We had the good fortune of connecting with Nathan & Dana Dorn and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nathan & Dana, what role has risk played in your life or career?
We’ve been in business for ten years, but we spent about eight years being held back by ourselves before we realized it. It sounds silly to say it now, but the most significant risk we’ve taken in business is believing in ourselves. For years, we hesitated before every decision. We’d wonder what “they” would say and then imagined the worst things. It was depilating and made a lot of our business conversations less than productive. I still don’t know why it’s easier to believe the negative things than the positive things regarding our ability. Except for maybe that when we say something negative about ourselves, it feels true, and when we say something positive, it sounds arrogant. In the effort to be honest, we side with cynical and without realizing we hold ourselves back. It’s a vicious cycle. We would never give our friends such negative feedback. Why is it so easy to see that those around us are great, but when we look back at ourselves, we’re almost blind to our ability. The risk we took was changing how we talked to ourselves, changing what we let ourselves believe. We dared to believe that we’re artists and that what we do adds value & longevity to people’s memories. And the byproduct of this belief is a successful business and happy clients. It’s the best risk we’ve taken in business & the best investment we’ve made in ourselves. What we think about matters.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
We are husband & wife wedding photographers. We met in college at Brooks Institute of Photography. Building a life, and a marriage, and a business, and a family together is our greatest reward. It hasn’t been easy, but it has been worth it. It’s helpful that we’re in this together, we’re not going at it alone. I think on top of having the right thoughts, persistence through the learning years. We’re still learning and always trying to grow into being better people, better photographers, & better humans. As long you’re trying to be better, you’ll succeed. Even if its centimeters at a time. Our brand is focused on finding the best in those that we photograph. Our mantra is “Focus On The Good,” which involves every aspect of our lives, not just what we’re focused on in the lens.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Oceanside is such a great city. There are so many awesome places around town. We’d have to hit up breakfast at Beach Break, Don’s Country Kitchen, & Swamis. Walk it off by heading down to the beach at low-tide. We love feeling our sands in the toes. Walking the pier and watching the surfers is a nice thing to do to past time and people watch. We’re huge fans of Campfire in Carlsbad we’d head down there for a dinner and order the camp feast! We’re into the local coffee scene. Steel Mill, Revolution Roasters, & Captain Grounds. Favorite places to shop would be Lucky Street Productions & Rising Co. LTH is always a delicious dinner, and you can spend hours on the beach walking the sand, or enjoying the harbor.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Soooo much credit to the village, our families for watching our kids so we can work. Listening to Pastor Steven Furtick from Elevation Church has been huge. D’Arcy Benincosa’s Play It Brave Podcast has been a great mind shift. Jasmine Stars empowering emails & podcasts. What we think about matters, listen to things that make you better.
We took all the wedding images & The photos of us and our family are from a friend http://pacoandbetty.com/