David Hobby has come clean and admitted that he's never used a burning bush as a light source—or, more precisely, there's no kosher speedlight standard involved in being a Strobist.
(Amateurs are often surprised by how limited the technical knowledge of some famous and successful photographers can be sometimes. It's not that they don't know technique—far from it. They learn what they need to know to do their own work, and they know their own technique backwards and forwards, inside and out. But they feel no compulsion to learn other photographers' techniques. Garry Winogrand probably never used a 300mm lens in his life; Ansel Adams was said by his friends to have had no color sense, based on the clashing clothing he'd wear to parties; and most of Richard Avedon's iconic portraits weren't made with studio lighting at all—they were made with white background paper set up outdoors in open shade (see Laura Wilson's Avedon at Work for chapter and verse). I wouldn't be surprised if John Sexton has never shot a halfway serious digital image, but he can talk about every last subtle nuance of the technique of developing sheet film in JOBO Expert drums. I once worked for a top D.C. studio pro who had more money invested in studio lighting than most people have in their homes, but who didn't own, and didn't know how to use, the kind of flash you clip on to the hot shoe of a hand camera.)
Anyway, David has just published Part I of an article about monolights. Take a walk around the monobloc with him. And not to worry—as he explains, no immutable laws of Strobism are being broken.
Featured Comment by Jim Richardson: "By extension, most really successful photographers use a rather limited palette of compositional motifs as well. Taken together these 'limitations' have another name: style. Much of what we call photographic style comes from the very creative application of just a handful of techniques and motifs. Finding that subset that works for you is never easy, so developing a style is never so easy as just being technically lazy. Perhaps it is just that photographers with a strong style have decided (long ago) which stuff to throw away."
Featured Comment by Gordon Lewis: "To put Jim Richardson's comment another way, the photographer who attempts to know everything there is to know about all aspects of photographic technique becomes the 'jack of all trades, master of none.' The more narrow and deep your technical focus (so to speak) the more likely you are to approach or even attain mastery of it."
Featured Comment by Tod Papageorge: "While your general point is well-taken, the fact is that, when he made his living doing commercial work, Garry Winogrand carried around a Nikon with a 300mm lens in his car to take pictures of those sunsets he considered possible (LP) record covers. There's a Beethoven's Ninth somewhere so illustrated."