I have heaps of couples ask me, "What is a second shooter and do I need one?" The answer is like a 2007 Facebook relationship status "It's complicated". A second shooter is another professional photographer hired by your photographer to help capture your big day. Usually, this second photographer is optional and not the same shooter every time. Many times, second shooters are photographers who own their own businesses and have a bunch of their own weddings to shoot as well. So the question remains: do I need a second shooter? Below are the 5 main reasons you would want to include another photographer at your wedding:
1. Groomsmen Getting Ready Photos
Often times, the bride and groom are getting ready at the same time. Sometimes, this is not in the same place. Since your photographer is only human, he or she can only be in one place at one time! If you want photos of both you and your intended's getting ready process, you may want to consider a second shooter.
2. Extra Angles and Different Perspective
A wedding is a live event! You cannot plan every single picture you want. It tends to be a very documentary day besides portraits. If you want a second perspective, you'll want a second shooter. Think about walking down the aisle, a person can either stand at front and get the close shot, or behind and get the back shot. Two places at once is not possible.
3. Great for Large Weddings
If you have a massive wedding, chances are your photographer may not be able to capture every guest or couple. A second helps with grabbing extra detail shots and candids of guests.
4. Assists Main Photographer
This reason may be a little selfish. A second shooter is also a type of assistant. They can help organize and read out the list of family formal combinations or reload film or batteries if need be. If you have someone helping your main photographer, the day will run a lot smoother.
5. The "Just In Case"
Although it is highly unlikely, technology can fail. If for some reason a camera implodes or a memory card fails (which CAN rarely happen but it is possible people), the second shooter still has images from your day. Also, if your main shooter should be injured or unable to perform in any way, this is your safety net.
There you have it folks!! I hope this answers your "should I or shouldn't I?" questions about second shooters!