Department profile

Study photography in Prague!
FAMU – Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague / Department of Photography

Lažanský palác

The specialised Department of Photography was formed at FAMU in 1975 and it is one of the oldest schools of its type in Europe. It offers a three-year Bachelor’s programme and the subsequent two-year Master’s programme, both taught in the Czech and English languages. Studies take place in six principal studios led by major photographers and contemporary artists in general – the Studio of Documentary Photography, the Studio of Imaginative Photography, the Studio of Intermedia, the Studio of Classic Photography, the Studio of New Aesthetic, the Studio of Conservation and Restoration Photography. Students get to know a wide range of techniques for the production and postproduction of photographic images, learn and understand their opportunities and limitations, and find and invent creative means corresponding to their own intentions and preferences. In addition, the opportunities for gaining experience at other FAMU departments (cinematography, editing, sound engineering etc.) during the studies fosters overlaps into the audiovisual field. Courses in the history and theory of photography and media are an integral part of the teaching.


FAMU is the fifth oldest film school in the world. Its graduates include many influential filmmakers and scriptwriters, many of whom are known internationally as Oscar winners and laureates of international film festivals. The Department of Photography was founded in 1975 which makes it one of the oldest institutions of its kind in Europe. The school is located right in the historical centre of Prague. Our unique specialization is the interconnection of classical photography techniques with contemporary multi-media trends.

BA Student Profile

The graduates of the Bachelor’s Degree programme in Photography are thoroughly acquainted with all forms of photography and the photographic process which they have perfectly mastered and which they develop in their work. During their studies, they get familiar with related disciplines of visual art such as new media or graphic design. They are securely oriented in the field of theory and history of photography and art and are aware of the context they use in their artistic and professional projects. They work as photographers, creative workers, image editors, leaders of photography and creative courses. They are ready for the follow-up Master’s Degree studies in photography or visual art. They are awarded the BcA title (Bachelor of Arts). 

Year 1: During the 1st semester students attend the Traditional Photography Studio where they become acquainted with the traditional photographic process. Examples of the work are here. At the same time, they work, based on a theme, on their creative exhibition projects.
Practical lessons are supplemented by the basics of photographic chemistry, basics of optics, basics of graphic design and basics of reflection of the creative process.
In the field of theory and history, they are acquainted with the development of fine art.
Year 1: In the 2nd semester, the students can move to one of five specialized studios where they develop their work, realize their intentions, work on common studio assignments or tasks. They further expand their photography skills in the subjects of landscape and architecture photography. Examples of the work are here. In the area of photography techniques, students can choose from a number of thematic modules. Examples of the work are here.
In other subjects, whose composition is identical to that in the first semester, they deepen their knowledge gained in the previous cycle.

Year 2 is focused on the development of realization of their own artistic intentions and themes and on instructions in the area of photographic genres. Students acquire and expand their knowledge and skills in photographic representation of portraits and figures, in work with light in both studio and natural conditions, in basics of documentation, documentary photography and they work as photographers in a film crew.
Examples of the work are here.

Year 3 is focused on preparations for the realization and on subsequent realization of the Bachelor’s thesis. In the first semester, the students can also draw on experience during a scholarship at another school under the Erasmus programme; a list of the schools is here.
The study programme is supported by teaching new media in the field of video processing and 3D modelling. In the field of theory and history, students examine a chosen topic which ends, in the second semester, with a Bachelor’s thesis whose topic is in the field of theory.
Throughout their studies, they have the opportunity to attend specialized workshops and modules, both in theory and practical thematic teaching.

Graduates of the follow-up Master’s Programme in Photography are complex and independent creative personalities and potentially successful visual artists. They have mastered the knowledge, skills and competences, thanks to which they are capable of independent and team creative work, reflection of their own work, critical thinking in relation to various forms and ways of using a wide range of media, especially photography and technical images. They can approach visual art and visual culture from a theoretical, historical, technological, social, and philosophical perspective. In addition to developing their talent and acquiring further knowledge and skills, the students refine their awareness of the role of the artist in society, deepen their attitudes and opinions that are based on the humanistic viewpoint, they are pro-actively interested in the pressing issues of the contemporary world and society, creating platforms to help address such issues or joining such platforms. Based on the understanding of the existing systems, they look for positions from which systems can be reflected and changed.

MA Student Profile

The Master’s programme is intended for the best selected graduates of the Bachelor’s programme at FAMU or another tertiary art school. The graduates of the Master’s programme are expected to create high quality original work pursuing new approaches and contributions to the development of photography in a chosen area, based on a combination of theory and practical work. The MgA. degree is bestowed on students who create and defend a Master’s graduation set of art works, a pictorial publication and write a theoretical thesis as well as pass a state examination in the history and theory of photography.


The Department of Photography offers a Bachelor Program, a Master’s Program and a Academy Preparation Program (APP) in Photography in the English language. The BA Photography program is open to students without academic background in photography. Students studying in the English language have the opportunity to participate in lectures in the English language in the FAMU International Program. The students also have the possibility to work in the studios led by renowned teachers. These studios include the Studio of Documentary Photography,Studio of Imaginative Photography, Studio of New Aesthetic, Studio of Intermedia, Studio of Classical Photography and Studio of Conservation and Restoration Photography

History and Theory of Photography, Art and Visual Culture:

Courses in history and theory of photography, film, art and visual culture represent an important part of the study of photography at the Department of Photography (“DoP”), FAMU. Lectures and seminars mainly serve the purposes of putting things in context and strengthening students’ creative practice; they teach critical thinking, research practices, and the basics of handling academic texts in the fields of humanities and social sciences. In addition to instruction provided by DoP’s key teachers, focusing primarily on the history and the present of technical images, students can attend also other courses at FAMU that are focused mainly on the history of Czech and world cinematography and culture.


  • Studio Tabletop is equipped with Sinar type large-format cameras with a film format of up to 1824 cm, including digital alternatives.
  • Studio for life photography has a flash lighting system with above standard power of 12 000 Ws; it has a Hasselblad camera with a digital back, and an analogue camera Mamiya RB 67 with a set of interchangeable lenses.
  • Studio “Portrait and Figure” offers similar equipment as above and the possibility to create an endless background.
  • Computer room and a room for scanning films (negatives and positives) are available in the school. For more demanding work there is the scanner Hasselblad Flextight x5.
  • The out of Prague studio in Beroun enables students to focus on their work for several days, providing on-site accommodation facilities. It offers studios equipped for large and medium formats and two darkrooms.
    We are also preparing a classical studio with daylight, which will have an 1824 cm camera. 

Lectures, Workshops: 

At the Department of Photography we put an emphasis on individual development of the artists. The study includes art and photography history courses, philosophical seminars, practical seminars and workshops with renowned artists. Students also gain experience in the graphical workshop and screen print studio. They also learn the art of bookbinding and production of photographic publications. Multimedia instruction is an integral part of our teaching.

Culture Life:

An integral part of the school character is the interconnection with the dynamic cultural life in Prague. The school has its own gallery in the centre of Prague. The gallery has a rich program of student exhibitions. We assist international students in the integration into the regular gallery activities in Prague, which means they often participate in exhibitions in renowned galleries. A unique benefit is our interconnection with the FAMU film department in areas such as direction, camera and editing. Together with our students, we regularly participate in important European festivals of photography. Within the scope of our programs we cooperate with photography and film schools all over the world.


Start: September 2024
Language: English
Deadline for applications: June 1st, 2024
All applications must include a portfolio.


MgA. Veronika Čechmánková – department assistant
Department of Photography
Smetanovo nabř. 2
110 00 Praha 1
Czech Republic
Tel: +420 234 244 317

For specific questions about the admission process please contact:

MgA. Barbora Stejskalová (International Programme Coordinator)