The Creative Documentary and Photojournalism Course by Magnum Photos & Spéos is now taking applications for the 2023/2024 course. Now in its seventh year, this intensive course will take place in Paris from September 2023 till July 2024, and will culminate with a graduate show at the Magnum Photos gallery in Paris.

Learn more about the course directly from last year’s Course and students’ work by reading an article here and from teachers and a former student by listening to the recording session of the Online Open Day here.

Each photographer is expanding my vision of what is possible, both in the actual photographs but also the scope of what I can do professionally,” – 2022/2023 student.⁠

The program is designed for students who wish to pursue a career in documentary photography and/or photojournalism, in the Magnum Photos tradition of visual storytelling.

Students will work on a project under the mentorship of Magnum photographers while attending workshops and lectures by various photographers such as Susan Meiselas, Matt Black, Bieke Depoorter, Olivia Arthur and Antoine d’Agata, to name a few.

During the nine-month course, students will learn from the photographers themselves and their experience, whilst also receiving feedback about their own work and projects throughout the course. In a small group, they will have the opportunity to discuss any problems or challenges they encounter, and how to manage them. They will also learn how to edit and sequences images, and above all, what it is like to work on assignments and projects in the field, including on a tight schedule.

The formal program is delivered by Spéos and its appointed teachers.

Course description:

(To view the full curriculum, visit the Spéos website)

Semester I: 1 day per week at the Magnum Photos Agency
The programme will be divided between practical assignments led by Magnum photographers, and informal meetings with industry professionals with a focus on NGOs and professionals working in fund-raising and the cultural sector. Magnum staff will also share insights on how they work with photographers and present the various departments within Magnum such as commercial & editorial, cultural and gallery.
During the first semester, students will:
– discover and understand the daily activities of a professional photo agency in general and Magnum Photos in particular,
– learn how to approach editors and commissioning editors,
– work on short assignments designed to teach them the skills of being a professional photographer.
Key concepts:
– Workshops with Magnum photographers
– How to research and develop photographic stories
– The current market: editorial, commercial, print sales, and non-profit.

Semester II: 1 day per week at the Magnum Photos Agency
– Developing a personal project under the guidance of Magnum photographers: from research to completion.
– Collective exhibition at the Magnum Gallery in Paris



Creative Documentary and Photojournalism by Magnum Photos and Spéos
Titre de Photographe RNCP niveau 6 – code NSF 323 t


Price: €30,750

Contact and Application

For enquiries relating to this course please email

Click here if you wish to apply online on Spéos website.

About the Mentor

Stuart Franklin

Franklin studied painting and drawing under Leonard McComb in Oxford and Whitechapel, London, and from 1976–1979 photography at West Surrey College of Art and Design, where he graduated with a BA. Moreover, between 1995 and 1997, he studied geography at the University of Oxford, first receiving a BA and the Gibbs Prize for geography. He received a doctorate in Geography from the University of Oxford in 2000. Franklin was awarded a professorship in documentary photography in 2016.

From 1980 until 1985, Franklin worked with Agence Presse Sygma in Paris. During that time he photographed the civil war in Lebanon, unemployment in Britain, famine in Sudan and the Heysel Stadium disaster. Joining Magnum Photos in 1985, he became a full member in 1989. In the same year, Franklin photographed the uprising in Tiananmen Square and shot one of the Tank Man photographs, first published in Time Magazine, as well as widely documenting the uprising in Beijing, earning him a World Press Photo Award.

In 1989 Franklin travelled with Greenpeace to Antarctica. He worked on about twenty stories for National Geographic between 1991 and 2009, subjects including Inca conqueror Francisco Pizarro and the hydro-struggle in Quebec and regional stories such as Buenos Aires and Malaysia.  In addition, he worked on book and cultural projects. In October 2008, his book Footprint: Our Landscape in Flux was published by Thames & Hudson. An ominous photographic document of Europe’s changing landscape, it highlights Franklin’s deep ecological concern. In the same year he participated in a project on Contemporary Global Slavery, a group Magnum book and exhibition.

During 2009 Franklin curated an exhibition on Gaza – “Point of No Return” for the Noorderlicht Photo Festival. Since 2009 Franklin has focused on a long term landscape project in Norway published as “Narcissus” in 2013. Recently Franklin has worked on documentary projects on doctors working in Syria, and immigration in Calais. Franklin’s most recent book, “The Documentary Impulse” was published by Phaidon in April 2016. It investigates the nature of truth in reporting and the drive towards self-representation beginning 50,000 years ago with cave art through to the various iterations and impulses that have guided documentary photography along its differing tracks for nearly 200 years. Franklin was the general chair of the World Press Photo jury 2017. In 2021 Franklin won the Medical Journalists’ Association Feature of the Year award for his story on Covid in a London hospital (‘Eye of the Storm’, The Sunday Times Magazine, May 3, 2020).

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