What Van Life, a surf documentary, can teach brands about connecting with their customers on a personal level.

In July 2011, Foster Huntington left his job as a creative director for some of the top retail brands in New York City, bought a VW Vanagon and hit the road.

For the last two years, he’s put 80 thousand miles on his camper traveling around North America surfing and camping. What emerged from was not only a photo documentary on Surf culture, but a narrative on how people live in their vehicles and exist as auto nomads in a series called Van Life.

Van Life is a cross platform, episodic journey over two years of life on the road. In that time, Hunting has developed an Instagram following of 625,000 people and his tumblr, Out of Reception, averages over 350 reblogs per post, his most emotional photos receiving several thousand.  Because of the hundreds of photos he’s captured, the VanLife hashtag has received over 51,000 submission from those familiar with it, creating one of the fastest growing  collaborative social experience projects on the web today.

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