Are Two Photographers Really Better Than One?
There are numerous conspiracy theories surrounding the death of professional wedding photography or the exponential race to the bottom as it’s known in the office. I’ve mentioned a few reasons for the decline here on the Secret Wedding Photographer blog, such as free engagement shoots. Some will claim that the big camera manufacturers don’t care about us pros and much in the same way that Apple virtually ditched development of professional workstations and support for professional applications (farewell Aperture) the big camera companies are now focused on making photography easier and cheaper for consumers. Let's leave for another post!
There is another far sinister factor - the Second Shooter, lurking in the background. I’m old enough to remember life before the second shooter. The days of a now mythical creature - the photographers assistant. A useful beast who knew his place. I even employed one once who didn't want to be a photographer. He liked assisting. Having an assistant is great. They carry your bags. Make sure everything is working. Move lights around and hold reflectors. They were a fantastic thing. Unfortunately, they are rarely seen now. Commercially no one will pay for them. They have been made extinct by the birth of the second shooter. Another disastrous idea for the wedding photography business.
Wedding Photography by Debbie Simister at Momentous Photography
Wedding photographer: Debbie Simister | Momentous photography
Photo Title: I Just Want To Be Around You!
Photo details: I love this dramatic circular entrance to the Orangery at Hanbury Manor in Hertfordshire. The strong architectural element required only the simplest of pose for the bride and groom, placement being key for the symmetry of the photograph.
The soft tones of the wall compliment the warm tones in the wedding gown, the trees, gates and path add depth.
This picture was 'a must' for Marion & Jamie's wedding album!
About the photographer: I am an accredited, professional photographer, qualified with both the British Institute of Professional Photographers and The Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers. My style mixes traditional fine art wedding photography, with a natural, reportage style, to convey emotion and atmosphere - to tell the story of your day! I ensure your wedding day is well prepared, captured with a relaxed atmosphere, within the time allowances specified and of course, creating amazing photography!
Photographer Details: Momentous Photography
Jason Pierce-Williams at Neopan Wedding Photography
Wedding photographer: Jason Pierce-Williams at Neopan Wedding Photography
Photo Title: Grumpy Old Vicar
Photo details: Got to love this shot of the vicar hamming it up with a half empty (or half full?) pint of guiness. A memorable sermon and a memorable gentleman.
About the photographer: I’ve been shooting for ten years. 300 and counting. I shoot an almost entirely natural and candid style of photography as I am also a street and portrait photographer.
Photographer Details: NeoPan Wedding Photography
It's the end of the line for professional wedding photographers
So that’s it, after 20 years as a professional wedding photographer and having covered countless weddings across the North West and the UK, I’ve decided this will be my last summer shooting weddings. Bookings for next year are looking a bit thin, to say the least, and to tell you the truth the business has changed so much in the last three years that I just can’t be bothered anymore. The increasingly demanding clients, the exponential growth in the number of photographers competing for bookings and the subsequent rapid decrease in fees means it’s just not worth it to me anymore. I just don’t like weddings that much that I’m prepared to bend over backwards to stay in the game. Maybe I’m just getting too old for it!
Twenty years ago, pre-digital and pre-internet, photography was so different to today. I got my work mainly through reputation and a bit of advertising. I had a small high street shop in the local town, and pretty much anyone who was getting married would pop in to have a look at some albums. There were probably about 4 or 5 of us nearby with similar setups, and we all knew each other, and if we were already booked, we’d recommend each other. Wedding photography was the best-kept secret in the industry. Not as glamorous and exciting as some other areas of photography - but we all earned a great living and had a nice lifestyle. Other photographers wouldn’t touch a wedding with a barge pole. It was either seen as too dull or too complicated. We had assistants in those days, not ‘second shooters’, tripods, Hasselblads, film and light meters. Photographers spent their time taking photographs rather than blogging about how lovely weddings are!