Cast Study: Jess & Matt – Arnos Vale Wedding Photographers

Jess & Matt chose a cemetery for their wedding day. Unusual, yes, but nothing was ‘normal’, ‘traditional’ or ‘conventional’ about their wedding day at Arnos Vale. The same could be said about their Arnos Vale wedding photographers.

Jess had grown up playing in the then abandoned and overgrown Arnos Vale Cemetery in Bristol. The Cemetery was opened in 1837 and all the buildings were designed by Charles Underwood. During the 20th century the cemetery fell into disrepair, and local groups began campaigning for its restoration. In 2003 it was featured on the BBC programme Restoration. The cemetery was a South West region runner-up and has since received a £4.8 million Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

“We wanted photos that were vibrant, non traditional and that captured the beauty of the location.” – Jess & Matt

Following the ceremony at the chapel Jess & Matt were greeted by the Ambling Band who serenaded them through the canapes and group photos the led the wedding party down Bath Road into Bristol. The celebrations took place at The Thunderbolt and went on late. Very late.

“We needed a non traditional approach, flexibility, someone creative and calm enough to successfully photograph two of the most photo-fussy people we’ve ever met (us!)!”

Arnos Vale Wedding Photographer“We had been lucky enough to see Owen’s photographs and always felt blown away by his seemingly effortless ability to capture action, emotion and ambiance in all of his shots. It was so obvious that his skills were ideally suited to this type of photography, and that the individuality of each situation was enhanced by Owen’s creative style.”
Arnos Vale Wedding PhotographerWe were very nervous about the photography for our wedding, more nervous than we were about getting married. Owen made us feel much more relaxed about it from the very start; from the contact before we met, to the pre wedding discussions and meetings. We felt our individuality was totally respected and that Owen understood our creative direction for the wedding, as well as being able to build upon it with us.”
Arnos Vale Wedding PhotographerMy favourite is of the moment after one of our ceremony readers Kelly, dropped the ‘f-bomb’ as part of her speech! It was splendid, took everyone by surprise and that photo really captures the reactions of us and that moment in time” – Matt
Arnos Vale Wedding PhotographerEvery couple is stressed during the planning for their big day, and we were no exception. The best part of all of our planning was the pre wedding practice photo shoot in the venue. Owen used lots of techniques and games to help us to relax in front of the camera, based on reminding us why we were getting married in the first place; this worked perfectly, to the point of us feeling like we were the only people there (oblivious to him hiding in the bushes taking photos!). We assumed that connecting emotionally as a couple whilst at the end of an intrusive photographers lens would be impossible – Owen completely mastered the art of making his subjects feel comfortable and it resulted in us having some beautiful, memorable and relaxed moments together, which shone through in the photos.”
Arnos Vale Wedding PhotographerThe unique style of Owen’s photography was the aspect that struck us the most – candid and unobtrusive photos that told a story without even knowing the people in them. Using saturated colour and creative composition Owen’s pictures capture excitement and individuality, which were the key elements that we wanted to be represented in the photography for our day. “
Arnos Vale Wedding PhotographerUnless we were in posed group shots it was very hard to notice Owen was even there, which resulted in some beautiful and candid images of the day. This was especially important throughout the ceremony as we were able to forget they were there and their presence didn’t impact upon the intimacy of the moment.”
Arnos Vale Wedding Photographer“My Favourite photo of the day is of Matt and I in the doorway after the ceremony. The composition is just perfect and it captures us for the first time enjoying a moment as a married couple which helps take me back to that very second of the day.” – Jess
Arnos Vale Wedding PhotographerBoth photographers worked extremely hard to incorporate everything we wanted in our day, which meant fitting in a lot, dodging traffic and dashing between venues. Owen achieved this in a very calm and professional manner. They were very adaptable to change, weather and time, going with the flow and not appearing stressed if plans weren’t going as expected.”
Arnos Vale Wedding Photographer“Owen was ever so friendly, approachable and up for a laugh, which really helped us and our guests to relax in their presence. Laughing at ‘Mark in the bushes’ was a welcome distraction from the aching feet after so many group shots!”
Arnos Vale Wedding Photographer

“Receiving the ‘mini video’ of the photobooth pictures was brilliant and idea was inspired. It was posted straight onto our Facebook pages which resulted in a flurry of excited and positive responses from all who had been there and from many who hadn’t. We felt it was an innovative concept which captured movement but didn’t have the cheesy quality of a traditional wedding video.”

Arnos Vale Wedding Photographer“The photos came back to us in good time, and the wait was nicely punctuated with one or two beautiful teaser shots to ease our impatience!
We have been extremely impressed with the easy, accessibility and professional look of the photos in the online album. Having this has meant we could send the link to our guests very quickly, who can then view them at their leisure as many times as they like, as well as order a few for the grandparents!”Arnos Vale Wedding Photographer“Our guests have been really complimentary of the wedding photos, with many of them commenting on how the vibrancy and individuality was so perfectly captured. Those who had spoken to Owen and Mark said how friendly they were and those who hadn’t commented on their professional capabilities and warm personalities.”
Arnos Vale Wedding Photographer“We were over the moon and absolutely blown away by the pictures when they arrived and thoroughly enjoyed re-living the day with a nice cup of tea. We have sent on the link to all of our wedding vendors, many of whom have been so impressed and requested to use the pictures as part of their advertising material. “

Arnos Vale Wedding Photographer

“Finally, receiving batch of wedding cards from Owen as a gift afterwards was a truly lovely gesture which we were very touched by. The finish and the print on them was of a very high quality and lent itself to the elegance of the photos. The cards went out as fast as we could write them and everyone commented on how beautiful they were.

You get one shot at wedding photos and with that in mind we would recommend you use Owen Mathias to capture your wedding day – we are confident you will not be disappointed with your choice. They worked beautifully together as a team to make us and our guests feel relaxed and at ease in front of the camera. We have been given images of the day we want to share with everyone today, and feel confident that we will still enjoy looking at them in many years to come. The hard work Owen put in before and after the event made us feel respected and valued, as individuals and as customers, and we feel certain that we would not have found such good quality, personal service in anyone else.” – Matt & Jess

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