I'm going to be honest, I LOVE to work! In my dreamworld, I would have a wedding or other such photo session every weekend and portraits during the week, but for now, well, I am still reaching for that goal. HOWEVER, I am thrilled when I get to second shoot for another photographer. I get to spend the day doing something I love with someone who loves it, too! We share ideas, I learn things, sometimes they learn things. Most of all, I'm not sitting home on a weekend doing nothing, I am enjoying a wedding or other monumental event in someone's life and capturing the moments for them to enjoy for the rest of their lives. I would rather be WORKING than not working, so if I do not have my own booking, I am thrilled to second shoot for another photographer.
The photographers I love to work with are the ones who trust my vision, do not feel the need to micromanage me, and know that I will deliver a product to them to make their brand stand out. Second shooting is not about ME! It is about doing wonderful work to make someone else succeed as well. I am also very appreciative to use the work I do for them to enhance my own portfolio. I am always over the top about giving credit to the other photographer's company for the work. Second shooting is being their employee, again, it is NOT about ME!
Photography can be an incredible sharing community. There are some people who are intimidated by working with other people. Maybe they feel insecure about their own talent, and are constantly comparing themselves to someone else. Maybe they feel like they are going to lose clients if they work with someone else who they feel (or even know) is better. Or maybe, they can be humble, and enjoy personal growth, in any way/shape/form they are given. I try very hard not to compare myself or my work to others. One very wise piece of advice that I continue to use as a reminder to myself, "the only photographer one should compare oneself to is the photographer she/he was yesterday." I actually have tried to emulate other photographers' work that I admire, and found that for my own image, even if the style very closely resembled their work, did not appeal to me. I learned through that the appreciation for others' styles, and also an appreciation for the growth and formation of my own, unique style. Second shooting is a great way to learn about myself without the huge pressure of being the lead photographer.
I have learned many things while second shooting. I have learned some skills that I needed to work on from others who have more experience. I have learned about new equipment and changes in the industry. I have met many amazing people and gotten to share in the most important moments of their lives. I am not going to lie, I have enjoyed some pretty yummy meals and awesome cakes, too! And, because I am who I am, I have "Dougied" and "Cupid Shuffled" with the best of them. I have helped others, who in turn have helped me, and in the process, learned to appreciate my own work on another level by knowing that another professional has faith and trust in my work enough to hire and rehire me to supplement their own amazingly talented work.
I would like to thank first and foremost the very talented Jennifer Casey Scida of Jennifer Casey Photography for allowing me many opportunities for assisting her, as well as allowing me to rent her fantastic Annapolis studio. She is one of the best I have ever met! I also worked a fabulous wedding as second shooter for Lisa Banting Photography. Lisa is stellar, and I look forward to working with her much more in the future. Here in Virginia, I worked with the incredibly talented Siobahn Young Photography, and NatalieJayne Photography based in Richmond. I have enjoyed working with such incredible women, and am hoping to network and work with many more talented people in the industry in the near future, whether I am the lead photographer or assisting as second, I thank you all for helping me grow!