When I completed Strobist as a project in 2021, I promised to check back in when I had something worth sharing. Today, I’m announcing my new book, The Traveling Photographer’s Manifesto, which seeks to do for traveling photographers what Strobist always tried to do for lighting photographers.

Thanks for giving it a look—and for your comments and feedback.

Strobist Turns One

One year ago tonight, I posted the first reference to a new experiment of a lighting blog, Strobist, on a photo message board. What began as a little online notebook to keep track of my thoughts on small-flash lighting has grown into something way beyond what I ever expected.

Through March of 2006, I put together much of the Lighting 101 posts, and a couple of On Assignments. Actually, I made pretty good time because I was home sick for a several days during the month. And in checking my grammar and spelling on those early posts (not great under the best of circumstances) it should not surprise you to find out that much of it was written under the influence of drugs.

Hey, if Edgar Allen Poe can write on opium and booze, I can do it on Thera-Flu.

On April 5th of 2006, I was in Ocean City, Maryland on an assignment to follow the Miss USA contestants. The pageant was to be held soon in Baltimore, and they assigned me to follow around the whole herd of unnaturally perky gals for a couple of weeks.

Tough job, to be sure. But someone had to do it.

Late at night, I sat down in my hotel room with my laptop and a slowish cell phone internet connection and made the first-ever mentions of Strobist on a couple of photo message boards. After a month of cranking out posts, I felt like I had enough to light this thing up and see if it would fizz. Pathetically, I back-dated my first post to February 28 because the thought of having just March and April in the archives list looked so newb.

The year that has gone by since has left me totally dumbfounded at what has happened with the site. I have watched as a whole community has formed around the idea of cool light from cheap little flashes. I have seen so many people grow their creativity and skills - and meet other like-minded photographers.

I have been gratified to see people with little-to-no previous flash skills blossom into kickass lighting photographers. And every month brings more and more people into our little nonexclusive lighting geek club.

My own skills and creative thought processes have grown significantly as a result of being at the receiving and of so many great ideas from so many different readers. Ideas are the rare commodity in this business, and I find that I have far too many to try at any given time. And that totally rocks.

Most of all, I have enjoyed meeting so many people - both online and in person - and hearing so many stories about how discovering light has changed their photography for the better. That makes me feel great.

I have no idea what the future may hold, or how long I can keep up the harried pace of shooting full time and driving this sometimes out-of-control train. But I can tell you I plan to keep going and to see where it takes us. So far it has been too interesting to stop.

Thanks for a wonderful, caffeine-laced, sleep-deprived mind-expanding year. I cannot wait to see what the next year brings.

And because I know you too well, click here for the lighting dope.


New to Strobist? Start here | Or jump right to Lighting 101
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