Alumni Testimonials

Liza Moura, Spéos 2018

Liza MOURA
Brazil
http://www.lizamoura.com

After a course in Art History, I wanted to immerse myself in Photography. At Spéos, I was precisely oriented towards finding my own photographic and visual identity. I had the opportunity to have highly qualified professionals as teachers, real masters in photography who transmitted me a knowledge that I had never imagined existed before entering school!

The photojournalism team is excellent, it transmits not only the technique but also the passion. This school opened me to a different world. It’s a unique experience.

Through Spéos, I had the opportunity to know the Paris Match Student Grand Prix where I submitted my final study project (a series entitled “Jaurès, the corner of hope”) and I won the Public Prize with the most voted report!
With this work, I was also chosen to exhibit in Arles with the BYOPaper project. It was a good start.

At Spéos, the exchange of experiences is constant, not only with the teachers, but also with the other students. I met people from all over the world and I made friends that I will keep forever.

I highly recommend the Spéos School to anyone looking for a high level of training and a memorable experience. Many thanks to the Spéos team and in particular to Phillippe Bachelier, Ana Cruz and Leonardo Antoniadis.

Robert Hyde, Spéos 2018

Robert HYDE
United States
www.roberthyde.xyz

The Spéos/Magnum Creative Documentary program was exactly what I needed; a fast-track to a professional photography practice.

The administrative team at Spéos is highly competent and the teachers and guest lecturers know their fields intimately. The workshops at Magnum were instructive, inspiring and formative and the staff was warmly welcoming.

Invitations to exclusive Magnum events and the opportunity to collaborate with students in Germany and Denmark were unexpected pleasures.

Penelope Thomaidi, Spéos 2018

Penelope THOMAIDI
Greece
www.penelopethomaidi.com

Studying at the Creative Documentary and Photojournalism 1-year course with Spéos and Magnum Photos has been an intensive and very productive experience that widened my understanding of both the photographic practice and the photographic industry.

Learning on the side of Magnum photographers and recognized professionals of the industry was a great privilege. We were encouraged to be critical towards our production and challenged to overcome difficulties in order to get the most out of our photography. The development of our graduation long-term project was quite a life-changing experience.

While every class with Magnum gave food for thought related to the way we take pictures, Spéos teachers taught us how to organize our production and be prepared to meet the standards of the professional world. At the end of the course, a series of lectures and portfolio reviews was a unique chance to meet in person important players of the French photographic world.

The human approach and the kindness of most of the people we interacted with, was itself a source of inspiration which makes me to consider myself lucky to have studied with Spéos and Magnum Photos.

Shortly after the course, I became member of a photographer’s collective and I feel that the experiences and the relationships that started in Paris are the best beginning for my professional activity.

Daniel Barreto Mezzano, Spéos 2017

Daniel BARRETO MEZZANO
Peru
www.danielbarretomezzano.com

I spent an amazing year meeting several Magnum photographers giving us an insight on how they work as well as learning the ropes on how to build a photo story and presenting it to the media.

Sébastien Cohen de Lara, Spéos 2017

Sébastien COHEN DE LARA
France
sebcohenphotographer.com

This class was an amazing experience. I learned with the greatest photographers of the world, like Susan Meiselas or Max Pinckers.

Sergio Corona, Spéos 2017

Sergio CORONA
Italy
www.sergiocorona.com

I had the opportunity to explore, make mistakes and build my practice. In the world outside it’s rare to have an opportunity to have genuinely explore and be challenged. The program provided me with an amazing community of colleagues and friends who I am still in touch with today and often work or collaborate with.

Adam DelGiudice, Spéos 2017

Adam DELGIUDICE
United States
www.delgiudicephoto.com

My experience studying at Magnum & Spéos International Photography School has been a dream come true and a life experience I will always remember. Under the guidance and critical eye of some of the titans of documentary photography I’ve grown as both a photographer and a person. There is no substitute for experience and this experience has been life changing, to be able to do workshops with the photographers I look up to and to have my work critiqued by them has honed my talents allowed me to solidify my vision. I will have graduated this program changed for the better and am extremely grateful to everyone at Magnum both the photographers and the gracious and hospitable staff at the agency for giving me this incredible opportunity to nurture and develop my passion for photojournalism.

Nicole Haun, Spéos 2017

Nicole HAUN
https://nicolehaunphotography.com/

The Photojournalism & Creative documentary program paired with Magnum Photos has been an invaluable experience for me. My photography has improved, my vision has become more focused, and I have gained confidence in my style of photography. I was able to work on a long term story and get feedback from the Magnum photographers and my professors intermittently throughout the process. I can say that I will have gained many things once I am finished with this program, and I am grateful for this collaboration.

Lance Laurence, Spéos 2017

Lance LAURENCE
United States
lancelaurence.com

Through my time in the Magnum Photos & Spéos International Photography School Creative and Documentary storytelling Master Class, I learned how to better organize a photographic essay and how I could make a series stylistically coherent. Before I came for the program I just made “pretty pictures.” They often times looked as if they were created by different photographers and they didn’t offer much deeper insights. Now I have a much better understanding of how to create a story that is structured well and conveys a narrative that resonates with viewers.

Mariana Luque Rosas, Spéos 2017

Mariana LUQUE ROSAS
marianaluque.com

Meeting and interacting with the Magnum photographers has been really enriching and helpful. Having an insight into their work and getting their feedback of yours is the highlight of this program. I’ve improved my editing, composition and creativity. It’s been a pleasure being part of this legandary agency for a year!

Amudhini Ramakrishnan, Spéos 2017

Amudhini RAMAKRISHNAN
India
amudhini.com

The Creative documentary and Photojournalism program provided me with historical knowledge about visual storytelling and helped me develop critical thinking towards documentary photography. The classes and workshops conducted by Magnum photographers and staffs nourished me with information about various documentary practices. The opportunity to learn from legendary photographers and to analyze their work gave me the freedom to develop my own theoretical framework and shape my work in a creative way.

Antonia Sehlstedt, Spéos 2017

Antonia SEHLSTEDT
Sweden
antoniasehlstedt.format.com

It has been a beautiful experience in many ways, to grow and be challenged throughout this year with the guidance of teachers, storytellers, photographers and staff of Spéos International Photography School and Magnum Photos, all representing and passing on a deep love and respect for photography. I hope all aspiring artists, all aspiring everything will have the opportunity to do a workshop with someone their work speaks to. I think it is very important to find a mentor, a guru. I discovered many great photographers during the year but above all great people, passionate about what they are doing and about bringing good work and journalism to the world and that’s really what it all comes down to. Special thank you, Susan Meiselas, Patrick Zachmann and Stanley Greene.

Taushik Mandal, Spéos 2017

Taushik MANDAL
India
www.taushikmandal.com

During the time when I was finalizing a career change from Engineering to Photography, my research got me to Spéos Paris. What appealed to me most was the school’s high ranking and a very informative website with Alumni listing.

This Alumni Directory is crucial as it allows prospective students to look up past scholar’s portfolios and gauge the progress made after a stint at Spéos. There is no doubt that Spéos Alumni have stunning portfolios and a similar aspiration shaped my decision to sign up for the Professional photography in 1 year program back in 2016.

I particularly enjoyed study topics in Printing techniques, Photojournalism, Visual Identity, Image Management/Publication and Styling for commercial photography assignments.

Living in Paris in itself is a great education in art and history. The city is a massive art gallery and the numerous museum visits and gallery openings that I attended further shaped my education. Not to forget my fellow artists who were making the same journey as me, living, collaborating and enjoying with them the slices of life taught me so much more too.

I highly recommend this whole experience to anyone who is willing to shift out of their comfort zone and make or add photography to their personal and professional art practice. Furthermore, I also recommend being open to new experiences, I could write a book on mine but yours could be the next volume in the series!

William Waterworth, Spéos 2017

William WATERWORTH
Great Britain
www.williamwaterworth.com

I didn’t want to partake in a 3-year course as it seemed like a waste of time. So the one-year program at Spéos was just right for me. I was looking for a short and efficient program. I entered the school knowing nothing, and came out knowing enough to tackle the bigger picture.

The intense schedule suited me and got me out of bed in the morning and working. Within a couple of months, I’d transferred to solely black and white and was picking up a vague style through the help of my Visual Identity teacher. That certain class pushed me to take more pictures and I slowly got addicted.

Technically I knew nothing, didn’t know what ISO meant or how the camera functioned to gain a correct exposure, or how to edit a photo. So the technical classes helped me a lot.

Being away from home at Spéos put me out my comfort zone and shook me up in a good way. Being disorientated in a city you’re unfamiliar with tests you photographically.

The course fundamentally helped me find my agent in Paris and put me forward to Prix Picto de la Mode where I came 3rd. Coming 3rd enabled free printing and resulted in my first photographic exhibition in London last year!

Meritxell Cortés, Spéos 2017

Meritxell CORTÉS
Spain
www.meritxellcortesphotography.com

After working in research for 10 years, I realized it was not making me happy anymore. That is why I decided to quit and study photography in Spéos. I had been studying photography for myself for years but I wanted to do a technical formation in order to well establish the basis and take my photography to the next level.

I chose Spéos because they have a very complete year program, and for me the possibility of getting the skills I need to work in photography in an intense year formation was a plus. During the 32-week program I improved my technical skills, experimenting with lighting and different ways of taking pictures in order to start developing my own style.

During the Expert Modules I learn about photography as a business which is as important as having the technical skills. We learned about how to show our work and how to get clients but also about copyright laws, the different status a photographer can have, we got to know a lot of professional photographers who came to the school to talk about their different experiences.

The school is a multicultural place where you get to know people from all over the world. Working with people from different cultures and different styles is very enriching. Besides living in Paris as a student is a one-time life experience!

My background in science helps my work in the field of scientific photojournalism. I also work for private clients, some of which have found me through the school. In my personal work I have two different directions. I like to experiment with old process techniques which keeps me involved with chemistry. I also like to take pictures of staged situations to express certain feelings or ideas.
Actually one of this projects that I did in the school in collaboration with another colleague was recently selected to be exposed in Byopaper in the rencontres d’Arles and I also had an article published in Fisheye Magazine.

I recommend Spéos to anyone who wants to start a career in photography and who is willing to work hard. The intensive program demands a lot of work but you also learn and improve your skills very fast.

Elina Kostabi, Spéos 2016

Elina KOSTABI
Estonia
www.elinakostabi.com

I had been photographing for many years, and looked for a way to develop my skills further. As my passion has always been documentary and photojournalism, I chose the Creative Documentary and Photojournalism, Magnum Photos-Spéos program. I am so glad that I did!

I learned so much during the one year at Spéos, and the ongoing feedback that I received for my work from experienced and talented Magnum photographers was simply invaluable.

The program gave me solid foundation for going into photography as a business, and even more importantly created the friendships and network of contacts that I have been relying on, and will continue to rely on, long after completing my studies.

Whether for developing yourself as an artist, or for starting to pursue a professional career in photography, I can wholeheartedly recommend Spéos as a first choice.

Eileen Cho, Spéos 2016

Eileen CHO
Korea, USA
www.eileenwcho.com

I chose Spéos because of the Magnum Photos & Spéos Program, international prestige and recognition, and because I wanted a new adventure in Paris!
I was working with sea turtles before in ocean conservation and I wanted to experience something new. I grew up looking up to Magnum photographers such as Inge Morath. When I saw this program, I took a leap of faith. It was truly one of the best decisions I have ever made!

I was part of the inaugural Magnum Program class so it was super cool to be a part of something new and exciting. Having access to the Magnum library and archives while learning from the Magnum greats was truly a once in a lifetime opportunity. I benefited a lot personally.

My current career as a photographer wouldn’t be possible without Spéos. I am a photographer today because of the education I received from the school.I loved Paris so much that I haven’t left since I started at Spéos! I just love that there is always something going on and that there is so much to experience.

I would recommend Spéos to those who are willing to put in the work. Photography is not an easy profession. You need to be willing to work hard!

Ksenia Usacheva, Spéos 2014

Ksenia USACHEVA
Russia
www.kseniausacheva.com

Studying at Spéos was an extraordinary experience and my best year of a student life in Paris. I did the 32-week program, that gives you all the necessarily skills in technical, as well as in creative part for establishing yourself as an artist. Moreover, the international atmosphere of art students from all over the world in mix with the beauty and historical heritage of Paris dives you in a totally creative universe and helps to discover your artistic way. Spéos brings your photography understanding on an international level.

Thanks to Spéos experience I found myself as a photography artist, developing my personal art series. I established myself as a professional in a highly competitive field, working with international magazines, designers and fashion brands.

I highly recommend Spéos to any person who seriously considers studying photography in a professional way.

Samir Tlatli, Spéos 2013

Samir TLATLI
Tunisia, France
www.samirtlatli.com

Graduated from a business school, and long passionate about photography, I decided to try a reconversion. Spéos, a school recognized by the best professionals, had the training that suited me. It offers the opportunity for time-sensitive people like me to train and catch up very quickly. A 32-week program, well-built modules, very professional teachers with impeccable follow-up.

Today, I am a professional photographer and laureate of several competitions. Belonging to a well-managed Alumni network is a major asset that Spéos brings to us during our career. A real resource that offered me many professional and personal opportunities.

I strongly recommend Spéos to anyone who wants to have a safe training in photography and who wants to evolve in the world of image and art. However, you will have to be ready to work a lot!

So I have only one word to say to you: Get started! It’s so exciting.

Rebecca Ravneberg, Spéos 2011

Rebecca RAVNEBERG
Norway
www.rebeccaravneberg.com

I stumbled upon my passion for fine art photography by accident. An accident that made me impatient to start shooting with as much competence as possible.
Spéos, with its intensive master program taught by highly skilled lecturers in the very epicenter of photography – Paris – was exactly what I was looking for.

At Spéos I saw the light! And realized that it’s everything to me. Getting to play around with light at the school’s studios made me understand how light actually works. A competence I brought outside, to the natural light, which ended up to be a signature in my work.

My time at Spéos changed the direction of my life and gave me the skills to express my art. Even more, it made me realize what my passion is all about: sharing true, beautiful moments is my way of contributing to the world. And I get to play and have fun while doing so!

For those curious to attend Spéos, I’ll say you’ll come a long way with passion alone. Even a rookie can learn all the basics from the passionate lectures. And off course, France is where the first photo was shot – so where else would you go to learn to about photography?