• Bret

Musician Feature—Steve and Kristi Nebel

Updated: Nov 7, 2019

Musicians Steve and Kristi Nebel have been playing music together for decades and play all around the Pacific Northwest. They are a wonderful couple and really pleasant musicians to be around.



Several weeks ago I set up to take some portraits with Steve and Kristi. After some discussion on where would be a good place to take portraits of their duo we eventually decided that something with the Pudget Sound in the background would be ideal.


We decided to take photos at the newly opened Dune Peninsula in Tacoma.


As it so often is in Tacoma, the day started out overcast, great for some photos, and I was hoping it would stay this way. But by the time I met the Nebels at 9 A.M. the clouds were already breaking up.


We tried one or two locations at the park without quite getting the portraits we wanted.


Right when we got the ideal spot, however, the sun came out. We waited for a few minutes but it was obvious the sun was not going to be on our side.


So we went for two backup plans.



The first was to get a nice backlit shot along one of the park's paths that showed some of the greenery of the area. This made for a fun portrait with lighting and scenery I think really matches the feeling of their musical duo.

The other photo location that worked for us was in the shadow cast by one of the few buildings in the park.



The cement wall allowed for a smooth backdrop with even lighting while the bright area outside of the shadow illuminated Steve and Kristi.


While I generally don’t like to use a lot of editing on my photos I edited the background of this photo a little more than I usually do.


While the cement wall makes a nice background, it has large holes in it that are somewhat distracting. Conveniently they were easily removable and so I went ahead and did so.


Unedited Wall

Edited Wall

It's a subtle difference, but an important one I think.


This music portrait session didn’t quite go as planned as far as lighting and weather went, but to me, it’s a good example of making something work by using the resources that were around. Overall I’m happy with how things worked out and it was great to work with Steve and Kristi.

© Bret Stein Photography

Tacoma, Washington