A second photographer is a great asset for a number of reasons. Primarily, if you like the reportage style, the second photographer is usually tasked with quietly circulating amongst the congregation during the group photography. This is where the “natural” images tend to be found. Because the primary photographer is dealing with the groups, the second photographer tends to go unnoticed, and can catch relatives laughing, or the children playing.
On a personal note, I’ve always loved the long aisle shot of the back of the dress during the service. I’ve found this type of image to be amongst the bride’s favourite images from the day. Once the primary photographer has taken up position at the front, they can’t move away. This is one of the many images that tends to be completely reliant on the second photographer.
There’s also the advantage of the second viewpoint, and this is apparent throughout the day. Getting ready, bride’s arrival, service, groups, speeches, cake cutting and first dance etc. The added benefit of a second viewpoint can’t be under estimated. Not to mention the increased number of images available to the couple.
The cost of an additional photographer is usually quite small, when compared to the initial cost, but the benefits are huge. It tends to mean an increase in image numbers by a further 50% or more. And these are images that otherwise, would have been missed.