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The Friday Fight-Out: Second Shooter Vs Shooting Solo

In yesterday’s photographer’s thoughts we discussed the varying choices that different photographers make regarding having (or not having) a second shooter to help photograph the wedding. It was intriguing to see how many felt strongly that a second shooter is necessary as well as those who were equally passionate that solo shooting is the way forwards. Now as our regular readers know whenever we have a difference of opinion we put it to the debate right here, in the Friday Fight-Out ring. So here goes:

Second Shooter Vs Shooting Solo


In the Red Corner, charged with fighting the second shooter cause, although if she called her own photography partner a second shooter she would doubtless swiftly find herself becoming a solo shooter, it’s Dom “The Tog Bride”

In the Blue Corner, charged with battling for the solo shooter cause, after all those pesky photographers don’t half get in the way of the video 😉  it’s Matt “The Gormless Groom


second shooter vs shooting solo

Dom: Having a second shooter allows for additional angles to be captured that otherwise would be missed and allows for more options when choosing the final photographs.

Matt: Some couples are very shy and don’t like the idea of having an additional photographer following them around. With just one photographer it might be easier to help them to just relax and forget the camera is there.

Dom: Having a second shooter gives the prime shooter more flexibility and allows them to be more experimental with their shots knowing that there’s a second photographer capturing all the ‘safe’ shots.

Matt: With just one photographer you know that the photographs you receive will be of a consistent style, whereas unless a second shooter has been shooting alongside the prime photographer for many years they are unlikely to have such a unified style.

Dom: With just one shooter it often means you have to choose to have either the bride or groom’s preparations photographed, whereas with a second shooter involved it’s possible to split up and cover both. There are also other times during the day where splitting up can also be really useful, for example whilst the prime photographer is perhaps taking some portraits and group shots the second shooter can continue to capture all the candid guest shots or make sure that all of the details are photographed.

Matt: Where a second shooter is not as used to working with one particular prime photographer they may not have a full understanding of how that photographer works and can easily end up getting in the way and ruining shots rather than adding additional ones.

Dom: However much photographers allow extra time for travel or work through illness there is always a small possibility that they could be delayed or could be unwell on the day, but with a second shooter there you know that whatever happens a photographer will be there to make sure nothing is missed.

Matt: In the build up to the wedding the couple normally have the chance to get to know their photographer a little and become comfortable being photographed by them, however if the second shooter is a freelancer just brought in for the day the couple may never have the chance to meet them beforehand or decide whether they are comfortable with them.

Dom: If (heaven forbid) anything went wrong with a card you still have the second shooter’s shots from that section of the day so nothing is missed completely

Matt: Some photographers just work best alone and find it distracting having someone else looking to them on the day and perhaps taking them out of the action.

The Friday Fight-Out: second shooter vs shooting solo

So those are our thoughts but where do you stand? Leave a comment to join the debate or place your votes in our poll below!

Morning / Early Afternoon Vs Late Afternoon Wedding

Photographs by York Place Studios

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