The most exhilarating night of the year has arrived and the North Pole buzzes with activity. The reindeer are harnessed, the sleigh is almost loaded and Mrs. Claus brings out a last minute snack for Santa. Perhaps a savory meal is packed in her basket for him to eat later, much later, since tonight children throughout the world await his arrival. Gustafson’s quintessential Santa checks the stars as his lead elf consults the map. It’s almost time to depart!
The creation of this painting was a family affair: Scott’s in-laws modeled for Santa and Mrs. Claus and his wife’s sister and her children were immortalized as the various elves.
Over the nearly twenty-five years of his career, he has had the opportunity to fulfill commissions for a number of varied clients and publishers such as: Celestial Seasonings, Saturday Evening Post, The Bradford Exchange, Dreamworks and The Greenwich Workshop. His illustrated books include The Night Before Christmas, Peter Pan, Nutcracker, as well as two original titles, Animal Orchestra and Alphabet Soup.