Should you have a second shooter at your wedding?

How would you answer this question: Should you have a second shooter at your wedding?

This can be a big decision when it comes to your wedding photography. One photographer or two? While it never hurts to have back up, there are definitely pros and cons to having your photographer bring backup. 

Pro: No Moments Missed

You want photos of you getting ready with your people and you also want photos of your babe getting ready ,too. But your photographer can’t be in two places at once. It can be incredibly difficult (and stressful!) for both you and your photographer trying to get all of these moments. Having a second person there means you can get images of both with less stress and time to really enjoy those moments. 

Other times a second photographer comes especially in handy?

  • Your first look: You get to have both of your first reactions captured on camera to hold onto forever
  • The ceremony: this lets you get images of your babe’s first reaction to seeing you and images of you being walked down the aisle. 
  • Your reception: I know this might seem like the time you don’t need two photographers, but your reception is going to be so much fun and having so many moving parts. Having two photographers allows one of them to document you and your new spouse while the second gets to focus on the candid moments with your guest. 

Pro: Get All the Angles

Your wedding photographer can only get one angle at a time, but adding a second shooter means you get more photos from more angles in way less time. Having your lead photog bring back up means that in a short amount of time, you’ll get a ton of gorgeous images.

It’s also a great insurance policy that you’ll get all the images you were hoping for. Double the photographers, double the shots, double the photos you’re going to love.

Pro: A Second Wedding Pro at Your Fingertips

One misconception about second photographers is that they are don’t provide the same quality of work. But that is rarely the case. 

Second shooters aren’t always just people who are brand new to the industry. Most of the time, second shooters are helping out their industry colleagues, but also taking on solo weddings of their own. When your wedding photographer brings a backup, they aren’t just holding bouquets and fluffing out your dress. They are taking gorgeous photos to compliment the ones your main photographer is already taking.

All of your photos will be edited by your lead photographer (the person you’ve been working with and hired!) Everything will look and feel consistent, just more to love.

Con: Not Always Budget Friendly

If you’re on a tight budget, the cost of an extra photographer might be a factor for you. Many photographers include a second shooter in their packages for a fee. You’re certainly not paying twice the price, but it isn’t free either. 

I will always advocate for capturing more of your wedding day moments, but I also understand you’re on a budget. So if it’s a matter of racking up a ton of debt or having a second shooter at your wedding, maybe it’s smarter to stick to just one camera on site.

Answer: It’s Really Up to You

There’s no perfect answer here. It’s entirely up to your budget, what you value and what you want from your day. My best advice is to consider the things I mentioned above and have a conversation with your wedding photographer. They’ll be able to guide you through the process and help you make the best decision for your day.

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