When we first came across the #vanlife project on instagram we were immediately enamored. Foster Huntington's instagram following grew quickly and we swiftly hopped on the bandwagon. Since its inception two years ago, Foster has put 80 thousand miles on his van. His travels have taken him all around North America where has been able to meet some amazing people and visually chronicle the #vanlife along the way. Having just completed his kickstarter campaign, his book, Home Is Where You Park It will be available early in 2014. We are pumped to get inside the head of Foster and talk vans, life advice, traveling essentials and more.
We Are The Market: What do you miss most about living in one place
Foster Huntington: I miss having local spots where I eat and a group of friends i see regularly. Life is a lot more up in the air now. I sometimes go months between seeing a group of friends.
What is so interesting to you about Vans? And why do a book about them?
I love how they allow people to travel and explore on their own terms. There's no reservations at hotels or stress about finding places to eat. It's all self contained. Its freedom. I also like how it isn't wildly expensive. Unlike so much shit out there today, travel in a van or camper is attainable to people form all different walks of life. I wanted to capture and share this in a book with the hopes of inspiring people to go out and try it for themselves.
Give us a quick anecdote about the most interested camper you've ever met.
Thats really hard to boil down, but a year and a half ago, I met a couple in their 60s from Alberta that retired early, sold their house and have been traveling around the world in their 72 VW Westfalia. They take their time and have such a contagious appreciation for life. They seemed like a 16 year old love birds that ditched out on highschool and hit the road. I want to be like that when I'm there age.
How long have you been traveling? Are you going to stay on the road indefinitely?
I've been traveling full time since August of 2011. Most of the time I've been driving around North America and despite having put 80k miles on my camper, theres still so much stuff that I want to see and do. I dont like to think in terms of absolutes, but I think I'm going to be living like this for awhile.
What's next for you?
I'm going to lay low and work on the Home Is Where You Park It book for a few months. Since January, I haven't been in one place for more than a week. It gets a little exhausting. I'm going to head up to the PNW and enjoy the season change for awhile too.
What prompted you to do a kickstarter? How has the feedback been from your kickstarter supporters?
I decided to a do a kickstarter for this project because i wanted to have total creative control over how the book looks and feels. My primary goal wasn't to sell twenty thousands of these things but make something that I'm proud of and captures the aesthetic i want. The response has been great. I'm trying to raise 45K and I am getting really close.
What are your traveling essentials?
My travel essentials are pretty simple. I love surfing. Its what keeps me sane so whenever I'm near the ocean, i'll travel with a wetsuit and a board, most likely a twinfin of sorts. Other than that I have a goruck backpack that i've had for three years that i take everywhere with me. Last but not least, I always have an iPhone with me. Its the camera i use most and it keeps me connected to the world.
The best advice you've ever received?
A friend and mentor told me to always take the most fun/responsible option. I try to stay pretty true to that.