Local photographer Jessica Booton becomes friends with Andreas Lee, son of Chris and Somi Lee, prior to his photo session Saturday during a Celebration of Smiles event to raise funds for Operation Smile. Photo by Maire O’Neill/ladailypost.com
Andreas Lee stands with a little assistance during a photo shoot Saturday watched by his father, Chris Lee, as his mother, Somie keeps out of sight behind photographer Jessica Booton. Also pictured is Jessica Gallegos who assisted Booton during the event. Photo by Maire O’Neill/ladailypost.com
Andreas Lee tries to escape during his photo shoot Saturday. Photo by Maire O’Neill/ladailypost.com
Los Alamos photographer Jessica Booton was busy Saturday as she joined with PPA Charities, the philanthropic arm of Professional Photographers of America, to promote Celebration of Smiles and raise money for Operation Smile.
In exchange for a $24 donation to Operation Smile, Booton and other PPA Photographers nationwide offered the gift of an individual portrait session and here in Los Alamos, Dr. Bill Nichols, DDS, of Los Alamos Children’s Dentistry sweetened the pot by adding $10 to each $24 donated. Between them, they raised $1,251 during Saturday’s event and donations to the cause are still being received.
Although tired from a long day of crawling around the floor taking baby photos and trying to get the perfect pose from her subjects, Booton said it was fun to work with children all day.
“Smiles are so important and it was nice to be able to support those who help support surgeries for children who need them,” she said.
Founded in 1982, Operation Smile is a worldwide children’s medical charity dedicated to helping children and young adults born with facial deformities such as cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities. A single surgery costs $240 and takes as little as 45 minutes, yet every three minutes a child somewhere in the world is born with a facial deformity. One in 10 of those children will not survive until their first birthday and those who do often live in isolation and pain.
Even though the photography event is over, Booton will accept donations for Operation Smile. For more information, call 505.320.4605 or go to JessicaBootonPhotography.com.