Phil Parmet: Midnight Mission

At the age of 80, cinematographer and photographer Phil Parmet adventures into his first photographic adventure in color. The culmination of this journey is his book Midnight Mission.
The images of the series are mostly shot on an iPhone, recording spontaneous moments that speak about life in Los Angeles across neighborhoods and social classes. The title comes from the name of a mission for the homeless in downtown LA, and it alludes to the darkness that’s often part of city life. “It is really a collection of moments from my life in Los Angeles,” says Phil Parmet. “What I photograph everyday, mostly spontaneously with my iPhone. There is classic beauty and surprises in the occurrences of everyday life in the big city. (

Midnight Mission is my latest book, and though it is small (42 plates), I think it is my best. For me, it really works as a group of photos that make a statement about how we live, mostly shot in the big city, LA. appropriately “the city of angels.” I see the book as a virtual gallery show. The books are a little pricey because they are one-offs, original fungible art.”

About the Author

Phil Parmet began his career as a documentary cinematographer in the 70s. Through the 80s, he directed and/or photographed over sixty documentaries for most of the principal American and world news organizations. Music films he photographed include Led Zeppelin’s The Song Remains the Same, Frank Zappa’s Baby Snakes, Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Free Bird, No Nukes, as well as numerous music videos for artists including Springsteen, Souxie and the Banshees, Roseanne Cash and more.

A portrait of Phil Parmet by Kevin Winter

Awards for documentary films he has photographed include Academy Award for Harlan County USA, Academy Award for American Dream, Emmy Award, The Columbia Dupont Prize for Television Journalism, and a National Endowment Individual Artist’s Grant.
As a director of photography on feature films, he has DP’d more than 30 major movies. Awards include the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance for Alex Rockwell’s In the Soup.
His work includes Rob Zombie’s Halloween, The Devil’s Rejects, and the Tarantino-produced Grindhouse and Four Rooms. He shot Animal Factory and Lonesome Jim for Steve Buscemi, the Burrowers for Lionsgate, and The Roommate for Sony. Currently, he shoots on the ABC/Disney show Switched at Birth.

He has produced a number of films, including Mercy, The Meadowlands, and recently with, “Raisin’ Cain’ ‘ a history of Cains Ballroom. Photographic works have been exhibited in museums and galleries in New York, LA, Paris, and Berlin. He had a major one-man show at the prestigious Alfred Stieglitz’s Photo Club New York, featuring two years of work documenting the fall of the Dulvalier Government and the rise of democracy in Haiti.
His photographs are represented in the permanent collection of the Getty Museum in LA.

Hardcover: 44 pages, 42 color plates
Publisher: Blurb, Incorporated (October 12 2021)
Language: English
Size: 10 x 8 inches
ISBN-10: 1006406182
ISBN-13: 978-1006406188

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