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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk
Thread started 06 May 2009 (Wednesday) 16:29
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how much to pay second shooter/assistant?

 
tommyqh
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367 posts
Joined Nov 2008
San Francisco, CA
May 06, 2009 16:29 |  #1

how much do you guys normally pay a second shooter/assistant for weddings?


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tim
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Joined Nov 2004
Wellington, New Zealand
May 06, 2009 17:14 |  #2

I started my assistant on 1.5X minimum wage, then increased it a little as she become useful. Minimum wage here is a wage you can live on, but you can't live overly well. My assistant is a photography student, the experience and business knowledge I give them is far more valuable than the $.


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tommyqh
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367 posts
Joined Nov 2008
San Francisco, CA
May 06, 2009 23:17 |  #3

tim wrote in post #7870936external link
I started my assistant on 1.5X minimum wage, then increased it a little as she become useful. Minimum wage here is a wage you can live on, but you can't live overly well. My assistant is a photography student, the experience and business knowledge I give them is far more valuable than the $.

hmmm well i really don't have the time to teach someone. not looking to take anyone under my wing. i haven't been in the industry that long myself, so i don't think i have the right to teach anyone as i'm learning myself. sure i offer advice here and there but would never take the liability of mentoring.

would prefer someone who can pick up and go.

minimum here is 7.25 i think...so 10.85 an hour. i guess that's reasonable...


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purd002
Member
61 posts
Joined Apr 2005
Indiana
May 06, 2009 23:28 |  #4

How much you pay depends on what you need from the second. At $10/hour you're going to definitely be getting somebody that is somewhat inexperienced and could be a crapshoot. That works fine if you are only looking for a cheap insurance policy. If you're looking for someone to actually contribute to your final product you might have to invest more in somebody better. I second shoot almost exclusively and contribute (and get paid) more than that, but i have experience, get consistent results and have my own pro equipment.




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tim
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May 06, 2009 23:30 |  #5

To give me post context, I wanted an extra pair of hands and a driver. Since they were ok at taking photos I gave them a raise. I supply 2nd shooters equipment.


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Peacefield
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NJ
May 07, 2009 06:52 |  #6

As a practice, I try to bring an assistant but do not work with a second shooter. I have twin 20 year old sons still working their way through school who are more than happy to spend a day asssting their old man. Depending on the length of day and the price of the package, I may pay them $70 - $100. They help me carry bags, organize people, straighten dresses, make sure nothing gets lost or stolen, etc., but do not shoot.

My pacakges tend to be in the $1,500 range and my clients are not typically inclined to pony up the $500 or so it would take to add a capable second shooter. And in my view, the only thing I would want another shooter for is to cover the groom's preparations if the couple are getting dressed at different locations. I have responded to the offers of a couple of CraigList wedding wannabes recently. Based on the work they showed me, they seem acceptably proficient. The couples are fully aware of the arrangement and know that they may get some additional shots that are worth keeping, they may get nothing. And I don't mind finding a little time before or after the day to share some insights with these people in exhcange for their time.


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egordon99
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Joined Feb 2008
Philly 'burbs
May 07, 2009 08:51 as a reply to Peacefield's post |  #7

My good friend also does the "part-time photo" thing, and she asked me to be a second shooter for a wedding the Fall. My "normal" rates are around $100/hour (although I don't bill it to the client like that...) so she's paying me $50/hour since I just have to show up and shoot (didn't have to procure the client, deal with them before/after...)




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