New eBook Release - Simulating Sunlight

Today I would like to announce the official launch of the second eBook in my Lighting Field Guide series. This one is a bit different than the first one. It's a bit more technical and it uses a strobe. I have made some changes and improvements since publishing a guide to window light but before I discuss those I want to tell all of you exactly what this field guide is about. If you just want it now - grab it here.

This lighting field guide is about using one strobe in a unique and attractive way that is a little off the beaten path. Specifically using one speedlight to simulate sunlight in various ways. It's not about a particular strobe or speedlight in terms of what buttons to push that cause a specific auto-magic mode to function - there are enough of those to go around. This guide is about using one light creatively. Not just the how but the why. Along the way it is also a crash course in location and studio lighting techniques in disguise, using a minimum of gear.

In fact 99% of all photographers, even casual photographers will have or can improvise all of the gear requiered in this eBook. When I started this lighting guide I chucked everything I have ever learned about the topic into the images I planned on using to illustrate the topics. A bad thing happened. The essential topics and concepts got lost in a sea of fine-tuning details and worse - all of the images needed a boat load of gear. I scrapped that and went back to the drawing board with an absolute minimalistic approach. I'm happy with how it ended up but this is just part I. Part II will be aimed at fine tuning and issues of scale. Probably only one percent of people will have any interest. Part I is for everyone.

I did send out a few of the final drafts to pro photographers that I respect in order to get some of their impressions. Always a scary thing with something that you put a lot of work into. I was shocked with the feedback that I received. In fact I am amazed. So much so that I decided to leave well enough alone and put it out there foregoing some of my notes on revisions I planned to make. Here is one comment that I will not attribute because I didn't ask if it was okay…

… I love this new book. You do an amazing job of shining the spotlight (!) on light itself, you have the knowledge to back it up and it all comes through loud and clear. I just think this is all very, very inspiring. I love the topic and I love the execution… Anonymous Pro Photographer

Specifically I left a few things in that I had planned to remove which makes it a bit bigger than last time. About 70+ pages. The meat is still the same but I also included a few things based on emails and suggestions from the last lighting field guide.

  • A list of all the gear I used
  • A few more casual diagrams - I don't like overly technical diagrams they imply that things are too fixed and exacting.
  • A list of the specific VSCO presets and recipes used for illustrations.
  • Some histograms to illustrate specifically what exposures look like as a standard reference point.

Okay enough promotion. Just grab a copy. I promise you that there will be more than one thing that you will just love no matter whether you have been using strobes for a decade or you have just decided to start figuring them out. As with the last lighting eBook the download contains both a crazy high resolution PDF as well as an iBooks version for the iPad that does all the nice iBook tricks based on landscape or portrait orientation etc.


Ps. The shot at the top was shot while it was snowing like crazy outside. Dark and dismal. I actually had to cancel two other sessions that afternoon because everyone was suck at home.

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