A Roaring Success – PressOn & Perou’s Big Cat Collaboration

Sector: Museums and Galleries

While large format printing might traditionally be associated with outdoor advertising – billboards, posters, vehicle graphics & more – in its purest form it’s simply another way to print any kind of imagery or graphic material. It presents a wealth of creative opportunity for artists and, in particular, photographers, as this fantastic project we worked on with Perou goes to show.

PressOn have worked on photography projects before, but none quite like this. We collaborated with renowned photographer Perou to produce a series of huge, jaw-dropping prints for his latest solo photography exhibition – his first public show in 16 years. 

This presented a fantastic challenge, and was one of our more memorable projects not just for the process of working with Perou, but the prints themselves. Printed on fabric, for tension fabric frame installation, these featured a variety of absolutely stunning photography, taken up close and personal with some of the world’s most fearsome creatures… 

Who is Perou?

When it comes to projects such as these – ones in which PressOn work closely and directly with one independent artist or creative, the relationship between the client and printer is absolutely paramount. Working with Perou was an inspiring, enjoyable process from start to finish – it’s not every day you get to work on a project like this, with a man who has photographed everyone from Dame Judi Dench to Marilyn Manson across a diverse and fascinating career. 

Perou is a British fashion, portrait, and music photographer with a remarkable talent behind the camera. Based in East Kent after many lauded years in London, his photography is instantly recognisable for its energetic style; his pictures often make the viewer feel as though they’re standing in the room as they were taken, they’re so dynamic. Ultimately, Perou is a true creative – and in this project, it was exciting to see his skill behind the lens applied not to human subjects, but to big cats…

Why Big Cats?

The Big Cat Sanctuary, in Kent, is one of the UK’s leading and most respected wildlife charities and conservation projects – they assist in the global conservation effort for big cats, work to preserve breeding integrity, and assist the return of big cats to the wild wherever possible. Mr. Perou chose to work closely with the Sanctuary in recognition of the fantastic work they do, and to take advantage of the unique setting they offer – a once in a lifetime opportunity to set up a photography studio inside a big cat enclosure. 

Perou wanted to shoot the cats as though they were celebrities, and in doing so capture their true nature and characteristics. This unique approach led to some of the most breathtaking animal photos we’ve ever seen – it’s as though the lens offers a window into who these incredible animals really are. 

Perou spent a year working closely with the Big Cat Sanctuary and getting to know the animals personally, to ensure his photography was as authentic and revealing as possible – after deciding to exhibit and auction his work for the charity, Perou knew that only the very best printing would suffice. 

Why PressOn? 

When it comes to large format printing – particularly for art or photography exhibitions, there are a lot of variables that require a deft hand and plenty of experience and expertise. Mr. Perou chose to work with PressOn for their combination of cutting-edge equipment, and outstanding knowledge and skill when it comes to printing for exhibitions such as these. 

PressOn worked closely with Perou to ensure the ten prints created brought out the best in each of his photographs, choosing substrates and materials that were durable and aesthetically striking. Printing hi-res photographic images onto fabric is notoriously challenging, but our GMG colour management software enabled us to achieve an accurate result very quickly, and Perou was complementary at every stage about the quality of the prints. 

Our HP Latex 3600 printer rendered the photographs in print with stunning clarity, even at their impressive 2×2 metre size. Finished with a silicon edge and installed in a custom frame built by Ultima Displays, the final prints rendered are as structurally sound as their aesthetic is sleek — suitable for their upcoming public exhibition. 

A Roaring Success

Perou’s exhibition was displayed at London Bridge Station, after an overnight installation by Andy (one of our managing directors) and Kieron (our Production Manager) – Perou attended, and even managed to snap some fantastic pictures of the guys during the install, which was completed in a matter of hours. The exhibition ran during December, and the prints were then put up for auction to raise money for the Sanctuary. 

This kind of project isn’t something that every print supplier would be able to manage, but PressOn love a challenge – printing for bespoke, one-off exhibitions usually isn’t always straightforward; there are no templates or ‘tried and tested’ methods to use, and it requires a lot of innovative thinking and practical forethought to ensure the results meet the artist’s standard. Fortunately, when it came to Mr. Perou, his creative energy was infectious, and the solutions PressOn devised will be enthralling the eventual owners of these prints for years to come.

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