© Spéos

© Spéos

Spéos is a private higher education course. For 36 years, Spéos has been one of the reference schools for professional photography in France.
> Discover the premises of Spéos Paris by watching this video

Spéos is also recognized internationally and ranked in the Top 5 best photo schools in the world for several years by different independent rankings:


  • 1985: year of foundation
  • Campuses: Paris, Biarritz and London
  • 4,000 professional photographers in more than 50 countries
  • 35 nationalities (including India, China, USA, Russia, Korea, Latin America, Middle East, UK, France, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland …)
  • An average of 200 students each year
  • 18 studio sets in Spéos Paris and 3 studio sets in Spéos London
  • Black & White Printing: Spéos has one of the largest labs in Paris still in activity. Possibility of organizing introductions to analog photography with film development and black & white printing in the Spéos laboratory. Students will be introduced to the Stop System, a method developed by Spéos that allows to quickly take control of prints and masks. These optional sessions will take place on demand and at the end of the school year only, once students have acquired all the essential knowledge and techniques within professional photography.


International school awarding accredited diplomas·

Exclusive partnerships

Spéos is the only photo school to offer unique and exclusive specialized professional photography programs with prestigious partners:


Heritage and research

  • Spéos Photo School is also very concerned with ongoing research and in preserving a very significant French National Heritage site since 1999: The Nicéphore Niépce House Museum.
    This is the location where the very first photograph in the world was taken by the true inventor of photography, Nicéphore Niépce, some years before Daguerre and Fox Talbot. The Museum was awarded the prestigious label “Maison des Illustres” by the French Ministry of Culture in 2013, with sponsorship of the Academy of Sciences and the Academy of Fine Arts.
  • Correspondence of Nicéphore Niépce, the inventor of photography, is compiled in a book of 1,600 pages written by a descendant of Niépce and a researcher of the CNRS. This book is fully available online (in French only).
  • Spéos continues to invest in research into Nicéphore Niépce’s inventions.


  • Spéos has been part of the Voies Off festival in Arles since 1997.
  • Spéos regularly hosts photo events within its facilities, notably for the past 4 years with Fotofest Paris, the world’s second biggest photo festival after Arles.
  • The school regularly participates in other events: International Festival of Photojournalism Visa pour l’image in Perpignan, International Photo Fair of Bièvres …

Where does the name Spéos come from?

The name Spéos comes from the Greek σπέος (speos), which means “den, cave” and refers to the allegory of the cave presented by Plato in Book VII of The Republic. It depicts men turning their backs to the entrance and seeing only their own shadows and those of external objects projected on the walls of the cave. This is a situation comparable to the pinhole and the camera obscura, both precursors of the camera, where an image of reality is projected inside the box. This allegory also illustrates the conditions of man’s access to knowledge, as well as the transmission of knowledge — both of which are the very missions of the school.
> Learn more about Spéos history

Video of the End-of-the-year Exhibition 2022

Everyday life at Spéos Paris, Photo & Video School