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Meet Meg Ruffing

Today we’d like to introduce you to Meg Ruffing.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Meg. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
In the fall of 2012, I was a stay-at-home Mom with two young girls. I was in the thick of it. I was having a rare night out with some other moms who were in the same season of life – stay at home Moms of young children. Someone brought up the topic of dream jobs. We started talking about what we’d be doing if we weren’t living the glamorous lives of Moms of young children. I said, “I would be a photographer!” I don’t even know where it came from. It had never occurred to me that photography was a career option. I had gotten my first DSLR a few summers before and I loved taking pictures of my kids and playing around in photoshop. I even thought I was really good at it (I wasn’t).

After I blurted out this confession to my girlfriends, I blushed because who would ever take me seriously? I never thought anyone would pay me to make images.

Just four months later I found myself walking into a Fort Bend County Courthouse to file for a business license. It makes me laugh because, 5 years later, I still don’t know why I thought I was ready to open a business. I had no idea what I was getting myself into. No idea what it would take to run a business. But I knew I was tired of sitting around waiting for the stars to align before chasing my dream. I realized then that timing is a tricky thing and there’s never really a perfect time for anything. I had a sign by my desk that said “Plan less, do more” and I am so glad I listened.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Looking back, it feels like I took a really long time to get the hang of this. Creating things is hard – whether you’re a photographer, a graphic designer, a baker, or a writer. You’re putting a piece of yourself out into the world for judgment every time you create something. Looking around at others in your field, it’s easy to think that everyone has it together. They don’t! They’re all just figuring it out too. I wish someone had told me that when I was first starting out.

There’s a feeling that you get when you’re starting out that you have to be good at everything. When I first opened my business and called myself a photographer, I thought I had to be everyone’s photographer. I just wanted clients – any clients – and I had this idea that I had to be good at taking pictures of everything; babies, houses, families. But these subjects are so incredibly different. Just because you’re a photographer doesn’t mean you have to – or should – photograph all the things. It takes a long time to find your specialty. What I’ve come to realize is that having a specialty allows me to better serve my clients. Rather than being a jack of all trades, focusing on fewer things allows me to hone my craft to do those things well.

I wondered why was it so easy for me to capture sincere moments and connection for a young family, but it was incredibly difficult to photograph a house for a realtor. I finally started listening to that inner voice that was guiding me towards the types of sessions that really satisfy my creative spirit. Photography has never felt like a job to me so when I’m taking on the right kinds of sessions, I am completely fulfilled by my work. When that feeling of unease starts creeping in, I know I’m straying from my true path. In those times I need to refocus and get back to shooting what I love.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Meg Ruffing – what should we know?
I specialize in Seniors, Engagement and Wedding photography.

I am quite proud of how I’ve grown my Senior Portrait business over the past two years. I love working with seniors; from wardrobe consultation to product delivery, I have so much fun with them! It’s really rewarding to be able to be a small part of this special time in their lives. It’s so tender for the parents and so thrilling for the kids.

I get to work with teens who are at the edge of such an exciting time. They’re wrapping up their high school career and most are getting ready to leave home for the first time and head to college. Their excitement is contagious! I always leave my senior sessions energized and optimistic about the future.

I try to deliver images to my seniors that really hold up over time and represent this period in their life with beauty and authenticity. I want them to look back at these images in twenty or thirty years and be transported back to the time right before they left the safety of the nest.

I will be a puddle on the floor when it comes time to shoot my own daughters’ senior sessions.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
Houston has incredibly talented creatives who are generous in sharing their time and knowledge. It’s exciting to be a part of a group that values collaboration and puts community over competition. Most of the photographers I work within our community really subscribe to the idea that there’s enough business to go around and there’s room for all of us at the top. Like JFK said, “A rising tide lifts all the boats.”

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