Trade 29 | Dave Cornthwaite

"Shall we see if we can get one of these men in suits to say 'yes'?" Dave queried with a grin on his face, scanning Canary Wharf for someone to take a group photo. It was my first time meeting him at YesTribe drinks four months prior to trade 29 and before I had even started this project... but that sounded like a life attitude in a nutshell. Dave had left his job 11 years prior, beginning his expedition 1000 project to complete 25 journeys of at least 1000 miles, each by a different form of non-motorised transport. Catch up to now and I was staying on his houseboat a few days before he set off for the 12th journey: Japan via Scooter.

I think if I died tomorrow I would be very content with the way I’ve lived my life
— Dave Cornthwaite (Yestival '16)

The trade was photographing his adventure prep as the last few bits of equipment were still being delivered and he was finding out that everything did actually fit on the scooter as planned. These expeditions were now his holidays. Space to himself. A chance to set the out of office to 'email me again in January'. A 1000 miles through Japan by scooter is now how the man unwinds from it all and he was assembling the final bits of his set up into place like a giddy school boy.

The boat was a new home for Dave so it was entertaining watching him explaining to his neighbour for the first time how he made a living. A conversation brought on by said neighbour's curiosity towards what a grown man was doing playing around with a scooter on the pontoons.

In pursuing these adventures Dave gained an online following. From this he cultivated a community - the YesTribe - by posting one simple statement every week: "I'm going camping outside London. Anyone who wants to join meet me under the Liverpool Street Station Clock at Xpm". It was those little campouts that gradually evolved into Yestival (trade 26).

"I think if I died tomorrow I would be very content with the way I've lived my life" Dave stated to a video update during Yestival. That alone says more about what he has accomplished so far than I could hope to convey in writing anymore.

Currently mid way through his Japan scoot, you can learn more about this particular expedition and follow it's progress here: http://www.davecorn.com/scootjapan


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British photographer moving across countries through a back-to-back series of creative trades exchanging my photography for all my needs in a mission to reach every continent without money.