Jean Guichard spent most of his school holidays at his Breton grandparents' house, in the Morbihan area of Brittany, France. He was motivated by travel and photography at a young age. It was in Greenland that he acquired his first Nikon, which he financed through the photographs he sold to the crew during his military obligations.He later entered the public relations department of the Ministère de l'Industrie, where he was responsible for supervising the ministers' travel. It was there that he learned the techniques of photojournalism.In 1977 he joined the Sygma agency as a photojournalist. He produced many reports on political personalities, sporting events, international news, and political conflicts.After a stint at the Gamma agency, he created the GLMR agency with some colleagues, where he began his long-term project on lighthouses.