Thursday, June 17, 2010
370 miles and a photo shoot in six hours!
Today I packed up the dogs and made a whirlwind trip to Minneapolis for an audition. Unlike the last photo shoot, which was an open casting call, this was an audition for an actual job. I didn't get the particulars, but it sounds like it is for Target and it involves wearing clothes.
They were very particular about the breeds they were interested in, and Border Collies were on their list. They were also looking for Labradors, so I figured I may as well let Luke have a try. Unfortunately, his solid black color just doesn't photograph very well. Of course, Alaskan Klee Kai were not on the list because nobody has heard of them, but Kaiser came to educate them about his wonderful breed.
We left home around 7:30 a.m. and thankfully the dogs were still in sleep mode. They all traveled quietly until about 15-20 minutes prior to reaching our destination. It seems that when we leave the freeway, they all figure out that something is up!
We arrived to the photo studio around 10:30 and I went inside to check in. The atmosphere was SO much different than at the open casting call. There were only two other dogs there at the time and it was dead silent. I filled out the paperwork, set up the pop-up pen and went out to potty the dogs. Before I had even come inside with them, the photographer was looking for us, as it was our turn!
So much for beautifying anyone. I ran a brush through Secret's hair to fix the windblown look she'd acquired on the trip up, wiped the gook out of her eyes, grabbed the toy bag and went to the photo set.
They wanted all of the auditioning dogs to wear the stock shirts they had brought with them. It didn't matter what the dog's ACTUAL size was, they had to fit into the stock size for their breed. Secret most definitely would have looked better in a size larger, but she did fit into the size they provided for Border Collies. Good thing she's such a skinny girl.
She didn't get to show off her fun tricks this time. She had to stand right & left in the the shirt to get profile shots (we did each side because of her split face) and then she got a few more pictures naked, both standing and sitting. I thought she did remarkably well -- far, far better than the last photo shoot when the atmosphere was so insane. She stood like a ROCK, which impressed me to no end since it's not exactly a behavior we've practiced much, especially with me at a distance.
Secret made a very good impression, I think. They were concerned about her tail and the fact that she wasn't "wagging" it during the shoot. They are looking for a "happy" dog and apparently that means a wagging tail. Barbara (the photographer) explained that she was simply holding her tail naturally, but that if necessary they could photoshop the tail into a higher position. I probably could have gotten her to be more "active" with her tail if I could have put her through her paces, but the whole thing was very sterile and businesslike, so I didn't even bring it up.
We should know by tomorrow if they are interested in using Secret for their campaign. The actual photo shoot takes place on Monday. It would be super cool if she was chosen, but I'm not getting my hopes up too high. Secret certainly doesn't have the "classic" Border Collie look and she pretty much filled up the stock size shirt she had to wear. lol There were two Border Collies there prior to us, but I know for sure they had no interest in the one before us because comments were made about how scared that dog was (in contrast to how comfortable Secret seemed).
Kaiser didn't get to wear a shirt, but he did get his picture taken. Now that these folks have heard of the Alaskan Klee Kai, maybe they'll consider using him for a future project. They were very curious about him and Kaiser was absolutely an angel on set. I really couldn't have asked for more from him and he was a great ambassador for his breed.
Luke BARELY squeezed into the shirt they had available for Labradors, but we made it work. He did a super job at "looking happy" and made a good impression on everyone. Unfortunately he's got that whole "black thing" going against him, but Barbara said she could do a lot to lighten the photos and bring out his face.
All told, we were there only about 30-40 minutes before we packed back into the car to make the trip home. I can't believe that the experience was that tiring, but all three dogs zonked out again until we stopped in Rochester for gas. Then they all mauled me while I ate lunch, then crashed again until we arrived at work. What good travelers I have.
Secret's agility training this week, as limited as it's been, has been FANTASTIC. The rear cross has really started to click with her and she's been getting in more training time with toys than ever (before moving on to food). Yesterday was one of her longest work sessions ever, simply because she stayed so motivated. She's really changing as she gets older, and all for the positive. :o)
The photos in the blog today are courtesy of Barbara O'Brien -- They are from the open casting call we went to in April and were recently posted on the web!