The Travelling Booth started life back in the summer of 2015. The initial idea was created by husband and wife team, us, Ben and Eve. Ben had been photographing weddings for a few years and was increasingly seeing photo booths making appearances. Unfortunately, these photo booths were often not in keeping with the effort and style put into the wedding’s planning. On further investigations it seemed that there was very little about in terms of photo booths appealing to a certain aesthetic standard!
The initial idea was to set up a digital camera inside an old large format bellows camera and to have an assistant photograph guests and have them printed out at the event. As the idea developed it seemed sensible to have the guests trigger the camera themselves, maybe they’d let loose a bit more without that human standing in front of them. There were many iterations, using various bits of software until finally we worked out how to do it. We spent a lot of time at auctions, car boots and charity shops, finding things to modify and make into the initial Travelling Booth.
And so it was born. The original Vintage Booth. It was, and still is, fairly complicated to set up, but it is cool and has integrity. The camera is triggered by a foot pedal, when the pedal is pressed the shutter opens, it takes a photo and the photo is sent to a printer. There is no screen, no distractions, just pure photographic magic.
Aften a year of running this as part of my wedding photography packages as Benjamin Mathers Photography we decided to separate the businesses, and go it alone, we employed our good friend Manu to take it out for us whilst I was out shooting weddings. It was more popular than I had hoped, it’s always a shame to turn down work so we decided to build some more, I had lots of ideas for new photo booths and had a much better idea of how to make things easier and generally work better.
So in the autumn of 2017 we rented a workshop for 6 months or so, bought some machines and put our carpentry skills into action. The new booths were to be of a slightly different ilk.
The idea was to make the photo booth units more stand alone, everything in one box, with screens rather than push buttons, and utilising more advance software. The new booths are much easier to set up, they have less foibles but still look just as cool – or perhaps cooler.
In terms of gear we use Canon DSLR cameras, Elinchrom studio flashes, DNP and Mitsubishi dye sublimation printers, HP Elitedesk i5 computers, and a various touch screen monitors. One thing that has always been very important to us is producing professional quality photographs, the equipment we use and training we give to staff ensures this.
When we started out we were based in south Norfolk and we still cover a lot of weddings and events throughout Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Essex, but as word of mouth has spread we’ve found ourselves working further afield we’re often in London and work events throughout the midlands. Back in 2018 we moved across the country to beautiful west Wales. So now we find ourselves covering events in Pembrokeshire, Ceredigion, Carmarthenshire, Swansea, Cardiff, Newport as well as Bristol, Somerset and the West Country.
Obviously 2020 has taken us all by surprise and has been much of a fallow year, although our 3 kids have managed to keep us busy – as has our work on the 80 acre community farm we live on! However, with bookings well under way for 2021 we’re excited to hit the ground running. At all future events we will be offering hand sanitiser and sanitising wipes to ensure we can keep any risk of infection at bay. Although we’ve largely enjoyed the inforced break we’re eager to get back to work and totally understand just how difficult it has been for so many of our clients who have invested so much into the organisation of their events. Fortunately we’ve been able to accomodate everyone with their new requirements.