Kristy and Ryan were married on the 28th March, 2015. Their wedding was held at the stunning Singlefile Wines just outside of Denmark. Honestly, this place is stunning; long rows of vines, tall trees and a picturesque lake. It pretty much ticks all of the boxes!

Kristy and Ryan were lovely, graceful and unassuming people.  To top it off, they were awesome in front of the camera – although they might argue with this :-). It can be easy to underestimate how hard it is being photographed, and I’d like to think that Kristy and Ryan felt comfortable with the process. Their natural and relaxed photos are a testament to this and a great reflection of who they are. I truly enjoy making it as easy as possible on my couples and watching them relax during the day. Making people feel comfortable in front of the camera is great reward for me – almost as much as delivering awesome wedding photos!

Celebrant:  Maggie Anderson – Wedding Gown:  Pallas CoutureCeremony and Reception: Singlefile WinesCatering:  Silas at Pepper and SaltParty Hire:  Albany Event Hire – Wedding Planner:  Jo from Eclectic EventsFlowers:Lindy from Lush Floral – Hair: Lauren Gutherie – Makeup: Brittney Hansen South West Makeup

Wedding photography comes in all shapes and sizes, with different coverage times and package inclusions. Choosing your photographer as one of your most trusted wedding vendors can be a really tricky process to navigate. And of course, there are no ‘standards’ across the industry, which can make it all the more difficult comparing photographers. Some packages include a second wedding photographer, some don’t.

So, do I need a second photographer at my wedding?

I’ve come across this questions a lot recently and I thought I would share my thoughts on this topic, from my point of view, based on my own experience photographing a large number of weddings.

In this article, it is my aim to provide you with a little more information to help guide your decision making process regarding the necessity of a second photographer at your wedding.

But let me give you the short answer: I believe that 95% of the time, it isn’t necessary, and most weddings I cover, don’t require a second shooter.

Let me explain 🙂

Your timeline often progesses in such a way that allows a single shooter like me, to cover all aspects of your amazing day. From the boys lounging around with a few beers, or suiting up in their jackets, to the bridal prep at the girl’s house, with final touches to hair and make up, pretty detail shots and some awesome portraits.

After these initial moments, I head off to the venue to meet and photograph the boys standing around waiting for the bride (often nervously) greeting guests and shaking hands.

Then comes the big moment of your arrival, where I photograph you getting out of your car, walking down the aisle, and greeting your partner under the arbour or at the altar.

From here, your day rolls on in a similar fashion, with me, quietly and efficiently moving around, photographing all of the special moments of your day. Capturing (and often sharing in) the laughs, tears and shared moments.

So why do people often recommend a second wedding photographer? Let’s look at five of the main reasons people tell you that a second photographer can be a worthwhile investment.

#1 – I’ll get more images

This is a bit of a yes and no, type situation. At a wedding, I shoot a LOT of images. I usually give my lovely clients around 30% of what I shoot, which often means approximately 600+ quality, original images! That’s a huge amount of culling and editing that happens after the day. Adding a second photographer means that a tighter edit is required, otherwise you could be overloaded with images. This is not good thing and it can actually be very tough for clients to sort through all of the images and then identify what the best images are. It’s the photographers job choose and deliver the best images of the day.

Not only that, but there is a very real possibility that by delivering more images of a lesser quality, it will detract from your overall visual story. Quantity does not always equal quality.

Ask yourself – How many images do you actually need to tell your story, or to fill an album, or to hang on the wall?

#2 – Who is looking at how my dress is falling and if it’s sitting correctly?

This really is a team effort. I’m always on the look out for how to make you guys look your absolute best. Here though, your bridesmaids are key. These are the people that know you the best. They know how you should look, and how you want to be represented. Let’s all work together!

#3 – Two photographers means less chance of missing ‘the shot’

There are high quality, award winning photographers that I know, that could never photograph a wedding. Yes, it’s true! All because of the huge amount of pressure during the day – after all, you only get one chance to make it great. And there are other very talented photographers that I know of, that would never photograph a wedding solo!  It’s also true that a lot of wedding photographers work together for their own comfort and piece of mind – so that it’s easier for them during the day.

I have a huge amount of photographic experience – honestly it’s true. I have photographed weddings and news assignments internationally, nationally and for many varied publications. Working at ‘The West Australian Newspaper’ I lost count of the international assignments I was sent on. The main reason that I was trusted for these assignments was for the simple reason that I could be counted on to deliver.

At your wedding I’m always working hard for you. I’m calm under pressure and know where to be during the important parts of your day. Head over to my weddings page to look at variety and types of images I typically deliver.

#4 – What about backup?

At every wedding I carry two professional cameras and a host of quality lenses. I have redundancy covered. And this year, I’m thinking of adding a third camera to the mix.

#5 – A Second photographer is another angle of the day?

As I carry two cameras on me at all times, one with a wide lens, the other with a long lens, I’m basically shooting two angles (wide and tight) most of the day. Not every photographer I know does this, some put down their camera to change lenses.

With a photography duo, there is often a lead photographer, and a second shooter. As a result, there needs to be a lot of communication between photographers on what to shoot and when, so that they don’t double up, or just as importantly, get in each other’s way. There is nothing worse than having another photographer standing in the background of your amazing photograph!

Have you ever used a second photographer?

I sure have. Recently, the lovely Jess from Three Little Kings helped me out at a big wedding. Jess worked with me to cover some group shots and to capture the guests mingling while I was away with the bridal party. On this occasion, the tight schedule didn’t allow me to do this solo.

So here are my final thoughts.

At most of my weddings, I have never felt the need for a second photographer.  I feel very comfortable working solo and capturing a huge variety of quality images for my clients.

I work efficiently, and quietly, providing gentle direction where necessary to get the best out of the day.

Also consider this; would a second person moving about with a camera actually distract the guests and detract from the day?

Finally; hire the photographer who’s work you love. It’s definitely better to have one photographer taking great pictures than two photographers taking OK pictures.

Sometimes, black and white images just work pefectly, and have the ability to tell a story beautifully. As much as I love colour, this blog Post of Jason and Yvonne’s Perth Wedding just begged to be published in black and white, with the odd splash of colour added to the mix for a little fun.

Married in March, 2015, I travelled the 4.5 hours north from Albany to be their Perth Wedding Photographer. Yvonne and Jason’s stylish wedding ceremony was held on the grassy lawns in Mosman Park, overlooking the Swan River. As with all Perth summers, it was a hot day. The leafy trees around Mosman Park provided some cool shade and much needed releif from the midday sun while I took their photos.

As with all blog posts, I try to keep my images to a minimum, but this can be a challenging feat. The number of pictures in this pos crept up quickly. After all, how many images do you really need to tell a story? Looking back at this wedding, which was photographed over two years ago, some images now stand out, that I didn’t really notice during the editing phase. I guess it’s the seperation of time that allows me to look upon the images with fresh eyes.  This is something I hope all of my amazing clients are able to do – to look back through their beautiful images with fresh eyes, picking out new favourites and to relive thier awesome day once more.

“Why should I hire a professional photographer?”

I’ve been asked this question so many times now. Especially since every aunt, uncle, brother, sister and family friend have a fairly expensive digital camera swinging from their shoulder. After all, their camera IS capable of taking great pictures. Technology is relatively cheap nowadays.

But it isn’t just the technology you are paying a professional for. It’s their experience, their ability to capture ‘the moment’, their customer care and understanding of post processing, composition, light and…

…wait a minute. Instead of listing of a huge variety of reasons as to ‘why’ a professional photographer is a fantastic investment, I thought I would show you why. This small selection of photos are all shot under ‘the exact same light’! As you can see, the photographer (yep, it was me) is constantly making really important creative decisions on how to provide an amazing and varied outcome for their clients. I consider my job to capture all of those amazing raw and real moments between my couples. But it’s also my job to make bad light look great, and good light look amazing!

And just case you wanted more information, and you happen to be a little OCD. like me, I’ve provide a little list below. It’s by no means the complete compendium of reasons you should hire a professional photographer, but it’s a great start – one that I made quickly over a beer at lunch. It’s true; Joe Taylor from Eclectic Events caught me in the act so you can ask her 🙂

Your professional photographer;

  • is experienced.
  • is a great technical and creative operator.
  • knows which lens to use when.
  • has situational awareness (knows where to be when).
  • has great understanding of composition.
  • has great understanding of light and how to use it.
  • carries backup gear.
  • should have a camera with dual camera slots for redundancy.
  • backs up properly after your wedding.
  • knows how to properly edit your images for print.
  • has public indemnity insurance.
  • has a great track record with clients.
  • is presentable at your wedding.
  • works well under pressure.
  • has a proper website.
  • can show you a history of great work.
  • has a network of other quality photographers to rely on (just in case).
  • makes you feel comfortable in front of the camera.
  • takes amazing images!
  • understands that YOU are their best client – and that doing a great job, keeps their business running.

Photography is my profession.  It’s a huge part of my life and who I am.  I’m not a weekend warrior and I’m proud that this my full time job.  So I hope this post is helpful in providing you with a little more information when it comes to choosing one of your most trusted vendors for your wedding.  And stay tuned for more tips to come!