We’ve got a goodie today!! This blog post topic is one that I’m extremely passionate about. I’ve been shooting weddings since 2014 and have learned the hard way over the years that having two photographers at every wedding is mandatory.
Through the years, I’ve had two specific experiences that I thanked my lucky stars that I had a qualified team working with me.
The first was due to a camera malfunction during speeches. An unforeseen camera malfunction came about during an important, emotional moment. While I scrambled to troubleshoot and get my backup camera up to my eye, I missed the moment. Thankfully my second shooter was standing beside me and captured that special moment on my behalf.
The second was due to illness. I woke up the morning of the wedding with the stomach flu. I knew that my clients deserved the best and that me working that day wouldn’t nearly be giving them the best experience. I was thankful to have a highly qualified second shooter scheduled to work AND a third shooter that was scheduled to help me that day. I didn’t have to do any last minute scrambling to find a replacement. My second stepped up to the lead role and my clients raved about her, the experience she provided and the images in the final gallery.
With that said, it’s also just as important that your photographer has a qualified and experienced second shooter. Here’s why:
IT’S THE BEST INSURANCE POLICY This reason and this reason alone is the sole reason why I’m so passionate about photographers having a second shooter at every single wedding. Having two photographers is the best insurance policy, in every way! What if your lead photographer gets into a car wreck on the way to the wedding? Or wakes up with the stomach flu? Or their camera malfunctions during an important moment during the wedding? Having a qualified second photographer as a backup is the key solution to ALL of these scenarios!
NEVER MISSING A MOMENT Your lead photographer can’t be two places at once, and sometimes that’s the key to receiving a thorough final gallery. Oftentimes I’ll assign my second shooter to capture cocktail hour and reception hall detail photos as I’m with the bridal party taking celebratory photos post-ceremony. Additionally, I love having two photographers in order to capture the intimate perspective of some of the more emotional parts of the day, such as the first look, vows, and when the bride walks down the aisle. Having one photographer focus on capturing the bride’s reaction as the other focuses on capturing the groom’s reaction will really allow you to relive the emotion of your day over and over again through photos.
HELPS KEEP THE DAY STRESS FREE I can’t even tell you how many times my second shooter has saved the day! In the unfortunate occasion that things don’t go according to plan, such as hair and makeup running late, or a rain storm occurring just as photos begin, having a second shooter to divide and conquer tasks is extremely helpful. If timeline is looking tight, I’ll often have my second shooter photograph the groomsmen as I work with the bridesmaids. This often relieves about 20 minutes of time and can make a huge difference in the couple’s stress level during the day.
ARTISTIC PERSPECTIVE While the lead photographer is shooting with the couple looking straight at the camera, the second shooter has more artistic freedom to grab unique angles. Sometimes these photos end up being the favorites of the bunch because they appear more candid and artistic.
Be sure to ask your photographer if a second shooter is included in your package during the inquiring phase! You want to prioritize this in your search.