Puyo, Robert Demachy, and Paul de Singly with Model
Charles Puyo studied at the École Polytechnique.
After studies Charles Puyo joined the French Army as an artillery officer, rising to the rank of commandant during his career, and commanding a squadron at the School of Artillery at La Fère. He served with the French Army in Algeria during the 1880s.
In 1896, Charles Puyo published his first book, Notes sur la Photographie Artistique, which explained how photography could be used to create works of art.
Following his retirement from the military in 1902, Charles Puyo was able to devote himself more fully to photography. In an effort to achieve greater artistic effects, Charles Puyo and the Photo Club experimented with gum bichromate and oil pigment processes and developed special soft-focus lenses that achieved impressionistic effects. He wrote or co-wrote several books for the club during this period describing these processes in detail.
Using the gum-bichromate process and oil transfer, Charles Puyo was a pictorialist. He produced images of graceful, feminine women as well as landscapes and street scenes. His photographs appeared in numerous publications worldwide and were exhibited at various expositions in the 1900s.