(Closed) 1 versus 2 Photographer – What Do You Recommmend?

posted 5 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
Member
484 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@GMelanie:  I personally feel better with two photographers – if something should (very unlikely) go wrong with one set of equipment, at least there is another photographer at the same time! Plus they will each cover slightly different things, angles, looks, etc.

That being said, I’ve covered many weddings well and thoroughly by myself, so it’s not 100% necessary or anything. 

Post # 4
Member
206 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

How many people are you having?

I would feel best with two, but I think 1 would probably be okay, especially if you are having a smaller guest list.  

Post # 5
Member
187 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

Definitely two.  Your first shooter may be repositioning herself at a time when a perfect photo op comes up, and that’s why the second is there.  It ensures better, smoother coverage.  It also is a protection in case of equipment malfunction, like someone else said.  Two cameras minus one is one, but one minus one is zero, leaving you photoless until the situation can be fixed.

Post # 6
Member
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

A good solo photographer will never leave you shotless. I’ve shot for many years as one photographer and another camera is one second away. I also shoot a dual slot card so memory card failures are not a factor. Angles are not a factor.  I can move like the wind and get a bride coming down the aisle, the grooms reaction and then move around to shoot the bride from the back and the view of the groom receiving her from her parent. Easy! If you are going with one photographer, make sure they have all their bases covered and are experienced. I’ve been shooting weddings for quite a while and have my system down pat. If you are going with two photographers, make sure you are getting two photographers. Very often you are getting a main photographer and either a newbie learner or a spouse with a camera in their hand. Make sure you are actually getting two qualified photographers. Otherwise it’s just pointless. 

One photographer is going to miss moments. Two photographers are going to miss moments. Eight photographers will still miss moments. Do what you feel is right. The myth of ” you need two photographers” is just a sales trend. If you really feel you need two, find a studio that markets both shooters are a team. Not just the star photographer and their names less ” assistant”. Normally the legitimate two shooter teams are spouses or siblings. Good luck!:)

Post # 7
Member
484 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@Lashmont:  A lot of really good points, only…

I do think there are a good number of pros that hire people who know what they are doing to second shoot.  Most of them?  Maybe not, I don’t know… but certainly it’s not ONLY spouses or sibling teams. 

I also shoot a dual slot card so memory card failures are not a factor.

I wonder how many actually do?  The photog I hired doesn’t… sadly… which bothers me.  I personally also shoot with a camera that has two slots and write images to both at once, but I don’t believe that is the norm or anything.
 
But I think the main message is, you should hire a PROFESSIONAL whether you get one of them or two of them.    One professional is so much better than two “starting outs”. 

Post # 8
Member
621 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

@Lashmont:  +1111111

The rise of the two-shooter thing happened right around when the recession hit and that makes sense – lots and lots of husband-wife/boyfriend-girlfriend teams where one photographer does it full time and brings along a spouse or significant other who takes passable photos. This isn’t the case all of the time, but the market was flooded with this in 2008-2009 to the point that now people think 2 photographers is a standard thing. It’s not. I’d rather hire one awesome photographer than 2 mediocre ones. I usually only suggest a second shooter to clients who are having big weddings (175+ guests) or really complicated logistics (like people getting ready in different places, multiple venues, etc). Even then, when I may shoot 8-9 hours I’ll only have a second shooter for 4-5 to cover the major moments. Honestly for most weddings two photographers at the reception (after the main dances/toasts) is overkill. Most of the top wedding photographers in the past few years have all been solo shooters.

So the short answer is: 2 is not always better than 1 but it might be advantageous if you have complicated logistics or a really large guest list.

Post # 9
Member
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@seAprilbride:  I wish it were more. I know too many photographers who have a steady rotation of seconds. I know one girl who used her 15 year old cousin last year when she couldnt find a CL style second. She had charged her clients for that extra shooter. They shoot one or two weddings and get paid nothing or $100.00 for the experience and maybe some portfolio shots. Its a photo industry dirty secret. Most folks who have skilled, consistent second shooters will feature them in their business. If you are getting a free second shooter then you aren’t getting a decent shooter. If two shooters is built in to pricing, expect to pay a good size fee. 

Post # 10
Hostess
1427 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

@GMelanie:  We used Junshien (www.junshien.com) and went with two photographers. Some of the pictures the second shooter caught were amazing! Our photographer has a handful of semi-pros that are apprenticing under him. When the photos were given to us; we couldn’t tell who shot what and only knew of a few when the second shooter was scouting out other locations.

 

Definitely request information on who the second shooter is. Our photographer lists all of his shooters for each event on their blog to give them due credit.

 

 

 

Post # 11
Member
739 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I like the idea of two, especially for the ceremony. I like the idea of one photographer taking pictures of me walking down the aisle, while the other captures FI’s face as I’m walking towards him. I don’t think there would be anything wrong with one though. 

Post # 12
Member
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@mariematt:  it also hit at the time digital made it possible. No one would pay for a second fill shooter. I’d rather add an extra hour to my day and shoot it myself and know its shot right. When it comes right down to it the images from a second shooter only wouldn’t do you much if the main shooter lost their images. A real , two photographer well oiled machine is rare. And should be costing at least $5000.00+ in any market. 

Post # 13
Member
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@starz88962:  that’s really easier for one photographer to do. The walk down an aisle is long. I stand a few feet from the groom. It’s just a matter of a pivot!:) 

Post # 14
Member
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@seAprilbride:  any solo shooter not shooting to two cards at once is playing with fire! 

Post # 15
Member
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

One things as well to realize with two shooters is just because a second shooter shot something doesn’t mean a solo shooter couldn’t have shot it as well.  You just have to move. One shooter hustling vs two shooters standing in one spot only convering one angle is much the same thing. In a church I’ll get the aisle, sides, balcony, etc. Quiet shoes, black clothes, yoga. One stealthy shooter can do wonders for photo journalistic work. 

Post # 16
Member
8483 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2014

I think in most cases two would be the best option. Theres the fact that something could happen to one person equipment, but theres also so you can get more shots. You could have someone with you getting ready and someone with the groom. You could get a frontal shot of you walking down the aisle and also a shot of the groom seeing you for the first time. 

That said, we’re only having one. We were more comfortable budget wise with just one, plus we have a pretty small guest list. 

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