From time to time, we get to see DIY photography ideas that are so funny, yet so brilliant. Using a beer helmet as a speedlight holder is definitely one of them. A Japanese photographer who goes by the nickname @nishihiro0312 uses this cheap party helmet to light his images, and he mounts speedlights and even diffusers onto it.
I’ve not quite decided yet whether the Chroma Chrono is genius or a gimmick. It’s an interesting idea, a programmable RGB camera flash capable of putting out, apparently, 16 million colours. But is it really all that useful or practical?
Possibly not surprisingly, the Chroma Chrono is currently being funded through Kickstarter. I can see it either becoming wildly successful, or it’ll be another one of those items you buy, use once, and then forget about in a drawer.
Just when we thought softboxes had been designed and redesigned to death, MagMod comes along to set the record straight. Today the company has introduced the world to their new “revolutionary” MagBox magnetic softbox. Designed primarily for speedlights, it actually looks pretty cool – and quite different to softboxes we’ve seen before.
The product is being funded through Kickstarter where they’ve already annihilated their $100,000 goal in just a couple of hours. It currently sits at $187K, with almost 2 months left to go. I think it’s safe to say there’s a lot of excited MagMod customers out there.-
The hähnel Modus 600RT speedlight for Canon, Nikon, Sony and Fuji has proven to be fairly popular. Not quite as popular as Godox, perhaps, but popular enough that hähnel have seen fit to release one for Olympus and Panasonic Micro Four Thirds systems, too.
As is the trend these days, the Modus 600RT is a lithium-ion battery powered flash. And as such, it boasts longer life and faster recycle times than traditional AA powered speedlights. It supports TTL, High Speed Sync, repeat flash and full manual control. But is it worth $250?
Canon has announced a shiny new speedlight. The Canon 470EX-AI. It contains a new feature that’s apparently supposed to make life easier for those who use on-camera flash, but I’m really not entirely sure why. That feature is a new motorised head which allows the flash to re-orient its head when you “double half press” the shutter button. Call me cynical, but this seems to be a solution looking for a problem.
In his previous tutorial, Malaysian photographer Andrew Boey showed you why a white wall is the only backdrop you’ll ever need. After turning white to black, in his latest tutorial, he teaches you to get all kinds of vibrant colors from a plain white wall. You don’t need a backdrop or Photoshop, but some speedlights, light modifiers and color gels.
As some of you already know, I recently developed and released a brand new lighting workshop called Creatively Simple Lighting. In that workshop, one of the core foundations of what I teach is how to get creative with simple lighting and simple lighting doesn’t get any simpler than when you use Speedlights. At their most basic, Speedlights can simply sit on top of your camera and illuminate whatever is in front of you. If you want to get a little more creative however, the first thing to do is to get that flash off your camera and step into the vast world of off-camera flash.
Off-camera flash is where it gets interesting and it’s very easy to throw a cheap softbox on your speedlight and take some pleasant yet fairly basic shots. So how do we make it a little more engaging without spending a fortune? Well, as part of my workshop I wanted to prove that all the setups I was teaching could be achieved with a couple of Speedlights and some very basic modifiers. The following article is the result of me dusting off my Speedlights and playing with some homemade modifiers to see if I could create some engaging and creative effects without it costing me a penny.
The flash market used to be rather simple. You go to one company for speedlights, usually your camera manufacturer or a specialist brand like Metz. Then, you go to another company, such as Bowens and Elinchrom, for strobes when you needed more power. The strobe market stayed largely stable, but then Yongnuo came along and upset the speedlight scene quite drastically.
Last night, as I was in bed, browsing Facebook on my iPad, as you do, I ran across a post over on Flash Havoc. Described as “something of an open letter to Yongnuo”, I thought it seemed to hit the mark pretty well on many points. So, here’s some of my own thoughts.
David Hobby is the man who started off the whole strobist movement. He literally is the Strobist. It’s been a while since we’ve seen him on video, and he took a bit of a break from the site for a while, too. He is now back, with a new free Lighting 103 course, focusing on colour.
The Phoblographer caught up with David recently at the Fujifilm Festival in New York City. Naturally, out came the camera, for David to impart some of his wisdom. Specifically, it’s aimed at those thinking about, or looking into getting their first flash.
The Profoto A1 speedlight we told you about a few days ago is now official. And yes, it’s just as expensive as we expected. At $995 buyers will have a pretty high level of expectation from this little flash. But it looks like it will stand up to the job just fine, and fits nicely into the existing Profoto ecosystem.
It looks to be about what you’d expect from a speedlight made by Profoto. But, what’s particularly interesting about it, is the shape of the head. But not only the shape, it appears to essentially have its own built in MagMod style accessory system. This review from photographer Neil van Niekerk walks us through the unit, its specs, features and capabilities.