Valuable Tips On Being An Awesome Second Shooter

Rancho Las Lomas Wedding Photography - Reception in El Teatro

Rancho Las Lomas Wedding Photography - Reception in El Teatro

A few weeks ago my buddy Tommy, from Thomas Pellicer, texted me and without many details given he asked if I was available to help him out for an upcoming wedding at Rancho Las Lomas.  My schedule was open and I quickly told him, "I'm in!" I've known Tommy for a few years now and this was our first time working together. It was a pretty cool day as he asked me to hang out with the groom and groomsmen and cover their details and formal images prior to the wedding ceremony, while he was with the bride and bridesmaids.

Groomsmen

Groomsmen

Groomsmen Candids

Groomsmen Candids

WHY WE OCCASIONALLY SECOND SHOOT FOR OTHERS

As Gina and I primarily shoot weddings as lead photographers, we occasionally work with our colleagues to help them out when they need it. We do this for a few reasons:

  • As lead photographers, we all need help at one time or another and as our schedule permits we lend a hand to support each other
  • It challenges us to work on our photojournalistic techniques without the pressure to capture the main events during the wedding
  • The lead photographer is only one person, so having a second set of eyes allows the client to get some awesome images from different angles
Groomsmen at the tool shed

Groomsmen at the tool shed

Villa overlooking El Teatro

Villa overlooking El Teatro

Pre Wedding Bridal Prep With Her Watchful Ringbearer 

Pre Wedding Bridal Prep With Her Watchful Ringbearer 

SIX VALUABLE TIPS TO BE AN AWESOME SECOND SHOOTER

Without further ado, here are some valuable second shooter tips I gathered from my most recent experience:

  1. Make the primary photographer's job easier; don't be too proud to carry their bags/equipment
  2. Set your ego aside and shoot what the lead photographer needs you to cover
  3. When shooting in the same space, shoot with a different lens to give the client a different perspective
  4. Be ready to shoot as if you were the primary photographer
  5. Self-motivation is key; anticipate the emotions during each part of the day as the primary photographer will most likely be capturing the essential parts of the day
  6. It's common courtesy to ask if you intend to use them for your own portfolio
Pre Wedding Groom Prep

Pre Wedding Groom Prep

Pre Wedding Groom Prep

Pre Wedding Groom Prep

Custom Suit for the Groom

Custom Suit for the Groom

Pre Wedding Groom Details

Pre Wedding Groom Details

The Wedding Ceremony in El Teatro

The Wedding Ceremony in El Teatro

DETAILS AND THE "IN BETWEEN" MOMENTS

Primary photographers rely on second shooters to get the details the bride and groom have taken countless hours and effort to make sure everything is perfect for their day. 

By the way, how cool are those personalized glass flasks for the groomsmen?

Dessert Table

Dessert Table

Sweet and Saucy Shop Three Tiered Cake

Sweet and Saucy Shop Three Tiered Cake

Cocktail hour outside of the Grand Salon

Cocktail hour outside of the Grand Salon

The newlyweds introduced as husband and wife

The newlyweds introduced as husband and wife

Anticipate the raw emotions throughout the day to help tell the full story

Anticipate the raw emotions throughout the day to help tell the full story

Again, these are based on my experience and I hope these help you to become a better second shooter. I also want to say thanks again to Tommy for letting me hang out and rock this beautiful wedding!

Much love and Congrats again to Roxanne and Michael!



Chris Holt

Phillips Ranch, CA, USA



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