was inspired by the movie posters from Jaws…. A movie that scared the crap out of me when I was a kid!”  Swift has worked as an artist for over 15 years and traveled to over 90 countries, contributing art everywhere he goes. He said so far he has done 10 or 12 rock paintings.

The shark has gone on to provide glorious photo ops for swimmers

Image credits: Jimmy Swift

Despite the complicated conditions, the artist said it took him an hour to complete. He said the most difficult aspect of creating public art for him is not just the climate but the people: “People are mostly nice and just curious but sometimes when people start gathering around it turns into something that I don’t love. I guess some people like being watched, but I like working in private. So when I paint I do it in places where not many people are or at times of the day when people are sleeping or just getting up. I painted the shark right around sunrise. I was also trying to time the tides to make sure I painted in low tide, but unfortunately, I found out the hard way that my weather predictions were a bit off.”

Image credits: tunnocks_world_tour

Due to the elements, Swift must revisit his shark for maintenance

“I used water-based spray paint which is better for the environment but it also doesn’t last as long as traditional spray paint so that’s why the shark fades with time. I have gone back twice to paint it and I plan on going back again this coming February.”

Image credits: Jimmy Swift

Image credits: Jimmy Swift

Image credits: Jimmy Swift

Swift says the reaction to his public art pieces has been shocking

Image credits: pv1606

“I actually was surprised that it became what it’s become. Mostly I was surprised how it went viral on the internet. Tons of people re-posted it and even some celebrities like Slash from Guns n Roses.”

Image credits: northern.gypsy

He said no matter what feeling or reaction his work emotes, big or small, for him this is the point of public art: “I think my favorite thing about public art is the impact it can have on people. You never know what one of your creations will bring to others. Some people might find it cute and something you take a selfie in front of and for others it might open up a deeper feeling within.”

Image credits: aquaburns

The shark was not his only mother nature inspired creation. He transformed this large rock into an elephant complete with some bushy hair

Image credits: jimmy_swift

The elaborate elephant mural was a longer labor of love.”The elephant that was about 3 times the size [as the shark] took me about 2 hours. But I wasn’t really in a rush. I would just add some lines and then walk back and check the composition.”

People loved the artistic concept and realism