Viewing entries tagged
Vanlife

Eva & Victor: Foreign Natives

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Eva & Victor: Foreign Natives

"We are Eva and Victor and we are, originally, from Barcelona. But after living in San Francisco for a year and a half, we decided to move to our custom converted Dodge Ram Van to explore America while keeping our part-time jobs. Traveling and living in a van is something that had always been on our minds, but it's difficult to find the right moment to switch. Now that we are on the road, we absolutely think this is the best decision we have ever made.

During the last six months, we have been traveling around USA and Canada. We are currently in Berlin for two months to work on a project, but we are going back to San Francisco soon to pick up the van again, and we will drive down through Baja California in Mexico, to as far South as we can get.

You can follow our stories at http://www.foreignnatives.co/

Victor runs as a competitive mountain and ultra runner. He also surfs whenever we are close to the ocean. Eva paints vans and illustrates a travel journal. Recently, she took a collection of painted vans from our travels and put them into a calendar that we are promoting through a Kickstarter.

Vanlife Illustrated is a project that comes from our road trip. During the last year, we have been taking photos of all the vans that we found on the road. We realized there’s a lot of different types of cars where people live in, from the most classic to the most weird: vans, cars, trucks, RVs, trailers, buses, etc.

So Eva started painting with gouache a set of vans that could express the variety of what we find on our way. The final product is a 2016 calendar, with one illustration for each month. Everything is handmade, even the typography!

She just started a Kickstarter campaign, where you can contribute and get your own beautiful vanlife calendar. You can also get a set of 12 postcards, or buy one of the original paintings. If you are also really proud of your van, Eva can also paint it!

Support us on our Kickstarter: http://kck.st/1HRH8XK"

Links:

Kickstarter: 
http://kck.st/1HRH8XK

Instagram: 
https://www.instagram.com/vanlifeillustrated/

Blog:
http://www.foreignnatives.co/

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Matt & Josh: The Van With No Plan

How it all started

Were brothers! -same mom same dad, always have been :)
We were raised by a single mother all our life and we love her to death. Josh was born in Carmichael California and I was born in Amarillo Texas. 
After living in California for 3 years we moved to Colorado for 4.i I don't remember much of this other than snippets of our home in Colorado. After leaving Colorado we moved to Butte Montana to be closer to our grandparents and thats where we called home for 10 cold years. so when people ask we just say we're from Montana, its easier that way. 

Neither me or Josh finished school in the traditional way. Josh went to job corps at a young age and got a degree in facilities maintenance. and for me, when i was 15 i got sent to a National Guard boot-camp and obtained by GED there and was out of school by 16. When i was 17 i moved to California with Josh and we worked a bunch of different sales jobs including door to door and mall kiosk jobs. we are very sociable. We then worked for 3 different windshield repair companies before finding an investor and starting our own at a young age. We then ran it for a good year and even bought a van to start transporting our employees. which is where our first van came from right there. We slept comfortably in it one night and sat around a campfire with ideas of repairing windshields on the road at Wal Marts and stuff to keep traveling. 22 weeks later our apartment was cleaned out and our stuff sold. i didnt think we would be gone 3 months let alone 3 years now. Having not done a windshield repair in about a year other than for van travelers we meet, we can happily say that we have supported ourselves off of odd=jobs and we enjoy them more.

The Plan? what plan?
the experiences, irreplaceable. 
the people, life changing. 
and the stories, endless.

Where are they at now?

Were currently around Sacramento working for a guy named Byron that we met at a music festival in Placerville Ca. doing things like helping him move and paint his new place. we told him if he can keep us busy for a week we would stay because we were itching to and set on heading to the Oregon coast. We are kind of in the midst of doing a big thing that were excited to announce soon but cant really give the details so, keep an eye out for that :)
Other than current situations we were just on the east coast about 3 weeks ago. we found plenty of work in Conneticut that kept us busy and even crossed something off the bucket list and saw a live taping of the Jerry Springer show. Other than that we just skated a lot of different skate parks, fished a lot of different places and just soaked in the vibes that the East Coast had to offer, but the west coast is the best coast and we couldn't wait to get back. the only reason we were near New York is because we did a long boarding trip, which a lot know about, but we had 4 people join us in the US as we skateboarded 50 miles a day for 3 months from Los Angeles to New York. we raised 6 thousand dollars for the Teenage Cancer Trust on the duration of the trip, and even filmed it to be released as a documentary early next year. you can read more about that trip and see more pics which you're welcome to use on my blog www.myroamingstory.blogspot.com

Follow on Instagram
matt monthei @myroamingstory, josh monthei @ditchtheplans
@TVWNP

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Katie Sadie: The Trip About Nothing

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Hey there, 

I am a working photographer living in Toronto, Ontario. For the past 6 years I have primarily photographed fashion and portraiture- this is all about to change. I have successfully moved out of my studio to hit the road. My adventure will last 6 months living in a van to develop a massive street and documentary photo essay.  Right now I am working 3 jobs and couch surfing to save up as much as possible before the November departure date. I have also launched an Indiegogo - The Trip About Nothing to help fund the van, some gas and of course film. 

I biked around the city with Plastik Films for the video portion of my Indiegogo to see what kind of vans Toronto adventure seekers were representing. Right now I am still on the hunt for the adventure mobile of my dreams. It is not a simple task but I know that my van is out there somewhere!

Follow my journey through

Website: katiesadie.com

Instagram: @tripaboutnothing #tripaboutnothing. 

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Diana: Dreambounder

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Diana: Dreambounder

Mornings start early. We awake with the sun and sleepily drink our coffee; the furnace warming up the van after a cold night. We get dressed wearing multiple layers, rain gear and waterproof hiking shoes as the environment is unforgiving and the weather is fast changing. The van door opens and out we all come: Mike (my boyfriend of 8 years), Strider and Gemma (our two dogs), Phoenix (our cat), and me, Diana.

We have been living in our 1986 Ford Econoline Van for over six months now. Before that we spent a year and a half in a 32 foot long RV.  A few years ago, we did cross country trips in our minivan and tent. Travel has become a way of life for us; it always offers unexpected surprises, magnificent views and a fair amount of challenges as well.

Our biggest challenge by far has been funding our lifestyle; making money. We’ve done all sorts of jobs, we’ve worked on farms, in hotels and resorts, factories and warehouses and have picked up lots of temporary gigs on Craigslist as well. However, they all left us feeling incomplete at the end of the day. Trading our precious time to work for a cause we often didn’t believe in was taking a toll on us. We knew there had to be another way.

That brings me to now. As I type this, I’m sitting in front of a campfire in the mountains on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. We arrived here a couple weeks ago having no idea what to expect after answering an ad on Craigslist looking for wild plant and berry harvesters. I’m happy to say we are loving this new lifestyle, and although we are definitely not going to get rich from it, it’s how we’ve always dreamed of living.

So, back to the beginning of the story. We all pile out of the van, energy renewed from a good nights sleep. Strider and Gemma lead the way as we hike down the SunCoaster Trail searching for Salal, a green leafed plant commonly used in the floral industry. It’s not hard to find as it usually covers the forest floor, but our buyer has high standards, only wanting the straightest stems and zero damage on the leaves.

Mike treks pretty far into the forest, Gemma staying by his side while I wait on the trail sorting and bundling what he brings back to me. Strider stands guard. Phoenix is close by perched on a rock observing-we all have our roles to play. At the end of a long day of hiking and harvesting we walk back to our campsite, carrying all of the bundles we made.

If it was a sunny day, we come back to a fully charged battery; our 200 watt solar panels providing us with more than enough energy. Mike starts building a fire as I start making dinner, something healthy and vegan. The animals are all exhausted and after eating they lay down by the fire and are soon fast asleep.

This new way of life is exactly what we needed. But like everything else in our life, we know this is only temporary. In 6-8 weeks we will drive over 2000 kilometres north to the North West Territories and will be picking Morel Mushrooms. We will be living much like we are now, only making a lot more money. We feel so grateful to have found a way of living that doesn’t involve working for other people and living by someone else’s schedule.

For us, freedom and fulfilment come from living in our tiny home on wheels and always being ready to move on to the next adventure. You can follow our journey at www.facebook.com/dreambounder and on Instagram @dreambounder

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Alison Turner: Van Life & Photography

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Have you ever thought of living out of a van? We have! Alison is the real deal when it comes to van life! We are constantly inspired and amazed at the adventures her and her puppy Max get up to in America. Read on to find out how Alison changed her life to follow her passions and check out some of her beautiful pictures.  You can check out Alison's adventures on Facebook, Instagram, blog and her website just click the hyperlinks. 

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ROAR: Tell us a bit about your background and upbringing that has allowed you to make choices to live a creative and passionate lifestyle?  

Alison: I was born and raised in Southern California and my family had a station wagon that we took everywhere to camp and explore.  I suppose camping resonated with me at a young age and I’ve loved it ever since.  My mother is an artist and when I was younger, I hated being dragged along to her shows and going to her classes. I wasn’t into art much then, but I can’t imagine my life without it now.  I was raised with a father and grandfather that had very strong work ethics so when I went to school and years later, I worked hard in corporate advertising until it became too unhealthy for me.  My father died at a young age of 55 so I wanted to be able to explore and do things now.  You never know when your time might be up.  

ROAR: What inspired you to live a life in a van with your favourite friend Max? Tell us a couple of highlights of the van lifestyle.

Alison: Before there was “Campy”, my van, there was “Trailie” my teardrop trailer and I spent two years traveling with a tent.  After the two years in the tent, I had my eye on a campervan and researched it for many months until I found the perfect one.  I jumped on it and haven’t regretted it at all. The van is so much more luxurious then living out of a tent.  I loved the trailer but the way I travel, I like to change my direction at a moments notice so the van works well for that type of travel.  I feel safer too.  One of the highlights on the first few camping trips was a refrigerator!  I didn’t have to mess with an ice chest anymore!  It sounds simple but man, it was such a delight to have a cold drink ready whenever I wanted one.  Unfortunately, it’s had problems since then and stopped working.  But I will cherish those days when it worked like a charm.  I don’t plan as I go along so every day is a surprise.  I have found some nice campsites just by chance and some of my favorite moments are waking up and looking out the window to the forest, listening to waves or the creek. Those first moments in the morning are the best.  Then it gets even better after coffee is made.

ROAR: What inspired you to live a life in a van with your favourite friend Max? Tell us a couple of highlights of the van lifestyle.

Alison: Before there was “Campy”, my van, there was “Trailie” my teardrop trailer and I spent two years traveling with a tent.  After the two years in the tent, I had my eye on a campervan and researched it for many months until I found the perfect one.  I jumped on it and haven’t regretted it at all. The van is so much more luxurious then living out of a tent.  I loved the trailer but the way I travel, I like to change my direction at a moments notice so the van works well for that type of travel.  I feel safer too.  One of the highlights on the first few camping trips was a refrigerator!  I didn’t have to mess with an ice chest anymore!  It sounds simple but man, it was such a delight to have a cold drink ready whenever I wanted one.  Unfortunately, it’s had problems since then and stopped working.  But I will cherish those days when it worked like a charm.  I don’t plan as I go along so every day is a surprise.  I have found some nice campsites just by chance and some of my favorite moments are waking up and looking out the window to the forest, listening to waves or the creek. Those first moments in the morning are the best.  Then it gets even better after coffee is made.

ROAR: How do you survive financially living in a van and exploring many destinations?

AIison: saved my money when I worked in Advertising, made some good investments (buying a home), and I rent my home out when I travel.  I have freelance jobs here and there but I am not getting rich by any means.  I travel smart and stay with friends, walmart, or free land camping.  Also, I make all of my meals in campy and don’t buy a lot of “stuff.” The most expensive travel expense is gas.

ROAR: What are some exciting achievements since undertaking this project and starting your website?

Alison: Oh man… not sure I can list them all.  I am so fortunate that people are recognizing my images and giving me opportunities to shoot, be in a show, or license what I already have. It has really been a blessing.

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Craig & Kelly: Teeny Tiny Living Space... Huge Back Yard

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We were surfing at Gravs, Norah Head, NSW, Australia when we spotted a cool looking adventure mobile. We love talking to people about their lifestyle, so I approached the family to find out more. Craig and Kelly along with their three beautiful children, Indi, Keanu and Tao have moved into their van full time and were in the preparation stage, getting ready to start their road trip and explore Australia. It was so nice to hang out with these guys and talk about van living and the amazing opportunities that come along with this alternate lifestyle. Craig worked as a truck driver but wanted to spend more time with his family and see more of our beautiful country. So they made the decision to live the van life full time. I told the children how lucky they were to have such great parents and Indi replied "I know they take us everywhere" such a cutie. We gave them some rebel on a rainbow stickers for the road and hope to catch up with Craig and the crew soon and have a camp fire or a surf. You can follow their adventures on the blog link provided below.  What inspirational people to be giving their children such an adventurous upbringing.

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Sarah & Stefaan: Miles & Miles

Lake Hawea, New Zealand.

Lake Hawea, New Zealand.

You know that feeling you get when you just want to take a year off and travel the world (umm yes, every day!)  Well Sarah and Stefaan are a beautiful couple who did just that. They turned their dreams into reality, worked hard, saved and left on the journey of a lifetime. We have been following their adventures on Instagram and their website Miles & Miles and couldn't help but be inspired (and a little jealous hehe) of their wanderlust life style. They truly are an example of 'The Passionate Living Network'.

What lead you to take the leap and start your own adventure?

We always knew we wanted to do a trip like this. After working full-time as Designers in NYC for almost 6 years, we started talking seriously about an adventure around the world for an entire year. As much as we both love to travel, neither of us had seen much of the world. Feeling burnt out from long hours at work and ready for a change, we decided it was the right time in our lives to take the leap. We worked hard to save the money for our adventure by renting out our apartment and taking on freelance on top of our full-time jobs. It was exhausting at times, but once the idea was there, there was no turning back.

How long have you been traveling for? 

We began our adventure on March 19, 2012. It’ll be 1 year in about a week and we’re excited to report that we’re able to extend the journey for an extra month!

How have your travels changed your outlook on life? 

Making the decision to leave our family and friends, and our secure jobs was a difficult one. We knew we were ready for a big change and this was, in our opinion, the best way to close the door on one thing and open it on another. We’ve learned an overwhelming amount about ourselves this past year. Not only have we been exposed to many different cultures and landscapes, but we have also learned so much about problem solving and working through things together. Traveling isn’t always easy and it’s been important for us to step out of our comfort zone and challenge ourselves to make everyday an adventure. We haven’t had much time to digest everything since we’ve been so focused on what to do next, where to go, where to sleep tonight, etc. This trip will continue to change our lives for a long long time.

What do you do for finical support? 

Our plan was to save enough money so that we could go the year without working. It’s meant that we can’t afford to do some of the things that you would on a vacation, but so far so good!

Can you pick a favourite destination? 

We’ve loved so many places that we’ve seen on this trip, but would have to make Iceland #1. It’s raw, natural beauty, friendly and inspiring culture combined with some of the most epic geography we’ve ever seen makes it stand out the most. We can’t wait to go back!

What does the future hold?

After being on the road for an entire year, we’re still inspired by other people and their adventures. We realized how many people are encouraged by seeing the world through our photos and in the future we’d love to make adventuring more accessible to others. Looking back on our entire trip, our favorite parts were exploring new places while living out of our vehicle (van, car, motorcycle). We’re hoping all these things combined with our passion to work for ourselves will lead to something exciting in the future. Big plans ahead, so stay tuned!

Cappadocia, Turkey.

Cappadocia, Turkey.

Iceland.

Iceland.

Nong Khiaw, Laos.

Nong Khiaw, Laos.

Chamonix, France.

Chamonix, France.

Montepertuso, Italy.

Montepertuso, Italy.

Luang Prabang, Laos.

Luang Prabang, Laos.

Istria, Croatia.

Istria, Croatia.

hank you so much Sarah and Stefaan for sharing your passionate life with us. It is inspiring to see a couple living their dreams together. So happy that you could extend your trip for another month, cant wait to see more pics! 

Can't get enough of these two, check out all the places they have been and their future adventures on their website Miles & Miles, link below.

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James & Rachel: Idle Theory Bus

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We have loved following Idle Theory Bus and their adventures across America. We are so excited to share their passionate story with you and hope you are inspired to live your own dreams.

Who is Idle Theory Bus?

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What led you to take the leap and live the VanLife?

We acquired Sunshine in North Carolina and drove her out to California a few years back. Volkswagon love strikes suddenly, permanently, and without warning. Our bus has changed our lives. After graduating university, we lived in the van for eight months, poor as hell, doing work on small organic farms in exchange for a place to crash and food.

We’ve lived in apartments for stints since then, but whenever we’re confined to one place, we get itchy. About a month later we’re planning a move back into the bus. It’s our home.

What do you do for financial support?

The balance of work and leisure fascinates us. The Idle Theory of our lifestyle is to have the means to achieve freedom from obligation. Living creatively requires a huge surplus of time, which money can buy.  So, as we all know but hate to admit, money is crucial. You don’t really need that much of it to do what we do, though.

Rachel has a fair amount of wine knowledge and has always found work as a server. Luckily, the restaurant industry is for vagabonds. Coming and going is part of the trade.

James has been fortunate to make films for a living, though the balance of work and leisure becomes incredibly (wonderfully) complicated when you make art for money. For the past year, he’s had a blast as the content creator for DIY surf channel Korduroy.tv.

What inspires you?

Those who have found a way to live off the grid. The poetry of Robinson Jeffers.  Awesome VW mechanics. Peaches fresh off the tree. The wise innocence of Richard Brautigan. Finding cold water in the desert. The detail of a hummingbird’s nest. Carrot cake.

But really, we are most inspired by the moving miracles we find in the wild. We spend a lot of our idle time on back roads, in forests of Douglas fir or in the painted hills of the American West’s varied deserts. The diversity of our planet is overwhelming, and we feel honored to have experienced some of it.

What does the future hold for Rachel, James and Sunshine?

2013 is an exciting year for us. We are on a trip north through California, and the plan is to make it to the Canadian border by year’s end. That is, if Sunshine allows us that distance. There will be a lot of backpacking, some farm work, and probably a few inevitable breakdowns. We are stoked to be on the road!

Rachel is developing a graphic novel based on the comic strips we have on our site. Ataraxia might be complete by the year’s end. 

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We are also releasing a web series that documents our travels and the people we meet, called Bus Stops. The first episode will be available in late March/early April. Keep an eye out on www.idletheorybus.com

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Cant get enough of James, Rachel and Sunshine, click on the links below and get lost in their adventures.

 James' film work has also been featured online on Korduroy TV http://beta.korduroy.tv/ 

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Thank you so much for sharing your story guys, feeling very inspired! Have fun driving to Canada, good luck with your Ataraxia graphic novel and can't wait to watch your Bus Stop web series.  

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