You can call a second shooter the “back me up” shooter, the “position filler” or the assistant. he reason for this post is to acknowledge the role of a second shooter and the way I think it should work.
As a shooter, it is very important to always hire a second shooter because of the valuable moments that can be captured without the main photographer. This also helps the main photographer to focus on must-have images while the second shooter focus on the other shots like the groom getting ready, capturing images from different angles and most of the time to assist the main photographer in getting great images. Also the second shooter can use this platform to learn, practice his or her technical skills during an actual wedding without taking high risks.
Last weekend, I assisted Chris of Georgetown Pics, to cover a Jewish/Indian wedding. I used this opportunity to try a different approach in capturing real moments in the wedding. Below are some of the things I learned from the wedding and some of my favorite photos.
Work as a team. As a second shooter, you have to work as a team player in getting great images. Make sure you study the wedding timeline, questions and dress properly for the job because you are representing the main photographer’s business. Do NOT advertise your own business by giving wedding guests your own business card.
Shoot Constantly. Keep shooting or capturing moment the main photographer cannot capture. Shoot as if this is your job, and capture as many images as possible. I wasn’t too happy when my second shooter handed me 200 images from an 8-hr wedding.
Capture unique images and angles. Do not shoot at the same angle as the main photographer. For example, if the main photographer is shooting the formals the second shooter can shoot what’s going on in the background like using a telephoto lens to get photo-journalistic images.
Assist. Always try to assist the main photographer all the time. Like carrying equipment, shooting and running minor errands etc.
Learn. Use this opportunity to learn and practice
Have fun. Lastly, make sure you have fun. Be creative and explore more into your work. Try to capture amazing images while having fun