2021 in Review


December 18, 2021

It’s time for my 2021 in Review and I did not let the fears of 2020 stop me from doing what I do best, which is reaching dreams and achieving goals. 2021 was the best year yet, and for many reasons!

Monterey Wedding Photographer

Hey, I’m Dana Arnold! I am a wedding photographer based out of Monterey, California. My story has a business owner is unique because unlike most, I move my business. A lot. My husband is currently active duty Navy and so every two years, we move from one place to another. During a Pandemic, I moved my business from Virginia to California. I was scared because weddings were not fully in service yet in California. I was worried that I would not do so well my first year. That was a lie. Because I had my best year yet and I am just so grateful.

2021 in review

2021 in Review

I continued working with a business coach

My hard-work and success is in-part because of my business coach, Candice Coppola. She helped me create a roadmap for my move so I can get noticed, meet new vendor friends here in the area, and just settle in more nicely. I felt much more confident in my move because of her and this amazing small group of wedding vendors from all over the world. My business as a whole grew even better because of her.

I got booked in full

Not bad for being the new photographer in town, but I was able to book out my 2021 season. That means by March or April, I filled my calendar with amazing weddings, elopements, military events, and some family sessions here in Monterey. So crazy to say, but it did happen. Each of my weddings and other bookings were a dream come true. Everyone was nice, welcoming, and such supportive friends! Shoutout to my new industry friends who have helped me get there as well (shoutout to Tee and Rebecca and Jenn, ya’ll are incredible).

I became a bridal dress consultant.

To this day, I still laugh at this, but I got a part-time job half way through the year as a bridal dress consultant at thee best place to buy a dress in Carmel/Monterey. I am not biased, we were voted the best by locals. This started as an accident and turned into something so much more. The manager trusted in me and because of her, I have learned so much about wedding dresses and the wedding industry. It’s a job I enjoy doing a few days a week, and would not want to spend that time doing anything else

New Business Coming Soon

This is news I am so excited about, because it was long overdue. But, I started a new photography business that focuses on weddings in Europe! I still cannot believe I finally pulled the plug on this. How I am going about it is attending several styled weddings/Retreats through AMV Retreats. I will be Photographing styled weddings at real venues in the UK, France, and Greece. It’s all still surreal and I cannot wait to see where this goes!

The personal things

Personally, this year, I have overcome a lot. I have learned that it’s okay to say no to things that are not worth your time. Because of this, I lost friends but I also gained friends who respect me and value me. One of the hardest I have overcome this year was being hospitalized from having a terrible Kidney Infection, the week of our wedding anniversary. I was pale, bleeding blood, and shaking to the bones. My husband had to carry me to the car and rush me to the hospital. They found out it spread to other parts of the body. I still photographed a wedding that weekend, while having an allergic reaction to the medicine. It was a mess, but I made it through!

The other personal thing I went through was learning who my real friends are. It was done the hard way and I wish things would have turned out differently. But, again, because of loosing people I thought were important to me, turns out they were people who just were not meant to be in my life. I’ve had rumors spread about me, likes spread about me, and it can bring you down. Thankfully, I have a tribe that has my back and I will always be grateful for them!

2021 in Review

Looking back on my 2021 in review, I am just so grateful for all that has happened to me and my business. I got to make up for lost time in 2020 and travel to Hawaii for Military Retirement. Back to Virginia for some rescheduled weddings, and nailed my first year in California. 2022 is already set to be epic with only a few more spots left for weddings in California, and all the amazing traveling and trips I have planned.

Dana Arnold Photography continues to grow and I am excited for the journey that is ahead. For, the journey is just as amazing as the destination its-self. Thank you everyone for your amazing support!

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