Thursday, 17 March 2016

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF NORWICH EXHIBITORS: Benjamin Mathers Photography



Benjamin Mathers Photography is a business of two halves, half creative, documentary photography and half a travelling photo booth www.thetravellingbooth.co.uk. And at MOST CURIOUS Benjamin is offering two different special deals too!

First up £50 off the regular price of the booth and a free leather guest book for all bookings made at the fair.

And with Benjamin Mathers Photography he is offering a 20% discount on albums for people he met at the fair if they book by the end of March. That's a potential saving of £70 on medium albums and £120 on the top notch, leather bound, Giclee printed, fine art albums. Pretty good guys, get involved!


And in the mean time, we asked Benjamin what's making him tick right now, and how he creates such a soft, natural style...read on...

What is a typical Benjamin Mathers day?

This one's tricky, there is no typical day as such, every day is pretty different, which I love. I have three kids, one boy at school, one boy at nursery and one girl still nursing! So together they seem to take up a lot of time in the morning. When I get home after the morning rush I have a coffee, check my emails and catch up with admin and all that boring stuff. If it's the summer and we have loads of editing to do we then crack on with that. My wife, Eve, does most of the editing so we can share the childcare. Eve is the Creative Director, she's a fabric artist and has a great eye for design, it's great having her perspective on the work and adding her creative input. Some days we're designing albums, other days we're getting work ready for print or wrapping things up to send off. Some days I'm out meeting clients or tinkering with our photobooth.

And then the best days I'm checking over gear, cleaning lenses and sensors, formatting memory cards, getting dressed up and heading out the door. These are by far the most tiring days, it's amazing just how much energy is spent photographing a wedding. Being 'on it' for 10 hours or so, capturing every moment and hardly sitting down once! I normally don't get home until 10pm or 11pm depending on times and locations, then I get my days work uploaded and backed up then sit down and have a beer or glass of wine... (I always feel a bit jealous seeing everyone having a drink and partying, I secretly just want to join in, I love a good party!) Then I go to bed and hopefully, if I don't have another wedding on the next day, I have a good old fashioned family day where I don't think about doing any work once, ideally going to the beach and getting in the sea, or having a long walk in the woods and definitely having a roast dinner!


What's been inspiring you right now?

I've never been a massive one for following trends, at least not mainstream trends. I guess with three kids and two businesses I don't get much time for searching blogs and pinterest, shops and magazines. When I'm not sitting at a computer I like to be doing stuff, being outside and making things. In fact I think it's important as a photographer not to be spending too much time looking at other peoples photos and weddings. I mean obviously I do from time to time but I'm not obsessive about it. I get a general idea about what I want to do and go from there, trying to put my own experience and view of the world into it.

Every year I do this I feel as though I'm coming more into my own. At first it was simply about seeing other people's styles and seeing how I could emulate it, but there comes a point where you need to go off on your own. So what inspires me? The world. Seriously, seeing the seasons change, being outside in wild places, walking down streets and appreciating aesthetics that are perhaps not classically beautiful but which I think look cool. This year I want to shoot a lot wider, I want my portraits to be even more 'environmental', I don't mean green but rather I want people to be placed in there surroundings, that's what I find interesting, my job is not to create scenes but rather to frame them. I have a new lens which I'm very excited about using. I've always been a prime only kinda guy but I was so interested in seeing the new Sigma 24-35mm f2 zoom (which is pretty fast – good in low light and creates nice out of focus blurry interest...) I had to give it a try. I've got a couple of engagement shoots coming up and I'm going to use this lots, getting closer to the subject and getting more in the shot.





Who is the ideal Benjamin Mathers couple?

I LOVE my wedding couples! They are all great! I tend to find that people choose me to photograph their weddings because they like my style and want something more natural and unobtrusive. We're almost always working from the same hymn sheet, so to speak.
My number one ideal quality in a couple is love. I mean obviously, but if a couple feel comfortable together then they're easy to photograph. Often I get couples or individuals saying 'we hate having our photo taken', but then when we come to the couple shots, or engagement shot, or whatever, it goes amazingly well because the two people are so in love that they feel and look completely comfortable together. Then my job is easy – I photograph them. This is as simple as it gets.
Secondly it's really important that we get along, I mean I get on with everyone basically but we need to have a similar vision. If you're looking for high fashion / OK Magazine type stuff then I'm probably not for you. If you're into aesthetics, clean images, nature, reality then I could be your man.
My ideal wedding? Well something interesting and unique I guess, but then aren't all weddings these days? I love the way weddings have become a creative outlet for people, it's not all top hats and tails any more. And that's what I love about my job, seeing what people create to celebrate their love for each other and then capturing it forever on film (or silicon as the case may be...)


2 comments:

  1. Great work Benjamin Mathers. Beautiful clicks.

    Sam - Rustic Wedding Invitations

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