Picking the Right Images for Your Portfolio

If you have a second shooter or associate profile, picking the right images to represent you can make or break your chances of getting hired. Make no mistake, studios that will potentially hire you care way more about you nailing focus, exposure, and capturing moments throughout the day than they do with seeing how you edit those same images. Why? Because you won’t be the one editing them. When picking your images, put yourself in the shoes of the studios that will be looking to hire someone. Make sure your images truly represent your body of work, not just the images that you love the most. As a photographer that has hired second shooters many times in the past, I know that too often photographers only show the cream of the crop images that have been meticulously edited and not the ones which are the bulk of their delivered images.

If you have a second shooter profile, you’ll want to show images that are supportive and complementary in nature. No need to include all of your most epic shots of the bride and groom, wedding parties, and other traditionally lead-shooter-centric shots. Why? Because you won’t be fulfilling that role on the day of the wedding or shoot. Showing top images you’ve taken for past second shooting roles is a great idea because it can show studios what you’re capable of in the same situation. Put yourself in the shoes of those you’re hoping to get hired by and think of the type of images they would want to see.

If you have an associate shooter profile and aim to get hired for weddings or other lead shooter roles, including variety from all parts of the day to showcase the range of your ability. Showing images consistent to your shooting style and approach is best because it will help the studio determine if your photographic approach is in alignment with what they need. If the studio has a photojournalistic approach, they aren’t going to want to hire an associate that shows tons of posed group shots and portraits. The opposite is true as well, so rather than trying to appeal to everyone, showcase images that truly represent the type of approach you take. The studio will be happier with their results and you’ll build a reputation for being a “go-to” person for that style. Ultimately, the images you put in your portfolio are intended to show your range, consistency, and approach to photography, not to flaunt your favorite award-winning shots that don’t represent your body of work.