The scariest thing to happen to me during a shoot wasn’t my knee dislocating. It was my camera breaking, right as my couple was about to go frolicking in the ocean in their wedding clothes. Instantly I felt sick to my stomach, my heart lept into my chest, and the sweat rolling down my face had nothing to do with the hot Mexican sun.
But instead of calling a halt to the session, I walked over to the camera bag, pulled out my backup camera, and kept shooting, without them ever noticing.
(Ok, to be totally honest I think I went and took Rob’s camera and made him walk over to camera bag, because I’m kind of a diva like that sometimes. But if I was by myself that’s how things would have gone!)
However things went down, the lesson is simple: if you’re doing a professional shoot (and I count shoots that aren’t for money per se, but for portfolio building or trade of service in there too), you need backup.