(Closed) Should I hire a second photographer?

posted 6 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
Member
1676 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

Holy crow, that sounds expensive!! I would see whether you can break your contract with first photographer before having two photographers there. The other thing is that there’s only so many really good angles to shoot really good pictures at – you might find that they’re constantly trying to stand at the same place for the money shot. I would have the one really great photographer there instead of trying to not hurt the other photographer’s feelings.

Post # 4
Member
4676 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

Firstly I would check your contract.  When I was doing wedding photography I had it in my contract that I am the offical wedding photographer and hiring another would be a breach of contract.  

I would be worried of the two getting in eachothers ways all night.  I have photographed weddings with over anxious relatives with cameras and they get in my way, and even that can be anoying.   Plus I always worry about guests feeling like they are in a fish bowl with so many photographers walking around trying to take their pictures.  The guests might not understand that they are from two different companies, and often can be amprehensive to be photographed the first time.  

Instead do you have someone that you trust to get some of these getting ready pics, and pics when the photog takes off? Or maybe a college student looking for some experience to fill in at the times that the photog is not there?  Or could you talk to your photog about paying for extra coverage?  

Post # 5
Member
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

Usually most photographers have in their contract that they are the only photographer that day. I would assume yours probably does as well. If you aren’t happy with your photographer, I say get a new one. However, I don’t know any professional that doesn’t have them being the only photographer in their contract, meaning you would void your contract with your photographer. :-/

Post # 6
Member
4193 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry

A number of the photographers I’m looking at have options to add a second shooter/assistant. That could be less than the cost of another photographer outright, and there wouldn’t be any issues with photographer #1. You could have photographer #2 for a certain numbers of hours (3 or 4 instead of 6)

I’d talk to your photographer and let him know the type of photos you’d like for your wedding day. If you want more traditional photos, tell him!

Post # 8
Member
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

Well his contract might not, however the other photographer you want to hire will probably be against it. 

If your only concern is you want more looking at the camera, traditional pics, most photographers get more of those at the weddings. If you aren’t happy at all with him, I would say getting a new photographer completely if you can. It would be cheaper to just loose your deposit with him, then to pay him everything & get another photographer. June is still enough away especially in NC, most photographers have dates open, and most are willing to give deals since it’s closer! If your happy with him though otherwise, just let him know you want some more traditional images, and just pay him the extra hours.

Otherwise, your probably going to have two unhappy photographers at your wedding, not doing their best work.

Post # 10
Member
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

I would say it’s somewhat average, but it’s dependent on the photographer. For most of our weddings 6 hours is plenty, but we have an 8 hour package as well because 6 isn’t enough for some weddings. We have only have maybe 1 bride need more than 8.

However, $400 is a bit more than I have heard of a lot of photographers charging & that was kind of strange to not have it in his contract.

Was his retainer much more than $800, since it sounds like you want around 2 more hours? If not would it be more worth it to find a cheaper photographer? If it’s not worth it I say just pay it and book the extra hours. Did he have any more packages, usually packages are cheaper than paying hourly rates?

Post # 11
Member
882 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I know a lot of photogs don’t stay the entire night..there is a lot of dancing time that they get. As for the shots you want—you should make a list of “must get shots” and send to phorographer before hand and let him know you absolutly want every shot on the list. List formal portraits with everyone you want (like bride, groom, maternal grandparents; bride, groom, first cousins, groom, college buddies; ect…that way he is aware of and in charge of gathering everone and getting the shots taken. As a professional working for you…he should want to make you happy and do what you want!  

Post # 13
Member
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

Usually it just means you lose the $500. Which basically would mean you didn’t lose anything. I just think if you can find someone you love & will be able to stay the hours you need, that would be your best option. If you are THRILLED with your engagement pics, I wouldn’t risk not being thrilled with your wedding photos. You don’t want to not love, love, love your wedding photos. 

Plus 1 hour for formal photos is usually a bit long, most the time it’s around 40 minutes max. 

Post # 15
Member
1314 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2006

@Bichon Frise:  I don’t know the specifics of his contract, but usually most photographers will have non-refundable retainers that specifically apply to having held a date for you and turned business away.  The engagement session may be a separate thing all together.  Personally as a photographer I would never want to shoot a wedding for a client who wasn’t excited about my style.  In your particular scenario if I were him I would not refund your retainer, but I’d probably let you go and call it a wash.  $400 might seem like a high hourly rate to you, but unless he hid his pricing structure from you at the time you hired him I don’t have a ton of sympathy.  You essentially knew what you were getting into with it.  And yes 6 hours is definitely on the short side, most of our weddings are 8-10 hours in coverage.

You could try and communicate your issues to him and see what he says.  We approach most of our weddings with a documentary approach, and it’s evident in our portfolio.  We don’t do a whole lot of “smile and look at the camera” stuff, but we’d certainly accommodate a few (and have) if the client communicates to us.  You definitely shouldn’t be afraid to communicate with him.

As far as hiring a separate photographer, even if the first photographer doesn’t address it in his contact you should talk to him about it first.  Springing that on a photographer on your wedding day is going to make things super weird for all parties concerned, and isn’t really fair to either photographer.  It’s not really even in your best interest, you want your photographers to feel as good about you as you do about them.  You will get better results, I guarantee it.

Post # 16
Member
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

Oh that makes more sense! That’s still pretty long in my opinion when you only have 6 hours, but that’s photographer specific as well.

Personally if you feel that way I really think you should find a new one. If one of our clients felt that way about us, I would want them to tell us and to get someone new, I would hate for them not to LOVE us. I think if your honest with him as well, he will completely understand & wouldn’t be mad or anything. 

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