Friday, September 23, 2016


I had the pleasure of working with the Fonville Family recently. Sharlena (the beautiful lady in the pink scarf below) contacted me about taking family portraits of her family and also wanted to include her parents and her grandmother.  I was so excited because I love doing generational portraits! These types of portraits have so much meaning - especially as we get older and our loved ones leave us.

As with all of my portrait sessions, Sharlena and I started planning their perfect photo session.  I asked if they would like to do a landscape style session with trees and tall grasses or one that was more urban with an industrial feel.  She wanted something different, so we went urban and chose Taylors Mill (Taylors, SC) as the venue.  It could not have been a more perfect day or place for their session!

I had so much fun with this family!  And while I am only showcasing a handful of images in this post, the selected images do not tell the story of what went on behind the scenes.  There was lots of laughter (Sharlena's dad is a hoot!), giggles and smiles.  Their little girls were beyond adorable and were dancing and having the best time.  We even took a coffee and cocoa break at Due South Coffee (located in the Mill).

I hope you enjoy their family portraits - I know I enjoyed taking them! And can I just say, I really hope my hair is as awesome as Sharlena's grandmother's is when I am her age.  She is one stylish lady!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016


It has been so long since I last blogged.  I hate to admit it, but this is my least favorite thing to do.  I feel like I never quite know what to say about how a session went.  I also don't like saying the same generic comments over and over again.  So what do I do?  I don't blog like I should.  I think it is time to remedy that.    

My first photography session in Greenville was with the handsome and charismatic, Ben Toledo.  He was everything I could have hoped for in a first time session in a new area.  Ben is not only good looking and ripped, he is also very funny, creative and was open to trying anything.  We did some shooting at The Taylors Mill in Taylors, SC - what a gorgeous industrial area that is being revitalized!  Then we hopped on over to Downtwon Greenville for some more poses and ideas.  We finished up the shoot at my place in Simpsonville (the first image below is in my backyard).

I hope you enjoy viewing some of the images we created together.  It was a lot of fun!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Greenville Photographer | Movin' On Up...Or Rather Down

For those of you who do not know already, I have relocated...again.  Carsten Photography is now located in beautiful Greenville, SC.  This is my 3rd relocation and 4th start since I started Carsten Photography in 2006.

When I began my business, I was located in the Dayton, Ohio region.  This is my home base - where I, my husband, and our children are from. Our children are actually the reason I started my business. I won't bore you to tears with the full background, as I believe there is a post about my start somewhere in the archives.  Once I started becoming established and gaining clientele (you'll notice a pattern with this!), my family relocated in 2008 to the Tri-Cities in Washington State.

I truly loved being in Washington!  Not only was it great for my family, it is also where I truly started growing as an artist - expanding my services to include high school seniors and real estate photography. My business was really growing, particularly in real estate work, when my husband was offered a job in Michigan.   We were in the Tri for 3 years - 2008 to 2011.

What can I say about Michigan?  I thought I would hate it - I loved it!  I thought I would not re-start my business again - I flourished the most here!  I thought I would only focus on family photography if I did restart - Senior and Real Estate photography are what I predominantly did and what I preferred.  I landed real estate clients like Pulte Homes and even did photos for their national campaign they do with Zillow.  I was published in creative magazine, Limme.  And I was the photographer for the Miss Farmington Pageant (pageant photography wasn't even on my radar!).  I had even gotten to the point where clients sought me out, rather than me chasing leads.  Business was great and I loved every minute of it!!!  I should have known change was on the horizon when most of my days were filled with shoots and my business was doing well. My husband was offered an opportunity in South Carolina that we could not turn away from.  And so....

Here I am Greenville!  I have not officially started back up yet, as I am still trying to get my family settled into our new home and routine.  I have even considered not re-starting.  But what would I do?  This is what I love.  This is what I'm meant to do.  I'd be lying if I said I wasn't scared.  It seems that every time I become established, we relocate.  This, in itself, has been very frustrating.  But when I look back at my journey, as a photographer, and see what all I have gained (friends and experiences) that I would not normally have, it's hard not to want to continue.

So if you're in the Greenville area and are in need of a photographer - I am here and happy to work with you!

Monday, February 16, 2015

South Lyon Photographer | Social Media Portraits for Professionals

I have recently had a lot of inquiries from clients wanting to have headshots done for professional networking sites, like LinkedIn.  Social media services, such as LinkedIn or BranchOut, have many benefits for the modern professional - keep in contact with old colleagues and friends, create new connections with others in your field, market yourself to prospective employers.

Your profile acts as your online resume; allowing potential employers to view your education, career history and skill set.  This is why it is so important to have a professional image for your profile - it allows an employer to put a face with the name.  Would you arrive to an interview dressed in sweats and sneakers?  No.  You would put for the effort in dressing nice and presenting yourself in a professional manner.  You should treat your profile with the same courtesy and take the time to upload a professional image versus a selfie taken with your cell phone.  Your image does make a difference and says a lot about your character and work ethic.

Professional head shots can be used for more than just social networking.  Here are a few additional things you can use your professional headshots for:

•  Use your image on your business cards
•  Strengthen your image or brand on your marketing materials
•  Create a profile page on your website
•  Add it to your email signature
•  Personalize your CV or resume
•  Update your image on the company directory
•  Attach your image to any articles you write
•  Include your image in corporate brochures
•  Political Campaigns - anything requiring an election
•  Press releases to the local press
•  Dating profiles - Match, eHarmony, etc.

Because the demand for this type of portrait session is increasing, I am now offering a "Social Media Portraits for Professionals" session.  This type of session is $75.00 (for a limited time) and will include up to 3 web-ready digital files of your choosing.  Sessions are held either indoor or outdoor (both if done at one general location). And clothing changes (up to 2 outfits) are optional.

Contact me today to book your session! | email {at} or telephone {at} 248.491.8388.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

South Lyon Family Photographer | 2015 Daddy Daughter Dance

Last Friday, my daughter awoke with as much excitement as she does on Christmas morning.  She burst into my bedroom, jumped onto the bed and exclaimed, "Mommy!  Do you know what day it is?! It's my date night with daddy!"  This is our second year participating in the Daddy Daughter Dance and we make it a big deal for our little girl.  She gets the whole princess treatment!  After all, this is little girl prom and her date is her one true knight in shining armor - Daddy!

Fast forward to the end of the school day and the kids are just getting home.  I quickly help my daughter change into a button down shirt, grab a snack and then whisk her away to her hair appointment at the salon.  We arrive at CO Reutter, in South Lyon, and Brittany starts creating a beautiful masterpiece fit for a little princess.  We return home, and I lightly apply some make-up to my daughter's already perfect face (only because she says she wants to feel beautiful and who am I to say no? I refuse to leave the house without applying at least some eyebrow pencil and mascara!).  Then I help her carefully slip into her dress, tights and ballet flats. Of course you know what comes next...paparazzi mommy!  I would be a poor excuse of a photographer if I did not capture sweet moments, like this, of my own family.  My husband presents our daughter with a beautiful corsage that compliments her dress and then whisks her off for their special "date night" dinner; followed by dancing to songs like "My Girl" and "Gangnam Style".  The two of them came home a few hours later, my daughter bursting at the seams to tell me all the details of their evening.  I am so happy for her. I absolutely love that she gets to have these memories forever.

What did I do while she and my husband were gone?  Having my own date night with my favorite little man, my son!  We dined on the finest foods Taco Bell has to offer.  Then came home and battled zombies and creepers on Minecraft.  Ending our evening with cherry pie ala mode for dessert.  I would say "Date Night" was a success for all!

If you are interested in booking a family portrait session with Carsten Photography, please contact me vie email {at} or by phone {at} 248.491.8388

Thursday, January 15, 2015

South Lyon Senior Photographer | 2016 Senior Model Casting Call


Are you or someone you know a soon to be 2016 Senior?  Carsten Photography is looking for senior models to represent our studio for 2016.  Free sessions, rep cards and a chance to earn cash are just a few of the benefits to being a senior model.  The deadline is March 31st, so be sure to get your applications in as soon as possible.

Click on HERE to apply today!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Detroit Real Estate Photographer | 349 Nairn Circle

Sometimes I truly can not believe my luck with the properties I get to photograph.  There are no words that can accurately describe how amazing this home is!  You need to look at this property I did just this week - 349 Nairn Circle.  This home is among my top 5 favorites I have ever photographed.

This home features brazillian cherry hardwood floors throughout the main level, a gourmet kitchen, amazing views of the golf course, each bedroom has an en suite, and did I mention the amazing wall of windows?!  I love everything about this home!  I know I have said that I have no interest in moving again, but I might have to make an exception for this home.

If you are interested in using professional images in your real estate marketing, please contact me via email {at} or by phone {at} 248.491.8388