Geisha Studio

(10 customer reviews)

¥180,000Private Tour

This tour is just for you and anyone you'd like to bring along. The price is a flat fee!

Times are in Asia/Tokyo

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  • Choose a date above to see available times.

Hotel pick-up *

We will pick you up at your hotel. Please let us know when you are staying.

Hotel name

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Gift Card

Have any questions? Contact us!

Cancellation Policy

100% refunded if you cancel 2 months before the workshop date. No refund past that date.

Adventure Type

Private Photo Workshop

Max Party Size

4 people


3 Hours






• Hotel Pickup
• Interpreter
• Lighting Equipment
• Professional photo instructor
• Shoot Location Rental
• Time with geisha


• Camera
• Hotel drop-off

Minimum Required Gear

• DSLR or mirrorless camera capable of manual modes
• 18-55mm zoom lens (on crop sensor) or similar prime lenses
• 24-70mm zoom lens (on full frame) or similar prime lenses
• No tripod needed




Geisha Studio - Photography Workshop — EYExplore
Geisha Studio – Photography Workshop — EYExplore

What’s the Story?

You find yourself in a Japanese tea house with an adjoining garden. The serenity gradually gives way to excitement as the moment draws near when a lovely Maiko, an apprentice Geisha, will arrive. Gracing us with her beauty, we spring into action as pro photographers in our very own studio—capture the elegance and charm of a Maiko.

What We’ll Shoot

You will learn how to set up lighting and work with natural light in a traditional environment that presents various challenges as well as benefits for a photoshoot. You will also be coached on posing your subject, a lovely Maiko, in order to convey emotion and express a narrative beyond mere portraiture.

Where We’ll Explore

Our shoot takes place in a historical house in the heart of Kyoto, known as Chionsha. The house has been in the hands of the same family for over 100 years, and its heritage shows in the elegant and weathered structure. The house makes for an excellent setting for our subject, who herself is a bridge between the traditional past and our modern present. We will a find a stimulating variety of shot concepts throughout Chionsha and use them to convey the beauty and elegance of our geisha.

How Does it Work?

  • 13:00 Pickup at your hotel
  • 13:15 – 14:00 Prepare the shooting location and get prepared for the shoot
  • 14:00 – 14:30 Meet the geisha and get to know her with casual chat
  • 14:30 – 16:00 Photoshoot with the geisha
  • 16:15 Finish

Instructors for this Photo Adventure

10 reviews for Geisha Studio

  1. rileyralph

    The Geisha Studio photo workshop in Kyoto was a fun and unique experience. Paul with EYExplore was an excellent teacher and provided many helpful tips, ideas and advice on how to get the best photos during the shoot. I had the opportunity to photograph a lovely Maiko named Masane and she was truly a delight to meet and work with. I was able to photograph her in many different scenarios and poses, some were Paul’s suggestions but they also allowed me to use some ideas of my own. Once Masane arrived I first had the opportunity to talk with her and get to know a little bit about her. Once the photo session started it seemed to go by quickly but I was able to get some great shots. The Geisha Studio was truly a memorable experience and definitely the highlight of my trip to Japan.

  2. MariosForsos

    I came to EYExplore with very exacting and high demands for a very specific shoot and Lukasz and the team came through in the best way possible! Timely communication (even considering the time difference), detailed answers and information, quick updates leading, ultimately, to a very productive shoot and some amazing images. I am really looking forward to repeating this (with some changes) in the near future.

  3. Dream644028

    Second time that I’ve used EYExplore because they provide a unique experience that truly is second to none. They really do help you achieve your vision while offering the personal level of assistance that you need, while also curing you in to things you may not even notice. It may seem a pricey choice but it is the sort of experience you just can’t get with your typical “geisha dinner” or staged performance.

  4. shirleytay123

    I was in Kyoto for 3 days and one of the afternoon was dedicated to a photoshoot with a Maiko (an apprentice training to be a Geisha). I had a good session as the Maiko was accommodating and just before the actual session Lukasz showed me some possible photo ideas. This was especially good because my time with the Maiko was limited. After looking at the photos I’ve taken, I wished the lighting was better. There are some unflattering shadows on her face despite her being only 18 years old. Overall the session was good.

  5. 545andyw

    My experience photographing a lovely Maiko of Gion Higashi in a 150-year-old Kyoto farmhouse was absolutely the most inspiring and exciting photography experience I’ve had. Eyexplore’s guide, Paul Crouse, was superb as a photography guide, expertly preparing the scene, briefing me on what to expect and helping with camera settings, lighting and model posing, all the while allowing me to realize my own creativity and have a truly great photographic experience. This was my first time working with true Geiko (Maikos or Geishas) in a studio-type setting. Our Maiko, Masanao, was breathtakingly stunning in her beauty, poise, style, charm and overall manner. She was a joy to work with. Though pricey, I would do a Behind the Mask experience again for the rush of creative energy this authentic Japanese aesthetic experience offers. EYExplore does it right. I cannot recommend this tour highly enough.

  6. 7safaak

    This team was incredible. Before I left Los Angeles, the communication was very fast, they always responded to my emails right away. They were able to pick me up from my hotel and take me to the photo session location. The location was fantastic and so were the Geishas I photographed. I highly recommend this company. I would work with them again for sure. Especial thanks to Paul who assisted me and made sure all went well.

  7. Louise M

    I had a great afternoon with Axel photographing Masano, a maiko. I was able to get to know her and build up a rapport before starting to photograph her. I enjoyed taking photographs and Axel’s knowledge in helping me get some great photos.

  8. Travelwhippet

    I had a great experience with Axel photographing a Maiko (Geisha apprentice). The shooting venue at a tea house associated with the Kyoto Museum is excellent.

    I had a few poses and shots in mind beforehand, and Axel was able to provide us with great ideas as well. I used mostly natural light, but was also able to get a few nice high-contrast shots with the LED that popped as well.

    Axel provided the right balance of instruction – letting me execute my unique vision but having some great pointers and ideas for poses as well.

    Apparently, you never know which Maiko you will get, and I was lucky enough to get one that spoke some English (very good English at that). Getting to know her story was awesome.

    Overall a great experience, and one that is truly memorable and unique.

  9. macrophoto2014

    My review is divided. It was an amazing experience to meet a Maiko, to spend time talking to her and getting to know her, and to be able to photograph her. However, I was disappointed that, although the workshop advertises the use of studio lighting, these were not used or available. The only light available was a small LED light which created many shadows on the subject. I do have to thank the organizers for purchasing a red umbrella which we used for some wonderful photos.

    EYExplore Reply:
    Thank you very much for your honest and direct review. We greatly appreciate such feedback as it helps us improve our service. We also take any dissatisfaction very seriously and will strive to improve this aspect of our workshop. In this case, we (the management, Lukasz & Axel) feel that we let down both yourself and the instructor who was leading the workshop on that day. Perhaps due to overconfidence in the instructor’s skill, it seems we did not provide the instructor with enough training on how to use the gear/lighting at hand to ensure fantastic results. Though we do not provide large studio lights, the provided LEDs, reflectors, and diffusers can achieve a beautiful result. However, the instructor simply did not utilize the provided equipment or the available natural light to their fullest extent. To remedy this, we are now in the process of ensuring that he is fully trained on all aspects of this workshop thanks to your invaluable feedback. We take full responsibility for the shortcomings on this workshop and will be strive to provide a complete photographic experience at all times.

  10. dingo1963

    Meeting a geisha one-on-one was a surreal experience. Having Axel as our guide/translator and photographic guru was awesome. The time we spent with Hinayu discussing her life and photographing her was a once in a lifetime experience. We try to do a photo tour whenever we visit a new city, and highly recommend this workshop if you have an afternoon to spare in Kyoto.

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