A talented competitive track runner, academic, and budding sports photographer best describes Michael Dawson. Oh and his dry sense of humour that fits so well with the crew at GPR! Like so many connections these days I first met Michael on Instagram after spotting his images of track runners. After helping on a few GPR shoots, Michael has now joined the collective in that capacity.
I’m stoked to have his talent and passion onboard with a pulse on running culture and heavily towards ‘all things track’. I caught up with Michael recently, and fired him a few questions about his passions, thoughts and why he is involved with the GPR project.
Where are you based?
AKL – NZL
What do you do to pay the bills?
A mix of part time work, coaching some younger middle distance athletes and my photographic activities.
Why do you run? Is it for fitness, competition or something else?
I started running because I loved the competition. I loved going faster than the people I lined up against. However in recent years I have defined my success less by who I beat, but by my own personal goals. Competing with myself to go faster, hit my goal times and just to push myself to my limits are the reasons I run.
What part of running culture do you enjoy the most?
I love the people. All of my best friends are people who I have met through running. Everyone wants you to go well, to get faster and to run further. The positivity from everyone is what keeps me going back to meets and racing, there are no shortage of genuine congratulations from everyone when someone performs their best or they have a good race
Why are you involved with the Good People Run project?
My love of running combined with the rad photos and art that the project produces is the one two punch that really got me hooked on GPR. Combined with the awesome people apart of GPR and the dedication to giving back to nonprofits and charities, Good People Run seemed like the perfect fit for me.
How many years have you been into photography?
I’ve been taking photos for quite a while now but only in the last three or four years I have been taking it a bit more seriously and putting effort into improving myself. Recently I founded Temposhot that captures mostly track centric event sports photography.
If you were to choose one place to run forever- where would it be?
Running in Auckland is fantastic, with two rad parks, an expansive waterfront and the choice of seven tracks to train at. I can’t think of anywhere better for me to run.
If you were to choose a spirit animal (bear with me on this) that best reflects you, what would it be and why?
Probably a cheetah. Mainly because I’m pretty laid back and lazy most of the time but when it’s go time, I go and go fast!
What can you not leave the house without when heading for a run?
Recently it has been my sunglasses. After running the Auckland Half last year in them, it’s made a world of difference. Just being able to keep my face relaxed while I run.
You are asked to give a TED talk. What would your talk be about?
“How to procrastinate efficiently”, procrastinating study and work is how I learnt most of my photography knowledge after all!