London At Dawn – win a photography tour!
There aren’t many things that would get London Living up at 4am on a freezing rainy Thursday in April, but a recent invite to experience a London at Dawn photography taster trip (scroll to the end to see how you could win a workshop!) did just that.
Starting an hour before sunrise, our trip began on Millbank Pier just in front of the Tower of London, in the drizzling morning rain. Despite the early hour, our grumpy morning faces and less than ideal conditions, we were greeted warmly by talented photographer Anthony Epes, who specialises in early morning photography, having even released a book on it, and friendly Brixton-born cabbie of 25 years Nick Mortimore, whose enthusiasm for the city, its history and its people was contagious.
We began by shooting London Bridge and the looming peak of The Shard on tripods kindly lent out by the boys, as the sky lightened to a cool lilac. Despite the lack of sunrise, it was a breathtaking sight to see. Nick was extremely helpful to beginners, helping us to set up the camera in the right way, carrying the tripods for weaklings with cold hands (us) and giving tips on framing.
All the while, cabbie Nick kept us entertained with anecdotes from London history as we wandered, now tripod-less up through the awakening city streets, stopping for shots we’d likely never have noticed, with a very welcome stop for coffee as the first shop opened at 7am. Defrosted and rejuvenated, we emerged blinking into a now-bustling Bishopsgate, down the backstreets of the East End, past all manner of characters including a smartly dressed Gilbert of Gilbert and George emerging from his home, a man walking three cute black Scottie dogs and builders enjoying an early morning breakfast of cigarettes and Red Bull.
We rounded the morning off with bagels at the legendary Brick Lane Beigel Bake, before heading off to work (us) and presumably back to bed for them.
It was an unusual, fascinating and friendly tour we’d recommend to anyone interested in dabbling in city photography, learning more about London or simply anyone with a new camera who wants to give it a good workout. We left with some lovely pictures, a sense of pride and an excellent excuse to leave work early.
We’re very pleased to announce we have a ticket for a future two-day workshop with London at Dawn to give away so you can experience this inspiring day for yourself – the perfect treat for any budding photographer or curious historian!
All we need you to do is tweet us in your favourite picture of London with the hashtag #londonlivingphoto. Our favourite picture will win the prize – it’s as simple as that! Good luck and happy snapping – our winner will be chosen on Tuesday 15th May.