As a follow up to his debut book “The Burning House” published by Harper Collins, Foster Huntington continues his fascination with American consumerism through his project “Home is Where You Park It.” Choosing Kickstarter’s DIY funding platform, his offering features one hard cover photo book, one pocket tee shirt and an assortment of bumper stickers.
A Coffee Table Book (about people who don’t have coffee tables)
By Cyrus Sutton
I first met Foster Huntington about a year and a half ago on California’s central coast. Raised in a small town in Oregon, he attended the respected Colby College in Maine before working at Ralph Lauren’s NYC offices in his early 20s. A Thoreauvian epiphany led him to leave his career and traverse much of the Western United States in his 80s VW van.
Taking photos while indulging in the good life, Foster’s rare and enviable lifestyle has not come by chance. Behind the serene landscapes on his WordPress, Tumblr, and Instagram feeds, is a young man combining ambition with a refined aesthetic palette and an innate sense of rural authenticity. With these skills, he has worked his ass off to build a positive worldwide community of stoked folks.
When we first met, he admitted to being concerned about making ends meet. Having nearly run through his Harper Collins book deal dough, he was looking to sustain his lifestyle which consisted of mostly food and auto expenses. Through social media consulting for companies like Patagonia and Allianz, to name a few, he has carved out a healthy niche for himself. But after watching his vanlife movement explode this past year, with multiple companies and artists emulating his offerings, he decided to create something tangible around the growing subculture that he has helped to spread.
Last Fall he and I took a weekend drive to the Grand Canyon after a surf trip to Russia. I’d grown anxious with my life in San Diego and it was Foster’s stoke on that trip that inspired me to move back into my van after a couple years of renting an apartment.
Much of surfing has become a competitive and commercialized shell of its former self, leaving a lot of surfers strained and unfriendly. But when I travel to the desert in my van and see some old-timers parked in the shade of the local library, poaching WiFi, there is an immediate connection. We give tours of our rigs and trade tips on places to hike and explore. Around San Diego it is rare to see surfers laughing and sporting shit-eating grins at the sight of other surfers. I often wonder what it was like to surf in Southern California in the 50s, the era that is referred to as the “golden age.” It probably was something like Van Life is today.
Check out Foster’s Kickstarter.