Past Workshop

Magnum Bookmaking Masterclass in Hong Kong

Learn to edit and construct your own bestpoke photobook with Magnum photographer Moises Saman

Moises Saman

Moises Saman Highway overpass above Gezira Park. Cairo, Egypt. 2011. © Moises Saman | Magnum Photos

Magnum Photos is pleased to announce, in collaboration with Asia One Communication Group, a new Masterclass in Hong Kong on the art of the photo book.

This book-making masterclass is open to everyone and will provide an exclusive opportunity to edit and construct a bespoke photobook with a Magnum photographer.

From September 1st to 3rd, 2017, Moises Saman will lead a group of students through the book-making process. The three-day event will celebrate the agency’s time-honoured history with the photobook, and explore the creative process of this very special entity.

During the course of the Masterclass, Moises Saman will lead a public talk at Asia Society Hong Kong Center on September 3rd. More details on the content of the talk, and how to register to the talk to be published soon (Masterclass participants will be automatically registered for the talk).

This program is organized thanks to the generous support of Asia One Communications Group, Asia Society Hong Kong Center, Boogie Woogie Photography and Fine Art Asia.

Join us in celebrating Magnum’s 70th anniversary throughout 2017. Bookmark our anniversary hub to find seminal stories, new work, and discover what Magnum events are happening near you.

Moises Saman The Pyramids of Giza. Cairo, Egypt. 2013. © Moises Saman | Magnum Photos

The event

The photobook is the primary democratic form in which photographers express themselves as artists and as authors. New technologies and marketing options now make it possible for any serious photographer to make a photobook with good print quality, varieties of paper stock, options on the numbers of pages, format size and layout. One book or a thousand books can be printed. So, what makes a good photobook? And how do you make one?

This masterclass, run by Moises Saman, will help you answer these questions, but it will not be a course in digital technology (how to use InDesign or QuarkXpress, we will have technicians to help us there). It will be about editing photographs, sequencing those photographs, thinking about those photographs, the use of text and typeface, creating a narrative and making a photobook that reflects your thinking and feelings.

The workshop will take place over three days and the end result will be a PDF version of the book you create, followed by a printed version by Asia One.

In the course of the three days, Moises Saman will also present his latest awarded book Discordia, talk about other inspirational books to examine ways the books are successful, ways they fall short, and develop a deeper understanding of what a photobook can be.

You’ll be asked to come with a selection of your own photographs, no more than 50, which will be the basis of your book.
Throughout this process you will receive feedback and guidance from Moises Saman and your fellow students. This is a lot of work and will be very challenging.

Participation is strictly limited to 15 participants and one book per person.

The event will take place at Asia One Communications Group, 13/F, Asia One Tower, 8 Fung Yip Street, Chai Wan, Hong Kong.

Apply here.

Moises Saman The back of Zakariyya Gazmouz, a suspected Shabiha prisoner, his body covered in pro-Assad tattoos that he later defaced with a razor. Marae, Syria. July, 2012. © Moises Saman | Magnum Photos

Moises Saman

Moises Saman (b. 1974) was born in Lima, Peru, from a mixed Spanish and Peruvian family, but relocated to Barcelona, Spain, at 1 year old. He studied Communications and Sociology at California State University. After graduating, he moved to New York City to complete a summer internship at New York Newsday newspaper. Following that, he spent a month traveling in Kosovo photographing the immediate aftermath of the last Balkan war. From 2000 to 2007, he was a staff photographer at Newsday, focusing on the fallout of 9/11. He left Newsday to become a freelance photographer. He has received awards from the World Press Photo Pictures of the Year, the Overseas Press Club, and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

Moises Saman Street scene in the Shobra district of Cairo. Egypt. November 2011. © Moises Saman | Magnum Photos


Asia One Communications Group takes pride in its Hong Kong roots – roots which include both private and local ownership. Throughout 18 years, the Group has followed a clear, consistent strategy that has made it one of the region’s premier sources of printing expertise, creativity, and communications related services.

In the 18 years since its founding, Asia One has grown to mean many things to many people. To some, it is relied upon as one of Hong Kong’s most advanced and efficient printers of books, magazines, corporate and government literature – the core expertise upon which the company was established in 1997. To others, Asia One is a vital source of creative design, editorial, translation and publishing expertise; and to still others, marketing consultation, premium sourcing, photographic imaging, photographic book retailing, and even art exhibition.

Moises Saman Pretzel seller near Tahrir Square. Cairo, Egypt. January, 2013. © Moises Saman | Magnum Photos

Tuition fees

Early bird tickets £650 (applications received before July 1st, 2017) and £700 for normal tickets, including one copy of your bespoke book (does not include travel, accommodations or on-the-ground expenses).

All fees must be paid within 7 days of acceptance or you will forfeit your space. This does not include photo developing, post-production, travel, accommodations or meals. Refund policies will be emailed with acceptance letter.
– If a participant decides to cancel for whatever reason, it must be confirmed in writing:
Magnum Photos will reimburse all the registration costs except for £100 administrative fee, if the participant informs Magnum Photos of cancellation at least 3 weeks before the first day of the workshop. Beyond this time limit, Magnum Photos will charge the following:
. 50% of the cost if cancelled between 9 and 21 days before the workshop commences.
. 100% of the cost if cancelled less than 9 days before the workshop commences.
. All workshops that are commenced but not completed through the fault of either the contractor/or participant need to be paid in full.

Magnum Photos is not responsible for reimbursement of travel expenses in case a workshop is cancelled. We recommend that you buy refundable air tickets and/or travel insurance.

Travel and Accommodation

Participants are expected to make their own arrangements regarding travel and accommodation; a list of suitable accommodation options will be provided to successful candidates.

Please ensure you have the necessary travel documents & relevant visas in order to attend the event. Magnum Photos can provide letters of support where necessary.

Moises Saman Camels at a camel market located inside a school in the village of Birqash, on the outskirts of Cairo. Birqash, Egypt. April 22, 2011. © Moises Saman | Magnum Photos


Applications are now closed.

Upon submitting your online application you will be transferred to Paypal where you must submit a £100 application fee. This will be applied to your tuition fee invoice if you are accepted onto the workshop. The fee will be fully refunded, minus Paypal fees, if you are NOT accepted into the workshop. Applications without a fee will not be processed.

The deadline for acceptance is August 1st, and qualified applicants will be selected through a combination of the merit of their work and their personal statement, and the order of their application’s receipt.

All applications received after the deadline will be reviewed, space permitting.
Successful applicants will be informed via email on August 3rd. Full payment should be received by August 8th to fully confirm your place.

Please note: Magnum Photos reserves the right to cancel groups with less than 10 participants. Students will be given either a full refund or offered a place with an alternative photographer. In the event of a cancellation, students will be given at least 10 days advance notice.

Magnum Photos reserves the right to change or alter the program advertised.
For queries please contact Colin Lau, Magnum Educational activities coordinator:

Moises Saman A makeshift swing made with a plastic chair found inside a mosque that was occupied by Syrian Army soldiers on the Salahaddin front line in Aleppo, Syria. 2013. © Moises Saman | Magnum Photos
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