Why do we need 2 photographers at our wedding?

I’ve been asked these questions a few times: Why do we need 2 photographers at our wedding? And why do we need you all day? So I would like to tell you why and give you an idea of what it involves to photograph a wedding.

Here is a typical wedding day from my point of view (full day package):
Now, I know that every couple is different, but there is one thing I feel is important and one thing that will not change. Your photographs. These will tell the story of your day and capture the memories you will treasure. It will also be snapshots (frozen in time) of very special moments with special people and I do believe that your day should not be rushed and each moment should be enjoyed. So here goes: Lets say the wedding ceremony is at 2pm. I arrive where the bride will be getting ready at 12pm, no later that 2 hours before the ceremony. If the ceremony location is far away, I might arrive 2.5 hours before. I will photograph your dress and all the details of what you will be wearing. I like to take my time doing this because I treat your dress and accessories with respect and I like to take my time handling them. Then I will photograph you getting ready and everything that involves. At this point my 2nd shooter will be photographing the groom getting ready and/or they would head off to the church to photograph the groom waiting and get some photos of the groom and his best men and ushers. This is also a lovely time to get some candid shots of the guests arriving. At this point I would take some lovely photos of the bride and the bridesmaids and of the bride with her close family and those special moments. IF I did not have my 2nd shooter, I would be heading to the ceremony location and try to be there 30min before the bride arrives. So this means that I will miss precious time with the bride and her bridal party and there will be no photos of her in her dress with her bridesmaids before the ceremony.
So now it’s ceremony time. My 2nd shooter will help me cover different angles, I don’t like moving around to much during the ceremony, disturbing your guests. This will last about an hour and then everyone congratulating the happy couple outside the church and the confetti shot and it will be will be 30min later. So already its 4 hours into the day. By the time we get back to the venue, the venue will be ready for people to sit down. So there will be just enough time for group photos before the meal. My 2nd shooter will be waiting at the venue at this point, photographing some lovely candid photos, your table settings and cake while I do the group photos. But there will be no time for couple photos if you opt for the 5hour package. This is where you see that the {5 hour, 1 photographer} package will not suit this kind of wedding timeline. I will talk about that a bit later, but for now, lets get back to ‘this wedding day’ :) My 2nd shooter will also help me to capture all the laughter during the speeches and with larger weddings there are so much going on that you dont want to miss. After about 2 hours of meals & speeches, I will take the couple outside for their couple photos. This is normally the best time in the summer months (about 7-8pm depending on the time of year) where you get the gorgeous golden hour and this is perfect for stunning couple photos. But what if it’s the time of year when it’s dark at 5pm? Then I would suggest that you maybe ask for the meal to start at about 6pm and then we can go for the couple shoot before the meal and my 2nd shooter can get some lovely candid photos of the guests. After the meal and the couple photos the evening’s celebrations will start.

“So what sort of wedding/timeline will suit your 5 hour package?”
My 5 hour package is perfect for a wedding that is in one location. The bridal & groom prep, the ceremony and the reception is all in one location or walking distance from each other. It will also suit small weddings (50 guests or less). This will save a lot of time that would be spent on travelling between venues and there will be more time between the ceremony and the sit down meal. There will then be enough time for some couple photos while the guests are enjoying canapés and the group photos will not take as long.

If you really want to book me for 5 hours and your wedding is taking place in different locations, I would advise you to book a ‘Day After‘ or ‘Honeymoon‘ shoot with me. You can get dressed again in your wedding dress and we can then take some lovely romantic couple photos of the 2 of you :) You’ve spent so much time, effort and money on your wedding outfits that it would be a shame not to have gorgeous couple photos taken.

I know I have not covered all scenarios, but this shout give you a little idea of what goes into a wedding ‘behind the scenes’. Please feel free to ask me any questions you may have.

Heline x

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    Heline Bekker is a natural Couple , Maternity and Newborn photographer

    based in County Durham.

    She covers the following areas: Crook, Willington, Hunwick, Howden-le-Wear, Witton-le-Wear, Barnard Castle, Brancepath, Bishop Auckland, Staindrop, Wolsingham, Durham, Newton Aycliffe, Darlington, Stanhope, Hamsterley and all other areas of County Durham.