She was praised by her fans as having a wholesome, girlish appeal. Her critics, however, were more vocal. They criticized her lack of proper voice training, stemming from an incident in which judge Randy Jackson likened her performance to a sheep; in her performances, Carmen had had trouble controlling her natural vibrato.
As the only contestant in the second series under the age of eighteen, she had to spend three hours a day with an on-set tutor. Her mother had to accompany her with the other contestants to the special American Idol house, where they all lived during the competition.
In addition to releasing singles of her music, Rasmusen made her acting debut in 2003 in the feature film Pride and Prejudice: A Latter-day Comedy as Charlotte. She appears in another film now in post-production.