Thursday, May 20, 2010

Behind The Lens: Kathie Ostgulen

Imagine the person who, as soon as she opens her mouth, leaves you clutching your middle, bursting with laughter. The oh my god, I'm going to pee my pants kind of laughter. That is Kathie. I met her online and in real life at Disneyworld last year. I didn't need to see any attractions, listening to Kathie tell stories was entertainment enough! She paints amazing tales with her words and with her camera. 

When I was writing Get Me Off of Auto, I asked her to be part of the team. I wanted her spectacular photos to show off the steps in the book. I had no idea, she was shooting in Auto modes. What gorgeous results she was achieving! I asked to feature her in a special Behind The Lens, focusing on the wonderful photographers who contributed to the book. Kathie is the first of the three.

Her answers left me in tears. I'm so pleased to share her with you! 

What do you enjoy most about photography?
There is so much that i love about photography.  Of course there is the aspect of preserving memories, but it really goes so much further than that.  I think of a photograph as a gift,  the gift of a moment that can never be relived any other way, a special way to rewind your life!  There is also the joy of taking a great photo, a constant learning and challenging of yourself.  An extra special perk of photography are the relationships that you develop with others who share your passion....they get you!

I would never been able to get this shot on auto...the chapter on shooting in the manual mode helped me achieve this.

 How has your photography changed since Get Me Off of Auto?
Quite simply GMOA has changed my photography 180 degrees.  Before Katrina asked me to be a part of this project I was shooting 99.999% in the auto mode.  The few times I ventured out, I either took a photo that was completely black or white.  I read so many books and blogs about the exposure ISO, Aperture and Shutter Speed come together to take the right photo.  I might as well have been reading a book written in a foreign language, I just couldn't put it all together.  GMOA made it so easy....for once there was someone (Katrina) who was speaking to me in a language I understood.  I went from auto to manual and have never turned back, I now shoot 90% in the manual mode with a little aperture or shutter priority mode thrown in when the situation calls for it, and I know what mode to use as the situation arises.  That still amazes me!!

Thanks to Katrina's chapter on shutter priority mode I was able to capture this camera shy squirrel as he bolted.

What camera and lenses do you have in your bag? Which do you use most? Why?
I shoot with a Nikon D90, in my bag I have:
   Nikkor 50mm f/1.4
   Nikkor 60mm f/2.8 Micro  (macro lens)
   Nikkor 70-200 f/2.8
   Nikkor 18-200 f/3.5-5.6

Lately I have been using my 60mm f/2.8 macro lens.  By the time I felt comfortable off of the auto mode, winter had set in where I live, which means most of my shooting has been indoors just practicing taking photos of the things around my house and of course my dogs.  Each spring I work about six weeks at a local greenhouse designing containers and that lens is perfect for taking flower photos.  I am looking forward to getting out with my 70-200 this spring/summer.

I have never been able to shoot and attain a true black background.   I can honestly say that GMOA allowed me to get this shot, one of my favorites so far.

  What is the strangest thing you've photographed? 
I don't know how strange this is, but I love this photo.  I was taking shots of some daffodils that my mom brought me and noticed that i loved how the stems looked in the bottom of a beer glass that i used as a vase.

Where do you keep your camera when you aren't shooting?
It is always handy.  I used to keep it in my camera bag in the closet, but noticed that I was missing too many shots.  I now just keep it on the sofa table in my livingroom with batteries charged!

After reading the chapter on Aperture Priority mode I was able to get just the right DOF I wanted for this photo of all that sugary goodness!!

What editing/organizing software do you use?
I use Adobe's Photoshop CS2, Photoshop Elements 3 and Lightroom 2.  So excited for the release of CS5!!  

It took me three years and Katrina's book to be able to take a photo of a red rose that actually looked red.  In all previous attempts the rose was either black or hot pink!!  I was thrilled when that happened, this was taken in the manual mode.

I love Kathie's photos! You can see even more of her work in her flickr pool and at DesignerDigitals. Don't miss Buddy, he is perhaps, the cutest dog ever! (Sorry Bear.)

I'm feeling generous. Pop over to Kathie's photos or scrapbook pages, leave a comment here about your favorite Kathie photo or page and I'll pick one lucky winner for a spot in Your Life: Captured Through The Lens. Post your comment by midnight, May 22nd. I'll post the winner on May 23rd.

Class starts on May 26th!

Have I helped you with a classebook, or tutorial? Would you like to be featured Behind The Lens? Send me an email at katrina at katrinakennedy dot com.


Christi said...

Wow! Her photos are stunning. My favorite is the white flowers with the black background. Beautiful.

jillconyers said...

So many wonderful shots! My favorite (one of many) is the cupcake shot. Love the simplicity and colors.

Cate said...

Wow! Gorgeous photos! I love the cow (or is it a bull?) drinking in the stream surrounded by snow (the snow covered fence posts are spot on in my book, too)

Kate said...

Such wonderful photos - I want mine to be be like that! It's difficult to choose a favourite but one of the ones that stands out for me is the kitchen whisk. I love the monochrome effect, the patterns involved, it's simplicity and the great focus and clarity.
Kate Fortune

Anonymous said...

Amazing photos -- all of them! My favorites are her snow pictures. The detail she has in the white snow is great. I want to be able to do that! The one of the steer(?) drinking by the stream is my favorite. The contrast is just gorgeous!

Ari Vega-Macias said...

i LOVE the cow/bull/animal with horns. she just NAILED that one:)

Joey M said...

I LOVE Kathie's 365 pages as each picture seems SO perfect!

mugsbigsis said...

Oh, so fun to read your interview of Kathie, Katrina. Kathie is an inspiration to me with her many wonderful photos and her outlook on life.

mugsbigsis said...
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