One thing that irritates me about trying to do fancy "strobist"-style shooting with shoe-mount portable flash units is the Mickey Mouse way you have to attach modifiers to them. Compared to the generally simple, rugged mounting systems used on studio flash units, the various rubber band/hook-and-loop/tape systems are just annoying.
But yesterday I found a Bowens mount flange that I previously had scavenged off a burned-out flash head we had at our office studio, went out into the garage, and made this:
...which lets me do this:
...which in turn allows me to do stuff like this:
Better yet, when I have to do a portable-flash shot at work, now I won't have to lug along a completely separate set of modifiers -- I can just use the same stuff we have in the studio for the AC-powered system.
The main annoyance is that since I only had one dead Bowens head, I could only make one of these. Why doesn't some third-party manufacturer make this kind of adapter/bracket to fit accessories from a variety of popular studio flash systems? (Alien Bees, Bowens, Elinchrom, Photogenic, whatever...)
I've got a more comprehensive rant about this, plus a few construction details, on my blog.