Workshop presentation

The “Ocean in movement” workshop aims at acquiring the best skills to photograph the ocean in its different movements: those of the waves and those who ride them (surfers, kitesurfers, bodysurfers, standup paddle surfers, lifeguards…).
The workshop begins with theoretical training. The following days, the participants practice in small groups various approaches under different conditions. An analysis of the images taken follows in the evening to allow the definition of personal improvement objectives for the following day. Via their interaction with the ocean, the participants will be able to discover the richness and beauty of the light and landscapes of the Basque Coast and the South of the Landes.

This workshop aims to anticipate, follow and capture movements and variations in trajectory (use of auto-focus, collimators, centers of interest…). Participants learn to capture the magnificent interactions between light and matter, how to freeze or spin the movement, and how to put a landscape or shoreline into an action or wave shot. The exercises will alternate the use of focal lengths, going from the shortest (10 mm f/3.5) to the longest (600 mm f/4 fixed lens with tripod or monopod), passing through macro and water photography.

The key word is “adaptation”. Adaptation of techniques and ways how to capture the ever-changing characteristics of the ocean. During this workshop, the participants will sharpen their sensitivity and consolidate various techniques in order to extract the beauty and essence of multiple manifestations of the ocean, from the smallest (a micro wave of a few centimeters dying on the shore) to the largest (huge explosions of giant waves in the open sea).

Next session: 2-6 September, 2024 ; 9-13 September, 2024
Campus: Biarritz (South-West of France)
Language of instruction: English, French
Tuition: €3,500 (accommodation and meals at Spéos Biarritz included)
Logistic information: please contact Spéos

Day 1
Arrival of the tparticipants on site.
From 2pm, beginning of the theoretical training on the following subjects: introduction to sea and action photography, angle, composition, depth of field applied to landscapes, examples of action photos, sports and ocean combined. Impact on exposure time, sensor sensitivity, suitable subjects, necessary equipment (from fisheye to 600mm, boxes), burst mode, post-production specific to action and sea images.

Days 2-3-4
In the morning, photography practice of the ocean in motion in a different place each day – from Hossegor to Guéthary. Choice of shoots according to the current conditions as well as the level of each participant (in situ, in the water). Picnic for lunch.
In the afternoon, practice of ocean shore photography. How to adapt to changing light, weather and sea conditions (swell, wind, tide) to choose the best spots. Visualization and analysis of the photos taken during the day.

Day 5
Between 9am and 11am, practical exercise in the same place with different photographic approaches for each participant. For example: two participants in the water (one with a short focal length, the second with a medium focal length style 85 mm f:1.8), one from the front with 600 mm, one from the side with 600 mm, one in “line up” photography with integration of the landscape in the foreground and the background.
11am-12pm: overall debrief and comparison of points of view for the same scene exercise.
Lunch time. End of the workshop around 2pm.

Specific equipment will be provided to participants: long focal length lenses from 300 mm f/2.8 to 600 mm f:4, and waterproof cases for Canon cameras.

Possibility to use 2 Canon L USM 600 mm f/4, the reference lens of real professionals, 1 Canon L IS USM II 300 mm f/2.8 (with extender X1.4 or not), 1 Canon zoom 100-400 mm L IS USM f/4-5.6 and 3 Canon EOS 1DX cameras and 2 Canon EOS 1D mark IV cameras (ideal for an approach in long focal length photography with multiplying factorX1.3).

3 waterproof housings with 3 interchangeable windows each, depending on the lens used (fisheye/short focal length from 10 to 18 mm, medium focal length between 50 and 100 mm) from Liquideye, CMT, Aquatech.

Cases dedicated to Canon EOS 1 DX, EOS 1D Mark IV and Sony A6000 ultra compact hybrid. Possibility to provide the latest GOPro Hero 9.
Provision of lenses: Canon 50mm f/1.4, 85 mm f/1.8, 70-200 mm LIS USM f/2.8, Tokina 10-18 mm f/3.5.

The “Ocean in movement” workshop is taught by Laurent Masurel.
A graduate of Montpellier Business School and with a degree in economics, he has been a professional photographer for over 20 years, specializing in sea and extreme sports photography. He was himself ranked 4th worldwide in bodysurfing in Hawaii in 1998, and has more than 200 photo reports to his credit throughout the world for
– specialized magazines: Surf Session, Surfer, Surf Europe, Fluir, Tresenta, Surf Portugal, Japan Surfing Life
– geographical magazines: Géo, Ça m’intéresse, Pyrénées Mag, Pays basque Mag
– weeklies: L’Equipe Mag, Le Monde diplomatique, Le Point, Le Nouvel Obs, Le Figaro, Courrier International, Néon

Laurent is the official photographer of the World Surf League, for which he has been following the world surfing circuit (including Hawaii) for over 15 years. He is considered one of the best aquatic photographers in the world and films / photographs for different production companies including La Nuit de la Glisse. He was a speaker at La photokina for PNY Electronics, for whom he is an ambassador.

He also works for various outdoor brands (ads, catalogues…) such as Patagonia, Quiksilver, Roxy, Rip Curl, Decathlon, Billabong. He regularly exhibits between Paris and the Aquitaine coast.

Laurent is the author and co-author of about fifteen books. Among the most recent are Line up published by Hondarra and Côte à Côte published by Surf Session. Very attached to the Basque Coast and the Landes, he knows it by heart, including the most secret spots between Bilbao and Biscarosse.

Enrollment and Contact

Registrations are open all year round and subject to availability.
Feel free to contact Spéos if you have any questions about this program.
At any time you are most welcome to come and visit the school, just make an appointment!