Wildlife photography workshop from floating blinds to photograph water birds

We organize wildlife photography workshops from floating blinds for photographers hungry for natural beauties and passionate for water birds. The technique of using floating blinds allows making unique and very creative photos. It allows not only to be closer to the birds to observe and photograph them but it also allows for views unobtainable from a tripod in a hide on land.

These workshops are organized only for five photographers. With few people it ensures the best possible encounters and the trainees receive the best tips to manage good pictures.

Purple heron snorting in a pond in La Dombes. Photograph taken from a floating blind.
Purple heron snorting in a pond in La Dombes. Photograph taken from a floating blind.

The floating blind: a technique to move to the surface of the water in the marshes

As the name suggests it is primarily a photographic technique based on hiding the photographer from the animals. The floating blind allow the photographer to watch without to be seen when walking in the marshes. A floating blind is made with a light inflatable structure. It can easily float. The floating structure is then covered with a tent that allows the photographer to be invisible for animals.

The floating blind however has an advantage compared to a hiding blind set up on land: it is mobile. The photographer wearing long boots arriving to the chest waders can push the floating blind as he walks in the marsh.

The only constraint is that the water level can never exceed the armpits of the photographer. Indeed, there is nothing worse than having water in waders.

First advantage: get close to the water animals

The first advantage of the floating blind is to allow the photographer to approach closer water birds, insects such as dragonflies or water mammals like nutria.

Water birds are very afraid of any human presence from the banks: it is a potential danger. The floating blind is quite tolerated by most water animals. The photographer has just to softly approach without brutality and without making a sound. The floating blind is a shelter that totally masks human parts such as hands, face which are synonymous with danger for water animals. Only the front of the lens exceeds the tent.

For many birds like the purple heron, there is an invisible safety zone beyond which the floating blind becomes a potential danger. If that line is crossed then the bird then chooses to fly to escape.

The floating blind also allows the photographer to explore areas inaccessible by the banks, just if the water level is not too high. A photographer may then observe very well night herons, egrets and other birds hidden in the trees.

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The second advantage: unique shooting perspective

For us, photographing animals with unique perspective is the main advantage of this photographic technique. The photographer is able to create from the surface of the water giving the audience the impression to be in the scene. The photographs do not have the effect of bird's eye view of photos taken from the bank. Contact with the eyes of animals is direct, giving a major impact to photographs.


« This workshop showed me the importance of light and setting. I have felt this in the past, but I had never managed to express it before. Amar helped me discover it. His approach completely changed my mind. Now photography is much clearer to me. »

Using a floating blind is easy

Learning to use a floating blind is very fast and easy. A photographer just needs a few minutes. The entrance is from the back. Once the ball placed on the dedicated screws, simply set the lens and then begin to move.

Water is a real danger to the camera equipment. A degree of caution is required when entering inside the tent but nothing too difficult.

The only real enemy of the floating blind is the wind. It is almost impossible to fight against a strong wind. If the wind blows inside the tent, it is impossible to maintain it on the water.

Creating beautiful pictures with water animals

If you already have some experience with photography and you want to improve your technique on very particular points, then this trip is perfect for your needs. Since the number of participants that we take is limited, you are guaranteed to learn the specific information you want.

This trip is not only an adventure that you will share with other photographers. It is also a time during which you can ask any technical questions you want to address. At the end of the workshop, you will leave with an improved photographic approach.

Every day, we will review everyone’s photos. In addition to giving tips for improvement, we will provide technical presentations on topics that the participants are interested in.

Participating in this photography trip with us is the best way to meet other photographers who love the beauties of nature while learning new skills in a pleasant, relaxing environment. You will enjoy this holiday where you can exchange your inspirations, impressions, and technical insights with other photographers who share your interests.

The places we will go have been selected to meet the unique needs of wildlife photographers. This is the advantage of a trip organized by photographers. We are familiar with the area where we will take you. The sites we have chosen are gorgeous. The wildlife is fabulous, the landscapes are unique. It will be a delight for anyone who loves nature's beauties.


« This workshop on wildlife photography using floating blinds was very well organized and innovative. It was an opportunity for me to continue my quest for photographic inspiration. The technical explanations were simple and clear. The food was excellent. The lights that bathe the area are beautiful. This is a photography workshop that I would take again as soon as possible. »

A perfect mix of holiday and learning experience

Participating in a wildlife photography trip with us is the best way to meet other photographers who also love the beauties of nature while learning new techniques in a pleasant, relaxing environment. You will enjoy this holiday where you can exchange your inspirations, impressions and technical insights with like-minded photographers.

Philip C.

« I really enjoyed this wildlife photography workshop. The atmosphere and location were new to me, even though I have already participated in numerous wildlife photography trips. I have traveled to many different places, but this time it was totally different. It was very surprising to discover the beautiful lights and magical environment of La Dombes. »


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Photography Workshops Dedicated to Nature Enthusiasts


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Amar and Isabelle Guillen. Professional Photographers of nature.

Isabelle and Amar Guillen are two photographers specializing in underwater, wildlife, and landscape photography. In 1987, their photographic adventure began while they both prepared for a degree in computer engineering. The visual beauty offered by the sumptuous surrounding landscapes and the wildlife held within began (and continues) to be their source of inspiration. This has led them to entirely devote themselves to a professional photographic career, allowing them to share their contemplative and artistic interpretation of nature. For the last fifteen years, they have photographed both the animals and their terrestrial and underwater natural landscapes. Their photographic scenes are animated by the infinite mysteries hidden in nature.
Through their photographic gaze of nature, they strive to highlight the importance of its conservation. Isabelle and Amar live and exhibit between France and the United States, both of which supply wildlife, landscapes, and cultures, providing inspiration for the Guillen's work. Isabelle and Amar have published several books including "Lights and Colors of the Charente-Maritime Coast", "Reflections of Haute-Saintonge", and "The Secrets of Underwater Photography ".