Paul C. Buff, the Man Behind White Lightning, AlienBees and Einstein Flashes, Dies at Age 78.

Mar 24, 2015

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

Paul C. Buff, the Man Behind White Lightning, AlienBees and Einstein Flashes, Dies at Age 78.

Mar 24, 2015

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

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Buff, through a company carrying his name, has been creating studio flashes since 1981 when he introduced the game-changing White Lightning flash.

In 2001, realizing the potential of the digital photography revolution and the changing market, he started selling the smaller, cheaper and friendlier AlienBees Flashes.

His most recent flash unit, the Einstein E640, has also been a huge success and it used by amateurs and professionals alike.

Another well known invention belonging to Buff, who is said to have reigned over 60% of the U.S. studio flash market at one point, is the Vagabond line of portable power systems.

The news of his death was posted on the company website, along with the following message:

“With great sadness we announce that our founder, Paul C. Buff, passed away this week at the age of 78. He has been living with his beloved wife of 16 years, Deborah, and their extended family in their secondary home in Mobile, Alabama for over a year and passed away in this home with his family around him. Those of us who have had the pleasure of knowing and working with Paul have lost an invaluable mentor, an inspiring leader, and a treasured friend. The world has lost one of its most creative and adventurous pioneers.

In the coming weeks, we will celebrate Paul’s unique and extraordinary life, giving customers, employees, and friends the opportunity to share their tributes and memories. But first, we must take time to pause and grieve the loss of a man who had such a great impact on us all. If you wish to offer condolences in the mean time, we invite you to email them to CelebratingPaul@paulcbuff.com.

For years, it has been our mission to advance Paul C. Buff, Inc. in the spirit of innovation and originality upon which it was founded. With gratitude for everything that Paul has taught us, we honor his memory by continuing to serve our customers with the outstanding products, support, and Golden Rule standards that he initiated”.

I didn’t know a thing about Buff at the time, but the first studio flash I used was one of his AlienBees strobes back in 2006.

Despite Buff’s products being known mainly in North America, photographers all over the world have been enjoying them. One example is Jaroslav Wieczorkiewicz who used Einstein E640 flashes for his Splash Heroes project.

[via Resource Magazine]

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Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

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2 responses to “Paul C. Buff, the Man Behind White Lightning, AlienBees and Einstein Flashes, Dies at Age 78.”

  1. Sean Davis Avatar
    Sean Davis

    Rest in peace you revolutionary man.

  2. fahfah Avatar
    fahfah

    I have been a fan of Paul’s and a purchaser of his products since the
    Valley People Gain Brain/Kepex (1980) audio days to my Alien Bees,
    PLM’s, and countless modifiers and accessories today. He was doing the
    same thing in the Pro Audio industry in the 70’s & 80’s as he was in
    the Photo business now. It is extremely sad to see one of the last of
    that breed leave us. His innovation, marketing and customer service
    philosophies aren’t shared by many in this day and age. He will be
    sorely missed.