McGraw Photography Blog » Charlotte, NC | Pet & Dog Photography

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2014 Pet Palooza

Saturday’s gorgeous weather sure did help bring the masses out to Pet Palooza at Independence Park! The largest fundraiser for the Humane Society of Charlotte, Pet Palooza is chock full of fun activities for both dogs and their people…a 2K dog walk, bands, contests, food trucks, a beer garden, vendor fair, microchipping, palm and paw readings, face painting, agility trials, a fido fashion show…the list goes on and on!

I’m so glad I got to be a part of this awesome event! As usual, the HSC staff and volunteers worked their bums off to put on a flawless event that raised over $90,000!!! These funds help HSC provide critical services like low-cost spay/neuter, vaccine and microchip clinics, adoptions, and owner/pet training and education. **UPDATE** HSC has now raised over $116,000 and the final numbers are still to come!!!

Here is a recap of the event as well as some of my favorite images from the day’s activities. If you’d like to see more, please check out the link HERE.

The foundation of Pet Palooza is the 2K dog walk. It starts the event off with a bang while taking the participants on a nice stroll around the perimeter of Independence Park. I got to be right in the middle of the action… ;)
Humane Society of Charlotte Fundraiser
Charlotte NC Pet Photographer
Charlotte NC Dog Photographer
Charlotte NC Animal Photographer
Charlotte NC Animal Photography
Charlotte NC Dog Photography
Charlotte NC Pet Photography
North Carolina Pet Photographer
Humane Society of Charlotte 2K Dog Walk
North Carolina Dog Photographer
North Carolina Dog Photography
North Carolina Pet Portraits
North Carolina Dog Portraits
HSC Pet Palooza 2014
Modern Images for Posh Pets
Modern Pet Photographer
After the walk, the festivities began! However, there’s always time for a quiet moment to catch your breath and take in the view.
Humane Society of Charlotte dog walk
Pups got to make their own paw portrait artwork or work off the burn from the walk with a massage…
Humane Society of Charlotte event
People weren’t left out either! Face painting, massages, and palm readings were just a few of the things keeping the party going!
Pet Palooza Charlotte NC
The Fido Fashion Show quickly got the attention of the crowd as adoptable dogs and HSC alumni strutted their stuff in some divine attire.
Doggie Fashion Show Pet Palooza
Humane Society of Charlotte NC Pet Palooza
Doggy Fashion Show Pet Palooza
Humane Society of Charlotte Pet Palooza
And what is a festival without great music? Alex Kastanas and gogo Pilot kept the crowd entertained.
2014 Pet Palooza Pictures
On the other side of the park, your pup had the opportunity to try out the agility course. Jumps, tunnels, and platforms were just a few of the obstacles the Zoom Room trainers would lead your pup through.
A huge food truck paw-villion kept hunger at bay while a beer/wine garden did the same for thirst. (Don’t you just love the dog staring at the beer being poured?!?)
2014 Pet Palooza Photos
My favorite part of the day was just watching people hanging out with their beloved 4-leggers. :)
Humane Society of Charlotte Pet Palooza
2014 Pet Palooza Charlotte NC
Pet Palooza Independence Park
Humane Society of Charlotte NC Pet Palooza 2014
2014 Pet Palooza North Carolina
HSC Fundraiser
Not to be forgotten, there were a few epic contests including some great entries for best trick…

Needless to say, Pet Palooza knocked my socks off and I want to thank HSC for inviting me out. I also want to thank all off the great sponsors, vendors, people and dogs that made the event possible.

Again, if you’d like to see more pictures from the event, you may do so HERE.

Thank you and I hope to see everyone again next year!

Beth - Looks like it was a great day! So many happy dogs and people!


Aurora was a sight for sore eyes on the long, empty beaches of Bouge Banks. Her unforgettable smile was it’s own beacon…kinda like a lighthouse that attracted nothing but joy. And this girl has a lot to smile about.

When Aurora was 5 weeks old, she was found abandoned along with her brother. Luckily, they were scooped up and fostered by a loving family. The brother was adopted out but, in the meantime, Aurora’s foster mom quickly became a foster-failure. In short, Aurora had found a permanent home. :)

I introduce Aurora, photographed in Emerald Isle…

Crystal Coast Dog Photographer
Bogue Banks Dog Photographer
Aurora was a little shy and jumpy and first, but her eyes lit up when she saw my tennis ball. And when she realized it squeaked? Yeah. She came right out of her shell.
Modern Images For Posh Pets
Contemporary Pet Portraits
Aurora being bashful… 
Beach Dog Portraits
Not a fan of the water, Aurora was beyond happy to smile for me on dry land. :)
North Carolina Beach Portraits
Emerald Isle NC Pet Photographer
Dog Photography Beach Session

A huge thanks to Aurora’s family for allowing me to photograph this little beacon of happiness! :)

Home Makeover – Guest Room

I have quite a few hobbies and interests but I’m not necessarily very good at them. For example, I’m very interested in architecture but I would never step foot inside a building I designed. It might collapse. Ha! That being said, this post is based on one of those interests that I’m not especially fantastic at - decorating.

As some of you may know, we recently moved into a tiny condo in Uptown Charlotte.  It was previously a rental and wasn’t in the best shape ever. It needed paint, added storage, and some kitchen and bathroom updating. We’ve slowly been working on all of that and we are *this close* to actually completing one room – the Guest Bedroom.

To give you an idea of what the room looked like before, I dug up some photos from when our condo was on the market the past two times. Evidently, in 2010, the room was a baby room with a seriously green wall. When the condo was listed when we purchased, the walls had been painted a neutral color but they still needed freshening up. We liked the concrete floors so we decided to keep them. However, the lighting needed an upgrade and, because there is no closet in this room, we needed some storage.


Guest Bedroom before
As we brainstormed about the bedroom, I began to put a storyboard together. I was really starting to like this makeover! The only thing that varied from the storyboard were the curtains. We already had linen-colored ones on-hand and they ended up looking great too!
GuestBedroom storyboard
And here is the *almost* final room. A few caveats first… 1) these are quick snapshots with no added lighting (because I felt lazy today) so sorry if they aren’t the best quality; 2) The landscaping in the backyard is an upcoming project and I didn’t move our bicycles (see #1) – sorry; 3) I still need to add some cool decorations to the mini nightstands I made. Anyway, you get the idea!
Cat Portraits
I LOVE this light from West Elm! It really makes the room!
West Elm Lighting
I got these gorgeous watercolor prints from a fantastic artist on Etsy. I highly recommend checking her work out!
Etsy watercolor prints
A few more shots. 
Guest Bedroom makeover
And, because this is a pet photography blog, I had to include an animal in a couple of the shots. Here’s Teton (who is celebrating his 13th birthday this week) getting ready to decorate the room his own way…with cat hair.
Charlotte NC Cat Photographer

Quite the transformation, huh? If this stuff doesn’t bore you guys, I’ll try to share more as we move along in our home. If you want to know details about where some items are sourced, I’ll list them below. Thanks for reading about my side hobby! ;)

Paint color – Nimbus Cloud by Martha Stewart (color-matched with Behr paint)

Curtains – Ikea

Cabinets – Ikea

Chandelier – West Elm

Grey Quilt – Target

Rug – West Elm

Red/White Duvet Cover and Shams – West Elm

Throw Pillow – West Elm


Frames – Michael’s

Picture Ledge (also used for “nightstands”) – Ikea

Vinyl “wood” tile accent wall – Home Depot

Let me know if you have any other questions!

Meghan - Looks awesome! I love it!

Charlotte Reeves - And you say you’re “not particularly fantastic” at decorating – are you kidding? You’re amazing! Can you come do my whole house pretty please?

Charlie – Fort Mill Magazine

Fluffy, adorable, little and puppy. Mmmhmmm. I’m in.

Those words describe Charlie to a T! I had the opportunity to spend an evening with him as I shot some images for a story about Pet Photography for Fort Mill Magazine. He didn’t disappoint and I think he had his game face on knowing that these images would be put out there for the world to see. Here are a few of my favorites of this I-wanna-kiss-your-face-all-over Havanese puppy…

Fort Mill Magazine Dog Portrait
Fort Mill SC Dog Photographer
Pick up a copy of the magazine and flip to page 18 for the full story. Or, check out the digital copy HERE.
South Carolina Pet Photographer

Beth - He’s so incredibly adorable!

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