My career as an artist started in Laguna Beach, California while attending Laguna Beach School of Art and Design. During this time I was fortunate to have found some very talented and inspirational artists who generously mentored me; they introduced me to epoxy resins and pigments very unconventional materials that became the foundation of my future career. The applications I learned opened the door to endless possibilities. After Art school I formed a company in Los Angeles called Carstens Functional Art forms designing and manufacturing highly-customized furniture for some of the very best hospitality design firms in the U.S.; for 15 years I worked on over 200 projects and shipped my functional art to projects all over the world. Manufacturing provided a need for large studio spaces with countless tools and materials allowing me to explore my artwork with very few limitations as far as size and mediums are concerned; I was also able to continue my work as a fine artist. In 1987 I moved from Los Angeles to Scottsdale, Arizona to further my career as a fine artist doing shows throughout the West and Southwest. Through the years I have produced several different series of art: some very primitive like ““Legends”” which is a study of pictographs and the way some of the very first artists on this planet expressed themselves, to a very contemporary series called "Presence in a Void” using black hi-gloss epoxy resin as my canvas. Most of my work has a textural relief as I love the dimensional quality of sculpting the surface. I have shown in galleries from New York to Seattle and I’ve been fortunate to have sold works to several large banking corporations as well as individuals all over the world. Because I’ve worked in the hospitality Trade a large number of my works were purchased directly from my Art company. My most recent works like “Alchemy” and Ghost Cactus are a natural evolution for me. My New Works are Abstract textural relief paintings using Acrylic, Lacquer and Oil paints. The texture is the story of each of my paintings. The colors are the emotion of telling the story. Within these New Works, there are some very intense color combinations and incredible detail.
Simultaneously through the years, I have also been a commercial interior designer. My specialty has been restaurants and still is; I have completed hospitality projects from Washington D.C. to Beverly Hills. I see designing restaurants as 3-D sculpture with people inside having a great time.