I’m truly grateful for each wedding I got to second shoot before heading out and shooting them for myself. Between second shooting and hiring second shooters, there’s a couple things I thought would be good to share. Things that will help you – whether you’re the one that wants to impress and get as much as you can out of your second shooting experience OR whether you’re hiring and in want of ideas of what you should be expecting.
- Be prepared. Part of the reason a second shooter is hired is for the worst case scenario : that the main photographer will be unable to shoot the wedding. A big peace of mind is knowing that there is someone there who is qualified and has all the gear needed to shoot the big day. Make sure everything is charged and your memory cards are ready in abundance.
- A small hack : make sure the clock on the camera is synced to your main photographer’s camera. There’s nothing more infuriating than sorting out jumbled photos during post production!
- Make sure that you are aware of the schedule. I would always bring a copy with me on second shooting jobs. Keep and eye on the time and serve as a reminder here and there.
- Shoot the opposite. I always ask my second shooters to shoot from an opposite angle with and opposite lens (so if I’m on a 35mm, I’d expect them to be on a 85mm).
- Remember to balance the line between wanting great shots for your own portfolio and doing what your photographer needs. It’s tricky but you’re there to serve! Act and think like a team.
- Soak up as much as you can. It’s the main photographers job to direct so study how they do that. You can learn so so much from this. Take mental notes of how they’ve made their couples feel comfortable, new poses you could try, how they interact with surrounding guests. What you learn from these days can benefit your business so much. The insight you get is truly the most valuable part of second shooting – not the money, not the portfolio shots.
- On the note of money though – know your worth and charge it! Remember that a full day of shooting is wear and tear on your gear and let’s face it, it’s a tough and tiring job.