By Lorraine A. DarConte
Parish Kohanim has been a successful commercial photographer for more than thirty years. He worked in San Francisco, New York, and now in Atlanta, GA. His clients include advertising agencies, design firms, and Fortune 500 companies, including IBM, Coca-Cola, DeBeers Diamonds, and Kimberly Clark. His work appears in numerous publications including Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Forbes, Time, and Newsweek. Recently, Kohanim turned his photographic eye toward fine art photography—his first love.
Kohanim is currently photographing performers—dancers, acrobats, and contortionists, for an upcoming book and ongoing exhibits. Many of the subjects are from Cirque du Soleil. One of his favorites is Elena, an aerial acrobat artist who once danced with the Ballet Russe. "Her story is very compelling; she's very focused and dedicated," states Kohanim. "She does contortions - that look painful - I can't even imagine the body being able to do." Kohanim met Elena through a friend that's a sculptor who asked if he'd like to photograph her.
Of course, he accepted. "It felt right to shoot at the time," he says, even though he didn't have a specific purpose for the images. "I talk to a lot of people about giving themselves assignments without thinking about what the financial ramifications might be. Ninety-nine percent of the time, the images turn out to be a lucrative part of a project."
This project was no exception. Using both a Canon EOS-1D Mark II and III, as well as view cameras, Kohanim spent three full days photographing Elena, who can only hold a contortion for a few seconds. "It was one of the most thrilling, exciting, three days ever," he states. "I like working with people that inspire me. After she left, it felt like it did when you were a kid and went to a special event, and after that event was over, you felt this longing, this void in your life. That's how I felt after this shoot; I wanted more. It was so magnificent."
Besides the soon-to-be published book, photographs from the project are on display at The Parish Kohanim Fine Art Gallery, located in Kohanim's studio in the heart of the art district in Midtown Atlanta. Elena's images were shown in conjunction with his friend's sculptures of Elena. Both C Prints and inkjet prints were made for the exhibit. "I'm my own worse critic when it comes to printing," admits Kohanim, who worked with a Canon imagePROGRAF iPF6100. "It takes a lot to please me and I can't endorse any product that I don't fully believe in. Prints from the Canon imagePROGRAF iPF6100, I dare say, are better than darkroom prints. I thought I would never say that. The luminosity, the tonal range, everything is just breathtaking."
The Canon imagePROGRAF iPF6100 large format printing system has sophisticated print-head technology and high-speed output. It is engineered to produce colors, fine details, and subtleties required for challenging color environments such as photography, proofing, and professional graphic applications. The printer can recalibrate itself to the original factory settings and apply any necessary adjustments across the printer media types for a more predictable printing platform and consistent results.
The 12-color pigment ink system with LUCIA inks provides excellent color fastness and stability with a very wide color gamut. The new ink formulation for black, matte black, gray, and photo gray minimizes bronzing while providing stronger ink adhesion to print media, resulting in better scratch resistance without additional protection.
"It prints color and B&W effortlessly and I can go from matte to glossy without flushing any ink, which is a waste of ink and time. I don't have to spend endless amounts of time troubleshooting and the printer is user-friendly. I profile the paper, do some minor tweaking and one or two prints later, I've got it. Ideally, that's what everyone wants, especially me. I'd rather be shooting than sitting in front of the computer. I don't put too much emphasis on technology. I think ultimately it's the image that needs to be right," Kohanim concludes. "But the technology helps you get there."
To view more images visit: www.parishkohanim.com.