Why You Should Consider Being a Second Shooter at a Wedding

If you are starting to think about Second Shooting, but aren’t sure where to start or you want some more information first, this blog is for you!

We all know that weddings are one of the most important events in a person’s life. So, many couples invest significant time, effort and money into making their special day perfect. Obviously! Because of this, the demand for professional wedding photographers has increased significantly over the years. While some photographers work alone, many choose to work with a second shooter. Which is someone who can shoot some of those other angles, candid’s or anything the main photographer can’t do all alone. If you’re interested in photography and are considering becoming a second shooter at weddings, below are some reasons why you should go for it! 

Working as a second shooter at weddings gives you an amazing opportunity to gain experience and improve your photography skills alongside a professional photographer! A second shooter is responsible for capturing candid shots, assisting with lighting, and taking creative shots from different angles. This role allows you to learn from a more experienced photographer, observe their techniques, and gain a better understanding of the wedding photography industry. This is truly an incredible way to start becoming more serious about your photography work! 

Also, working as a second shooter provides an opportunity to build your portfolio! Which is something you will all need as a professional photographer, and it is hard to get a portfolio without any true experience! As a second shooter, you will be able to take the photos that you took and you can use for your portfolio. This can help you attract clients in the future, and it is a great way to establish yourself in the wedding photography industry and build a reputation as a talented photographer. 

Still not convinced on starting your work in this role? Well, I will give you another good reason to do it! Being a second shooter can be financially rewarding. Yay! We all love that, don’t we? While the primary photographer will typically charge a higher fee, the second shooter will also receive payment for their services. This is a great way to generate extra income, especially if you’re passionate about photography and enjoy working at weddings. 

Y’all, being a second shooter can be a lot of fun! I know it sounds like a lot of work for not being the main photographer, but it is SO helpful for you as you build your business. You meet new people, make connections and get better at your job each time! Weddings are happy occasions, and being part of a team that creates memories that will last a lifetime can be a very rewarding experience. You’ll have the opportunity to interact with guests, capture beautiful moments, and be part of a special day in people’s lives! 

This isn’t only a job for people who want to be a professional photographer. This is for anyone wanting to get better at photography. Whether you’re an aspiring photographer or a seasoned professional, working as a second shooter can be so fulfilling! 

This is also a great way to add that extra dough especially if you want to start getting new equipment that may not be in your budget right now. But it can be! Below are some things you can do to save your money for to further your business, and how to make that happen. 

  1. New Camera

Oh man, I’m sure you are itching for that new camera that you have been window shopping for! Right now, B and H is selling a Sony a7 II Mirrorless Camera with 28-70mm Lens and Accessories Kit for $998.00 so let’s break it down on how quickly you can get that Sony in your hand! If you start about 2 months before busy wedding season, and at least book 3 second shooting gigs at $400 a wedding day, you will fully cover the new camera body. When you think about a photographers wedding season, they could easily have a wedding every weekend; sometimes two in a weekend! So… all I am hearing is cha-ching for you! 

2. Supplement your photography income so you can become a full-time photographer!

This is all I want for you! I love being full time! So, let’s talk numbers. There are some amazing freebies that you can play around with. To create your budget/financial plan, put in how much you need to make in a month, and then start breaking it down. If you are charging $250 for a session (which is very reasonable for just starting out) imagine being able to charge for two session fees for second shooting a wedding, and then not having to edit the images right away so you can focus on those other sessions that you have booked out! 

3. Rent, bills, and life! 

When I started my photography business in 2017, I was paying $450 for rent in Billings Montana. That meant that if I just did at least ONE wedding, that I would fully pay for my rent! And then anything else was covered by my part time job! 

I hope this helped you decide on whether or not you should dive into second shooting! I started doing this early in my career, and I am SO happy I did. For so many reasons including connections, building my portfolio, getting better at photography, and the financial fun! Follow my page if you want to continue learning about it. 🙂

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