We had the good fortune of connecting with Ruby Sandoval and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ruby, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
I grew up in a small border town with Mexico, and it wasn’t until I left that I realized I was too Mexican to be American, yet too American to be Mexican. In a way, I felt like I didn’t belong. That maybe I wasn’t where I was supposed to be. I have always been independent and having a mother who worked for the love of running her own business made a significant impact. I saw how my friends’ moms would be at home all day catering to them and their husband and again felt out of place. Don’t get me wrong, my mom is the greatest mom and an amazing wife, but seeing how she pursued her dreams was incredible! Sometimes people judge her and criticize her for not doing whatever they think she should be doing, but that never stopped her and still doesn’t. If she has an idea, she elaborates on it. If she has a new dream, she chases it. It is because of her that I am a go-getter, and I’m not afraid to “not fit in.” In a world full of Kims, why not be an Audrey?
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
You would think it’s typical considering we are in a border state, but I’m fluent in Spanish! I’m all about pampering my couples (and families) and only accept a limited number of bookings each year, which means that whenever I have a wedding, that will be my ONLY wedding that weekend. When I first started my photography business, I decided that I wanted to control my schedule. I didn’t want to plan vacations or family events around work. It was a challenge at first since I didn’t want to turn anyone away, but I have reached a point in my career where I can afford to say no. I no longer have to miss soccer games or school plays. I get to enjoy my family and be present, which is the most important thing in my life. I am all about celebrating love and life! Whether you’re updating your family photos or have been together five months or five years, love is love. And it’s worth capturing and celebrating!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I have lived in Tucson for 10 years and it saddens me to say that I still haven’t checked everything off my bucket list! My husband and I are big U of A basketball fans, so watching a game either at McKale or at Frog and Firkin is a must. Taking a drive up to Mt. Lemmon is definitely a must, followed by the cookie cabin. Having breakfast at Village Bakehouse makes for the perfect day and walking around Tohono Chul. I’m a big foodie, so It would be eating out for breakfast, lunch, and dinner! There are so many great spots to eat in town, but a few of my favorites include Penca, Reillys, Charro Steak, North, Contigo, and I can keep going! The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My best friend and greatest supporter, my husband! He has been by my side every step of the way encouraging me whenever I feel defeated and reminding me to take drink water when I’ve been working all day. I’m fortunate to be part of such an amazing community! Vanessa Hicks for being an incredible business coach, Ashley Auger for taking me under her wing and teaching me her marketing strategies, and plenty of local photographers and vendors who have been so kind and supportive like Dusty Reeds, Jessica Robertson, Kristin Terpstra, Sandra Platt, Katie Gilbert, Julia Hauschildt, Charlotte Rose, Amber Lea, and the list goes on! Also, the biggest shoutout goes to my two kids! They were and always will be my favorite models. When I first started learning photography, my son would let me practice with him and now so does my daughter. My daughters’ first word was “cheese,” so they’re definitely photographer kids.