Can you introduce yourself briefly?
Nicolas ASSAEL, 34, lived in St Hilaire du Touvet since childhood, I fell into paragliding when I was 9. After 8 years of training slopes I did my beginners course at 17. I am world champion of nothing, but I love everything in paragliding: hike and fly, cross country, coastal soaring, freestyle, morning flights, evening flights, night flights, flying in all shapes and forms.
What were the milestones in your learning photography?
I think the most important is to love looking at photos and to feed yourself on that. Since I was a kid my room was papered with paragliding posters. I have never taken a photography course. I’m self-taught. I probably took blurred photos with a throwaway camera during school trips but I always wanted to progress and do better. So I read a lot of books on photographic technique. And above all I took photos.
When did you get interested in paragliding photography and especially aerobatic paragliding?
My childhood posters I cut out of the magazines of the time (PPM, Vol Libre, Parapente Mag, Aérial, XC Mag…) They were signed Xavier Murillo, Jacques-Paul Stéfani, Uli Wiesmeier, Ulrich Grill, Martin Scheel. Now I adore the work of Tristan Shu. He creates very beautiful images with a lot of thought.
Who are the photographers that inspire you?
What equipment do you use?
My back pack holds an Eos 7D and a few lenses such as a10-22, a 50, a 100, a 24-105, and a 100-400.
Do you have a memory of a shoot that you would like to share with us?
They are all different. They are all good memories. Even when it goes wrong, they become good memories. It’s not acro, but last year I covered the X-Alps for Sup’Air, and the diversity of the landscapes from Austria through to Monaco made this adventure definitely one of the best. Beyond the shoot itself, it’s the human contacts that make the memories sublime.
Have you specific tips or advice for taking pictures of aerobatic paragliding?
The most important thing, in my humble opinion, is to love paragliding and to fly yourself. A good photo is an image that carries sensations. You therefore need to know how to translate to a fixed image all the dynamics of a figure, and thus the key moment of that figure which isn’t necessarily the one you’d think.
You’re a photographer primarily of outdoor activities. Can you tell us of the special relationship that you have with these activities?
I remain convinced that it is necessary to love doing these activities in order to take beautiful photos. You take beautiful pictures when you feel the frustration of not taking part instead of taking photos.
What are your plans or ideas for 2016?
2016 is a bit special. I have just had my first child and I’m going to pass a lot of time with him because that’s worth all the gold in the world. But photography remains anchored in me and I continue doing it. But the projects are there and we’ll speak about them when they are realized.
The final word
I want to go flying.
Internet links, website or specific gallery:
Presentation - Présentation
Competitors Room -
Pratical info -
Disclaimer - Mentions légales
Contact: Flore Magnier contact(at)wpac-annecy-2016.com