Pearl Station and Reef, French Polynesia

Photograph by David Doubilet

A split shot shows a coral reef beneath a pearl workstation in French Polynesia's Tuamotu Archipelago. The region, a 900-mile (1,450-kilometer) arc of 76 sparsely populated atolls and two islands, is one of the world's primary producers of cultured black pearls.

—Photo shot on assignment for, but not published in, "Black Pearls of French Polynesia," June 1997, National Geographic magazine

Buy a print of this photo.