Photography

Portrait

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It has been a long time since I have blogged and my Year End Statistics are lame. I used to blog every day, time to get back on the horse! 🙂  2013 was a Roller Coaster of a year for me due to rapidly changing circumstances – perhaps I will discuss at some later time, but not today. Day One 2014 is one for reflection and watching Hockey!

I would simply like to post some pictures of all the wonderful people whom I have met and gotten to know as friends. (Hopefully I don’t miss anyone, and if so please chastise me with a comment or two).  They are, for the most part,  Artists with their own special talents, troubles, turmoil, but as I have noticed, always positive, smiling and happy (at least when I am Photographing them). So I will write a brief note for each…no particular order, I am not that organized! 🙂

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This is Crystal Montes – she is a trooper, runs through mud, climbs anything and likes to make goofy faces!

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Dani Kovache introduced me to many wonderful people this year, set up a bunch of fun projects – thanks D

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Chary from Temptress Fashion – Thanks Temptress for inviting me to all the special events – always fun

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Felina Vie – first real photo shoot with her – it got a bit nuts with the Voodoo Theme 😉 Thanks May for the Makeup work and Daniela too!

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Carmel – always willing to try new things, and is an exceptional Burlesque Artist

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Lady Borgia – A Temptress Fashion Model, Burlesque Artist and just good people

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Eva Mae – a True Southern Belle

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Erica Joleen – mysterious creature “Nevermore” 🙂

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Veronica from Ramona – her first time doing pin-up, how exciting!

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Melanie Monsters – Gave up a lucrative career as a Shrink, Classical Pianist, plays in a Ska Band, Pinup Model…its all about the Music for her *meow meow* 😉

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Caitanya Cook – yes she can hot wire a car!

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Remele Sparks and Josie Bunny – creatives that will set you back on your heals 🙂 …with 150 lbs of Organic Carrots as props and hours of body painting preparation!

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Catherine Madinger – always scheming about new Projects and a fine Lady from Riverside

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Dean LeCrone – Chauffer, Creator of Doc Smith Comics and one tough fella – he was so hot in this  outfit with temperatures in the high 90s that there were pools of sweat on the ground!

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Chewie – RIP my Friend 🙂

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Simone Strauss – meticulous self preparation for any project

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Gia LaDolce – wowza, a Spanish Doll from SoCal, and her Mom is awesome!

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Kitty Von Rose – always smiling and happy

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Sandy Summers never needs direction unless you ask her to use a prop that does not make any sense, like a huge spanner to fix a car

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Jean – mysterious and strange animal 🙂

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Carrol Morrow – legs! Also really fun!

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Megan Martine – Model and Ex US Marine …Semper Fi!

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And me, Erik Kerstenbeck, Owner of Kerstenbeck Photographic Art from Ramona California, which is close to San Diego. I am an Army of One. I don’t have a Production Crew, Marketing Manager, Sales Team, Social Media Machine and yet I seem to get along just fine. Always learning from peers and like-minded people.

Remarkable things have happened in 2013 and I feel like I am on the cusp of something really special (More details later, don’t want to jinx it)

Thanks so much for the kind visit to my Blog and wish all a healthly, prosperous and Stellar 2014…Erik 🙂


Pushing Buttons

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We’ve all had our buttons pushed to the point where we feel we can’t take it any more, and chances are, we’ve all pushed somebody else’s buttons, with or without knowing it. The button pusher may not be conscious of what they’re doing, but in the end the buttons belong to us, and we are the ones who must deal with what comes up. The more we take responsibility for our own feelings and reactions, the less tender these buttons will be.

We’ve all had the experience of having someone snap at us, seemingly out of nowhere. This happens when we unconsciously push a button in someone else we didn’t even know was there. This can happen with a complete stranger and sometimes with a person we’ve known and been close to for years. We ourselves may have a relationship with someone whose buttons we secretly like to push. Buttons are just soft spots that have been touched one too many times, and they symbolize some pain that needs to be acknowledged and healed. This may be a wound from childhood, or some recent trauma, that we haven’t adequately tended. Whatever the case, when our buttons get pushed, the person who most needs our attention and caring is us, and blaming the button pusher only distracts us from finding a true resolution to our suffering.


Creative Anxiety

Anxiety is a feature of the human condition. Period. It is a much larger feature than most people realize and we all spend inordinate amounts of time in order to reduce our experience of anxiety or in order to avoid anxiety altogether. Our very human defensiveness is one of the primary ways that we try to avoid experiencing anxiety. If something is about to make us anxious we deny that it is happening, make ourselves sick so that we can concentrate on our sickness, get angry at our mate so as to have something else to focus on, and so on. We are very clever creatures in this regard.

We are also very resourceful creatures who have it in us to create. “Creativity” is the word we use for our desire to make use of our inner resources, employ our imagination, our thoughts and our feelings into beautiful things like songs, photographs, paintings, literature and feel like the hero of our own story. It is the way that we make manifest our potential, make use of our intelligence, and embrace what we love. When we create, we feel whole, useful, and devoted. Unfortunately, we often also feel anxious as we create or contemplate creating. There are many reasons for this. We get anxious because we fear we may fail, because we fear we may disappoint ourselves, because the work can be extremely hard, because the marketplace may criticize us and reject us, and so on. We want to create, because that is a wonderful thing, but we also don’t want to create, so as to spare ourselves all this anxiety. That is the simple, profound dilemma.

Since both creating and not creating produce anxiety in a person who wants to create, you might as well embrace the fact that anxiety will accompany you on your journey as a creative person—whether or not you are getting on with your work. Just embracing that reality will release a lot of the ambient anxiety that you feel. Since anxiety accompanies both states—both creating and not creating—why not choose creating? Pick your next creative project  with a new willingness to accept the reality of anxiety. To help reduce your experience of anxiety, remember to breathe deeply, speak positively to yourself, and affirm that your creative life matters to you. If some anxiety remains, create anyway!

If you enjoyed this image, please have a visit to http://www.kerstenbeck.com where we have a wealth of cool Portrait, Landscape and Travel images from all over!


Vampires Among Us

 

Of course Vampires are mythological or folkloric beings who subsist by feeding on the life essence (generally in the form of blood) of living creatures, regardless of whether they are undead or a living person/being. This year, we decided to play a bit on this theme with the help of some wonderful models at a photo shoot in Riverside, California. The stage was the historical downtown area and at an old church. Now why Vampires would like to be there is beyond reason! We found that Vampires come in many shapes and colors like this one blow from Russia, having a tasty Cigar after a good feeding!

Hello, Comrade!

Sometimes, they are Vampire Brides, left wanting at the altar!

 

Teaching the young the tricks of the trade!

 

Or Just dropping in for a quick snack!

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Lighting in outdoors shoots needs to be effective and portable. For most of these scenarios we used a Quantum Q-Flash as Key and an old Vivitar V285 as fill (dropped many times and still kicking). Some light modifiers helped, like a diffuser in front of the Q-Flash. We tend to think of this as Guerilla Lighting. Many on location Photographers used studio strobes, portable batteries and huge beauty lights on rolling stands. This is something perhaps we can do, but in the mean time, basics work just fine until we hone our talents to a new level.

Hope you enjoyed our Halloween Set and have a visit to Kerstenbeck Photographic Art to check out some of our other Projects, maybe even purchase a Print or Digital Download!

 


Our “Birthgifts”

Truly wonderful, the mind of a Child is ….”Yoda”

The power to discover our true voice lies in the limitless potential that was given to us at birth. Here the seeds of greatness were sown. We were blessed with magnificent “Birthgifts”, such as talents, intelligences, opportunities, capacities, privileges that would remain largely unopened except through our own decisions. The potential within each of us is  tremendous, if not infinite – we really do not know what we truly are capable of.

All children are born geniuses – only a child sees things with perfect clarity, because it hasn’t developed all those filters which prevent us from seeing things we don’t expect to see. A baby may be the most frail and dependent creation in the universe, yet within a few short year, becomes the most powerful. The more we exercise our given talents, the more talents were are given and with that, our capacity just keeps growing.

 


Red Part 3 – MCAS Miramar

This is another shot from MCAS Miramar taken in hard mid-day sun using our trusty Nikon D7000 equipped with a 17-70mm f2.8 lens, Quantum Q-Flash and hot shoe mounted metering system. Given the intensity of the light, we chose a location where one of the Museum vintage aircraft was under a canopy. This was the ultimate diffuser! Almost all other Photographers gravitated to this location, some packing some serious gear!

During the morning, we met a clothing designer who wanted to promote his line of hats, tops, bottoms. He gave us a few items which we took to this Photoshoot at the Aviation Museum. Our model had on a different outfit (recall previous posts) and when we asked if she could try these new items, she was more than happy. She disappeared behind a trailer and emerged with a new look. We noticed that traffic along Miramar Rd slowed for some reason during the change of outfits! Hmmm.

Thanks for the kind visit to our humble blog – please drop us a note contact@kerstenbeck.com if you have any comments or questions!

Kathleen and Erik

PS if you are curious regarding the clothing designer, check out his work on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/Pernicious.Attire


MCAS Miramar – Eyes Front and Center!

This continues our series of shots from a special event at MCAS Miramar from a while back. We were experimenting with our bracket mounted Quantum T5d-R Flash, trusty Nikon D7000 and new Sigma 17-70mm f2.8 lens. This combination allows one to shoot in hard light. What one does is to exposed for the background then under expose it just a bit. The subject would then be totally under exposed with a typical setup. A problem that can be fixed and effectively!

The Q-Flash can be adjusted through it’s TTL, or Through the Lens, control system to bring the subject into proper exposure. This flash is more powerful than a camera mounted Speedlight and approaches Studio Power. The flash controller which sits on the camera Hot Shoe, meters the light in conjunction with the Nikon D7000 and allows incremental adjustments of Fill Light by simply turning a small switch. Additionally, the flash has a “Distance Limiter” which if set to say, 10 ft, would allow all objects beyond this range to not have light from the flash. Mounting the D7000 on a Flash Bracket puts all this gear into a nice portable package. It also comes with a Turbo-3 Battery pack which one mounts to one’s belt, that the flash and camera can plug into – great for at least 3 hours of hard work! This battery rocks!

Here, Jodi, the model, was instructed to lie under the wing of a vintage plane to get out of the hard 1PM light in San Diego. Background was exposed to get a hint of planes and then we filled her in with the Quantum on the flash bracket. The bracket itself allows one to pull the flash out around 2.5ft…perfect for a bit of side light. We had her dip her Aviators just a bit to capture her eye as the focal point.

Thank you for your kind visit to our humble blog and if you have ANY questions just Comment on The Blog or drop us a note at contact@kerstenbeck.com We answer every and all questions! (Please feel free to subscribe, we present Photographic Gems almost every day)

Kindest Regards, Kathleen and Erik