When to Hire a Second Shooter


A lot of couples I’ve worked with this year have asked me this one question: Do we need a second shooter? I get it, couples want to be sure their wedding day memories are captured, but there are times when you really don’t need to waste the money on a second shooter. Today on SJ’s Bridal Banter, we’re going to chat about when you should hire a second shooter for your wedding day. 

Now, being a wedding photographer, I think second shooters are super helpful. They give another fresh angle on wedding day events, they might capture the first kiss at a different angle, capture a moment I wouldn’t see or am busy shooting family portraits while they are doing candids of your guests, etc. But, there are times when couples do not need to spend their carefully saved money on a second shooter. Also, those are usually $50/hr to have a second shooter come and work your wedding. 

I’ve had couples who just wanted a second shooter for the ceremony. And yes, that is super helpful! Sometimes, as a wedding photographer, you can’t walk all around the ceremony area in time for exchanging rings, or something, so those shots might be taken from far away instead of right up front, so then, it would be helpful to have someone there up close to capture that. Two different angles. 

You can totally have a second shooter if it gives you peace of mind, and you can also just hire one for half the day, or a certain part of your day. Totally do-able! 

However, you don’t need a second shooter for a small intimate backyard wedding. You don’t need one if you have 100 people or less at your wedding, you might not need a second shooter. 

Here are some reasons why you might want a second shooter at your wedding: 

  1. If you want two angles of your ceremony like your first kiss, walking down the aisle, exchanging rings, etc. 

  2. If your main photographer is off shooting family portraits and you want someone to capture more candids of your guests. 

  3. If you want tons of images of the boys getting ready and also the girls getting ready… like a TON. 

  4. And just different angles of certain moments throughout the day. 

  5. If you’re having 400+ please attend your wedding and want at least one image of everyone there with you/ or candids. 

I think second shooters are great, but they are not always needed. Most wedding photographers are 100% comfortable doing weddings on their own (unless they advertise as a husband/wife team, or more than one photographer in the package), but most of the time, your wedding photographer is more than able to capture everything at your wedding day for you to remember for years to come. 

Hope that helps with any second shooter questions couples may have! If you have more questions, I am happy to address them anytime, just shoot me an email and we’ll chat! 

Happy Bridal Banter, friends! 

Sarah Jane BrownComment