In the wee hours of every morning, at 03:30, Mike Guest wakes up, has a cup of tea, puts on his wetsuit, then grabs his camera and leaves his flat in the dark to wade out into the sea to wait for the dawn.
Dawn Days is a project to capture the start of each day from the water, whatever the conditions. Every morning this month, Mike is out at the blue hour with no definite plan, no client brief, no surfer to capture – just him and his camera, observing nature start its day.
‘It started from a phone call with my photographer friend Nick Pumphrey, who is down in Cornwall and said he would be going out to do this, and I decided to do the same’ Mike tells me, ‘But it wasn’t until after I’d already committed that I realised in Scotland I would have to be waking up a whole hour earlier than Nick!’
But what started as a simple morning activity for a photographer to connect with his craft and nearby nature quickly turned into so much more. Mike has been uploading his footage, edited each day into unique clips and stories, to his Instagram channel to share how he observed the dawn with his audience.
‘There’s something about simply bobbing around in the water… People can connect to the way that I’m filming.’ Mike says that his short clips are to provide a moment of escapism to his viewers. ‘I don’t really care about comments or likes, it’s not about those numbers. It’s when someone says “I really look forward to these each day” – that’s what gets me. That’s what this is about’.