How does a young boy growing up in Yankton, South Dakota – population 14,000 – get the idea he can make art for a living? For Bruce Ruff, it started with a book he received as a Christmas present – a step-by-step book on how to draw animals. When he realized he actually could draw animals, and how much he enjoyed it, he was hooked.
Bruce indulged his love of drawing and art throughout his young years, eventually earning a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Mass Communications/Advertising and Graphic Design, with a Minor in Art, from the University of South Dakota. His parents, a real estate agent and a contractor, supported Bruce’s developing passion for design by funding his college advertising competition trips. He has continued to nurture the skills of his trade throughout his career with advanced courses in Photoshop and web animation.
After graduating, Bruce followed family members to Nevada, where he began his graphic design career. He worked for a high-end travel bag company developing print advertisements for international publications and honing his photoshoot direction skills. Bruce went on to work for an in-house book publishing company, learning the art of long format design and pre-press quality control.
The 10 years Bruce spent as a Senior Graphic Designer at a casino developed his design agility. In that fast-paced environment, Bruce learned to quickly assess a project and move easily from one project to the next. He was also able to hone his technical design skills with the Adobe Creative Suite, as well as further develop his skills in illustration, logo development, typography, magazine and catalog production, web design and animation.
Bruce’s work has appeared in the New York Times, World Traveler, and National Geographic, and has garnered him many American Advertising Awards (formerly the ADDYs), as well.
When he’s not hard at work designing great looking things, you’ll find Bruce exploring the great outdoors or kicking back with his guitar – sometimes simultaneously. Bruce lets off steam playing guitar in a local alternative rock band called Moons of Vega. He and his wife Sharon enjoy camping, hiking and snowboarding the Sierra Nevada.