In early 1989 I was an established photographer married to a photographer with whom I had a child, our son Maxim, and I found myself at a party of mostly established colleagues on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. As one would expect at a party full of photographers, everybody was taking pictures. My friend Ethan Hoffman was snapping away along with the others, but I noticed something different about him. He moved with great ease and used his on-camera strobe* with confidence. I walked over to Ethan, complimented him on his grace, and confessed that, even with my years of experience, I lacked any understanding and self-assurance when using a strobe. I had to admit that I had never taken a successful image with a strobe. Sage-like ...

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