Wednesday, December 28, 2011


A few thoughts as we approach the new year.

Change. It’s a happening. For starters, I sent out a formal announcement that SarahScruggsPhotography is getting closed down. It’s not entirely true. Sarah Scruggs the photographer still lives on. It feels funny saying that, but that’s the truth. I am comfortable with calling myself a photographer now….because  honestly when you’re first starting out, the voice inside shouts nothing but doubt. My first impression of taking photos for money was nothing but a “wing it” survival mode mentality. image

but I still have a quest before me. I do not wish to be merely a girl with a camera. I want to shape up. Define. Challenge myself.

I did some soul searching.

I knew I had to quit the weddings…but what do I do with myself? Do I go back to school? Do I force myself to be content with just being a nanny? or a supermarket clerk? or a bum….I’d fit right in with the rest of the Charlestonites. I could even go the hipster route and beg for money in my urban outfitters clothing on street corners.

A few months ago I read this post on my friends blog (she’s an amazing writer and has some deeply wonderful words for people). I laughed because I too have my list of things I wanted to be one day.

What did you want to be (and why) as a kid?

      • An Animator: hopelessly hooked on Disney movies and the joys of Saturday morning cartoons (sonic the hedgehog anyone?), I’ve always been fascinated by drawings that move. This idea progressed with me into high school and is still a fascination, except now I dream of being a conceptual artist. I feel like it would focus on what I love doing: creating, but you don’t carry your ideas out- someone else does. Isn’t that nice? and since I’m particularly awesome at not finishing things I start- I felt like this had great potential.
      • An Architect: oh math….dangit….math….
      • A Painter: I had delusional visions of being a millionaire painter, traveling and painting in little villas in the hillside.
      • A Veterinarian: This was until I discovered that a vet works with sick animals, not cute furry adorable bundles of joy, but sick oozing, angry things and I’d  have to do things like look at blood or mend bones. I’m sure if there were a  job where all I got to do was play with happy animals all day-I’d be the way to go (and lets face it, Petsmart just doesn’t pay enough).
      • a Ballerina: this was incredibly short-lived since my mom signed me up for ballet lessons as a child. True to my hopelessly coordinated self, the only thing they would allow me to be was a light. I was to sit on the flour and unfurrow my arms at a particular point in the piece and that was that. No squatting prancing or pirouetting for this girl. But really I’m doing good if I can make a trip to the bathroom without face planting or doing some sort of I-tripped-but-I-might-can-make-this-look-intentional dance.
      • Writer: my best friend and I spent our grade school days at recess writing stories together (I’m well aware that normal children run and play soccer and things like that). While we wrote, we play acted. She was predominantly the writer, while I supplied the ridiculous. Our stories were mainly about star wars because that’s what we were crazy about back then. Nonetheless the desire to craft a story has stuck with me. Unfortunately an excellence in the English language has not. I’m sure most people who read my blog cringe at my unedited free flow of thought. I am in awe of people who write well..I genuinely covet and respect the gift but I’m also real with who I am. I just don’t have it Smile but thankfully things like blogs exist so I can get it out of my system.

I’m proud to say that even at an early age, I entertained no thoughts of higher education. While the idea of being really smart seems really cool, Ive always been geared towards what I can do with my hands. That is to say it is much easier to imagine me working a plow than being an engineer. (Not to undermine that thanks to my parents and folks from my alma mater, I graduated college, and I greatly value the education I’ve been blessed with).  Never once did I fancy myself a photographer (except when I looked through National Geographic and I think everyone does that).

But here I am! I’m going to try to be a photographer. Not a wedding photographer, but something. I‘ve just got to figure it out in the meantime.


so here is the conclusion of my rambles. Your job doesn’t define you, but you can define your job.

It’s just like the Thanksgiving dinner table conversation from Across the Universe


Max’s father: Max! Get serious, for once! What are you going to DO with your life?
Max: Why is it always what will I do? "What will he do", "What will he do," "Oh, my god what will he do", Do, do, do, do, do. Why isn't the issue here who I am?
Uncle teddy: Because, Maxwell, what you do defines who you are.
Max: No, Uncle Teddy. Who you are defines what you do. Right Jude?
Jude: [awkward] ... Well, surely it's not what you do, but the, uh... the way that you do it.

I feel like it’s worth weighing my options because I get so attached to what I do. There is an inner struggle for me to separate what I do from what I am. So for now, I’m going down this path. I’m making changes because they are crucial, but I’m hoping to stick with something that I’ve started. For once I want to push through the hard stuff and keep going …but change, always change.

I’ve made some mistakes. I’ve done things I should have done differently and make compromises where I shouldn’t have. But I’ve learned so much in the process. I think God has helped me to admit defeat, but also to take it and learn from it so I can keep going. This is new for me. I’m a shut down and start over kind of person. I think before, I might have taken this discouragement as a sign from God to stop and do just that. Now, I’m thinking God wants me to learn to press on. Ultimately to focus on my actions as a person rather than my career. My character is far more important than any picture I will ever take. Any pride in my work. Any path in life. If I lose site of my purpose on earth, there is no real value in my work.

Colossians 3:23 (NIV)

23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters,

Philippians 2:14,15

14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.”[a] Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky

1 Corinthians 10:31 (NIV)

31 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

1 comment:

  1. Amazing. inspiring. A great reminder.
    Thanks for sharing!
    In my eyes you've ALWAYS defined a photographer!


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