I was asked by the Nevada Humane Society to be the photographer for their annual "Santa Paws" event, where people can bring their pets in for a photo with Santa. Santa was awesome - he starts growing his hair and beard in the summer just to be ready to play Santa at Christmas. They set up a tree and some presents, and a big chair for Santa. People started lining up before 10:00, and it was absolutely non-stop until 4:30. Santa and I got a 15 minute break to eat a sandwich, and there was a line of people and pets the whole day. I'd like to share a few highlights:
People were great - they dressed up their pets:
This little girl donated her tooth fairy money to the Humane Society:
One lady brought in her SIX Yorkies in a baby stroller - they were all dressed for the occasion, down to the bows in their hair..
Some of the pets really liked to pose for the camera...
We saw mostly dogs, but there were some cats, and one family even brought in three cats. This one was very festive:
This was a cute little dog, wearing a dress….
Followed by the biggest dog I've ever seen in my life - a 155 pound Great Pyrenees belonging to the Humane Society Director's executive assistant:
One lady brought in four dachshunds, that were very interested in the cats….
We had some really big family groups - lots of people, lots of pets...
And we ended the day with these darling kittens that had just come out of the foster program:
At the end of the day, we had photographed 110 "families" with Santa, taken over 1100 photos. It was a long weekend post-processing, and most people got their photos in a few days. I was exhausted!
Some lessons learned for next year: need a bigger, wider backdrop, need something on the floor (the green and orange tiles just didn't work…) and hopefully be able to light it a little differently. But all in all, a huge success, and for me, a huge learning experience.