This week, in honour of May the 4th, the Ottawa Humane Society teamed up with photographer Rohit Saxena and the 501st Capital City Garrison to tackle a Star Wars themed photo-op to raise pet adoption awareness.
The shoot included storm troopers, Tusken raiders and of course, adorable animals.
Saxena has been volunteering at the shelter for just under five years and told HuffPost Canada that the shoot was just as much fun as it looked.
“My two year old was absolutely terrified of the masked characters — the animals did a lot better,” he says. “Most of the volunteers had a good idea of how to handle animals, and Garindan (Mark) with the black costume and snoot even brought peanut butter to better cozy up to the canines.”
The 501st Garrison are known for their immaculate costumes and their work at charity events — they even have Chris Hadfield as an honourary member — but Saxena explains that the Empire may not entirely serve the dark side.
“My original plan was to photograph Star Wars toys with animals, but I remembered the group existed that week, and my friends put me in contact with them,” said Saxena. “My wife baked brownies for them to show our personal appreciation for their sorta last minute volunteering and I brought $30 worth of Tim Horton's coffee and doughnuts to help out. We are all volunteers, but I wanted them to feel immensely appreciated."
Rohit, along with Matt Wells and Sally Ann Sax, are a group of photographers who volunteer their time helping with the animals, but also think up themes for weekly photo shoots. Last week's was Game of Thrones and next week, well, you’ll just have to wait and see.
Look at the slideshow below to see which pet friend you would like to bring home.