7 Awesome Examples Of How We Use Two Photographers

Will PursellBlog, Wedding Planning, Wedding posts

2 close up first dance

Why have two photographers capture your wedding?


There are so many ways that wedding photographers work during events. Here are a few reasons we always use two photographers during a wedding:

  1. One of us can get a creative risky shot while one of us can get the traditional angle.
  2. Many of the moments only happen once, and there are a lot of factors that can happen during a wedding. Guests can get in the way, the subjects head might be turned the wrong way, the lighting might be wrong, the moment might be happening on the other side of the room of the photographer, are a few examples that come to mind. Having a second photographer increases the chance of getting that moment by 50%.
  3. Having two photographers mean we have to move around much less during candid events, making us less intrusive to you and your guests, so you can forget we are there.
  4. Time is often a constraint during any of the posed photos. Having two photographers gives the option for two completely different looks seconds apart. It also helps make everything move along much more efficiently with lighting, logistics, and gear.

Example 1. The first look at the Sea to Sky Gondola

For this example, we were on this epic platform overlooking the mountains and ocean at the Sea to Sky gondola. Will went with the groom and Lauren went with the girls to ensure we all met up and the logistics for the first look worked out. Two photographers are almost essential for the logistics of an intimate first look to manipulate the situation for an amazing photo. For something like this, we do some light-guiding telling the groom where to stand, and then the bride gave him a cue when she wanted him to turn around.

Will was behind the bride with a wide-angle lens to capture to groom's reaction. He wanted to have the bride in the foreground to create some context, and the mountains, ocean and leading lines to add to the scene. Lauren was way off to the side away from the platform with our longest zoom lens to zoom in on the emotion. She tends to shoot brighter which looks great for those candid moments to focus on the reaction.

There are lots of challenges that could have happened while capturing these photos: The bride could have covered the groom's entire reaction, tourists could have walked into the photo, lighting could have changed, the groom could have turned away from the camera, etc. Having two photographers gave us a 50% more chance of getting this awesome reaction. When everything works out great, you get two completely different photos that come together to tell an amazing story.

Example 2. Epic first dance photos


We always look for different and unique viewpoints for every photo we take during the day. At the Hycroft Manor, there are a few balconies that overlook the courtyard. Will decided to go for a bit more of a risky shot with a unique viewpoint.

Potential challenges for the balcony photos: It takes a decent amount of time to climb up the stairs, doors could be locked inside the venue, guests could cover the couple from that viewpoint, our light might not hit them correctly, the dancing couple may not face towards the camera, the potential of missing guests reactions or nice close-ups.

For this set of photos, Will stayed up top as Lauren hovered around the crowd. Will had 2 lights set up to focus light on the couple, while the guests and venue blend into the background. The close-up and directly above photos are taken milliseconds apart. These two perspectives give you two completely different looks which add to the story.

Example 3. Dramatic/candid


This is a classic Pursell Photography style portrait photo that you can expect. Will using his creative lighting to bring full attention to the couple while making the mountains and sky blend into the background. Lauren is holding Will's light to make sure it doesn't fall over, ensure it's pointed in the right direction, and quick to make slight adjustments, so we can make the shoot run smoothly (Most outdoor lighting scenarios require an assistant ensure we work fast and efficiently), while capturing some beautiful, natural light closeups of the couple with her zoom lens. It ends up giving you the best of both worlds seconds apart.

Example 4. The 360 capture of the ceremony


This is a typical setup we might take to capture emotions all around the room. Lauren was upfront able to capture a scene-setting photo of the bride coming down the aisle, close up of the groom, grandma and mom's reaction and bridesmaids crying. Meanwhile, Will was hiding behind all the guests, capturing the bridal party before they start walking down the aisle, as well as the groom's first look over the bride's shoulder. Without two photographers, we would most likely be forced to stick to one angle, and just photograph the bride coming down the aisle as we would be worried we might miss a shot. With the two of us, we knew one of us would get a good photo of the bride coming down which gave us the flexibility to also focus on other awesome moments!

Example 5. The "landscape" shot with the nice clean classic closeup

Most of the time during portraits there is not a lot of time. We also prefer our couples to spend as much time enjoying their actual wedding and not standing around posing for photos. So we try and work efficiently to ensure you get the most bang for the time given. The couple wanted to capture "a very Vancouver scene" along with the fall colours. Like most Vancouver couples, they spend a lot of time on the seawall. So we took them to a spot that is a little quieter and away from the crowds. Will used some light to make the couple pop against the mountains, ocean, and bridge, while Lauren was on the zoom lens to the lower right of Will able to focus on the beautiful smiles of the couple as well as capture the autumn colours. These shots were taken seconds apart giving some pretty awesome variety in a short amount of time.

Example 6. Creative light along with must-have moments

Will wanted to make the couple pop on the dance floor while maintaining the ambiance of the venue. This particular lighting setup looked best mostly from this angle. We had Lauren move around the dance floor, ready for any key moments with a more flexible lighting setup. The bride wanted to get a good photo of the final dip which wasn't angled right for Wills's complex light setup. Lauren was able to move around and capturing the dip from the best angle possible.

Example 7. Accentuating the extreme weather


The couple wanted to get a few "Sunset photos" quickly during their reception. While the sun was nowhere to be seen, it was dumping snow! We ran out real quick to the front of their venue (Lil'Wat Cultural Centre in Whistler). This was Lauren's idea to have a nice clean contrast with the snow against the trees. Will jumped in with a light behind the couple to create a nice, dramatic photo lighting up the snow. These photos are taken seconds apart getting two unique looks and the best usage of our time. Winter wedding portraits are always short-lived due to cold, so we knew we had to work fast.

Is it worth having two photographers at my wedding?


Well, that's up to you. We think so as it gives so much more flexibility with the way we photograph. We have to move around less, we can get so much more creative with lighting, angles and the way we interact with our couples. Having two photographers is going to cost more but the trade-off is worth it to have the quality and variety of photos in our opinion.

Hire a Vancouver wedding photographer with two photographers!


If you love our photos get in touch with us about your wedding! We look forward to hearing from you!