eBook review — Craft and Vision’s Making Light 2: Advanced Use of Off-Camera Flash

MakingLight2_Cover_MEDIUM_thumbnail.pngYou may recall that two months back, I reviewed a book called Making Light: An Introduction to Off-Camera Flash. Well, as you may have guessed, it was just the first of two books by Piet Van Den Eynde.

Today, the Craft and Vision folks released the second volume in the series, called (logically enough) Making Light 2: Advanced Use of Off-Camera Flash. $5 gets you 77 double-width pages of useful material in handy PDF form (read it on your computer, or iPad, or whatever…).

Let’s go through this eBook section by section so you can see if it’d be of use to you:


A warm welcome to this book, with a quick reminder of topics in the first volume.

1 More Advanced Techniques

1.1 Going Beyond Sync Speed

An explanation of High Speed Sync, with some examples of how it’s useful in non-traditional situations (i.e., not just for high-speed action, but for daylight fill too). A brief mention of PocketWizard “HyperSync” technology, and its usefulness on Canon and Nikon cameras (as with the first book, unfortunately Piet doesn’t venture beyond the “big two” camera manufacturers in this title).

1.2 Working with Multiple Flashes

In this section, Piet briefly discusses using multiple flashes for more control, essentially a quick follow-on to the first book’s lighting set-up discussion. He also discusses using multiple flashes for more power, hinting at the material on strobes that’s to follow. This section is also easily applicable to all camera brands that provide for off-camera remote-controlled flash (not just Nikon and Canon).

2 Gear

2.1 Advanced Triggering Systems

More information on the latest PocketWizard goodies and a brief mention of some upcoming competitors (this section will age quickly), with another reminder of the utility and financial practicality of optical slaves.

2.2 More Modifiers

This section is a bit of a hodgepodge, but does bring up some useful gear (with links to the manufacturer pages). Softboxes, baffles for them, grids, snoots, flags, beauty dishes, portable backgrounds — they all get their turn here, if only briefly.

2.3 Thinking Outside the Softbox

A quick discussion of non-intuitive ways to use a softbox, modifiers you can make for one, etc.

2.4 More Useful Stuff

Another grab-bag gear section — quick treatments of gels, brackets, clamps, loupes, luggage.

2.5 Outgrowing Your Small Flashes

High-power strobes, and when you want to use them. A quick mention, and probably appropriately so — this technology changes quickly as vendors come up with new goodies for photographers.

3 Ten Case Studies

Just for fun, Piet actually has eleven case studies in this section (“…it goes to eleven!”) that makes up nearly a third of the book. For each case study, Piet shows you the final image, then follows up with extensive behind-the-scenes “making of” essays and additional images showing setups. In the process, he has examples for the use of pretty much all the gear he mentioned earlier in the book. Meanwhile, it’s pretty much camera-brand-agnostic.


4 Four Interviews

Almost an extension of the case studies, this section takes up just shy of the last third of the book, and consists of four interviews with fellow Belgian photographers. Along with the actual interviews, this section includes even case study style examples, tips on the business of photography, links to sites that the photographers recommend, and of course, links to the photographers’ blogs and social media accounts.


A quick 1-page wrap-up, with thanks and acknowledgements.

So, all-in-all a solid offering — particularly valuable for the case studies and interviews that make up the majority of the eBook’s material.