If you've always wanted quit your day job and spend your life travelling the world, then you're probably already familiar with Mim + Mark of The Common Wanderer.
For the uninitiated among us, these two Aussie legends left their jobs back in 2015 and have been roaming the world ever since. They've explored over 30 countries, and luckily for us, have used their epic photography and storytelling skills to share their adventures.
In case you're wondering what life is really like when you travel the world for a living, we took five with Mim + Mark to get all the gory details.
Sum up your day job in 5 words
Telling beautiful stories about travel.
What was the turning point from posting about your travels to actually making a living from your travels?
It's tricky to pinpoint one exact turning point, as our journey from side hobby to main gig has definitely been a long and complicated one! We started The Common Wanderer right before a year-long round the world trip in 2015 and worked pretty much for free for the first 12 months, building our portfolio and client list (longer than we'd have liked to!). We were super fortunate though, in that a few of the brands we worked with were respected global brands who took a chance on two small bloggers from Australia, and they really paved the way for some good opportunities down the track.
When we arrived in London two years ago we realised we could really make something of this brand we'd built. So we doubled down, hustled really hard on top of fulltime work, used our annual leave to take business trips, worked evenings and weekends, and promised ourselves that if we had to turn down potential travel jobs due to work commitments, we'd know it was time to take a bit of a leap of faith. That day finally came earlier this year, and we've both been fulltime on TCW since April (and haven't looked back!).
How much does your Instagram account reflect the true experience?
Instagram has always been a way for us to share beautiful travel moments from our time on the road, and we try to keep it as real and authentic as possible. We're less about showing ourselves in a destination, and more about capturing the essence of a new place and its people instead.
That said, we do tend to share a more curated version of the real travel experience on our feed—and sometimes at least a week after we've actually been there! We just prefer to share our best content on Instagram, and a more rounded gallery on our blog. We try to make our Instagram stories as authentic and 'us' as possible—from the funny (or frustrating!) day to day of our travels, through working days and even the occasional fights.
Besides living the dream, what else made you choose this lifestyle?
We've both always felt like travel was part of our DNA, and we both come from creative backgrounds. Combining them seemed like a natural evolution of our careers. We just didn't realise that would be through our own business!
We really wanted to challenge ourselves creatively within the areas we already had a passion for photography and storytelling, and with a year-long trip around the world looming in 2015, we figured there was no better time to jump in! Now, we're lucky enough to combine our hobbies and passions to earn a decent living, and better yet live the life we've always aspired to.
Is there anything that actually really sucks about life on the road?
Definitely the lack of stability and not having a home base. To give you an idea, this week alone we'll have travelled from Vienna to London, London to Zurich and back, then Venice and South Tyrol before another month of back to back campaigns! It's absolutely the dream, and we wouldn't trade what we've built for anything, but we also very much crave the little things; being near our friends and family, having our own space, being able to cook a healthy meal for ourselves and have some kind of routine. Running a business on the road can be even trickier when you're not quite sure where you're going to be sleeping two nights from now!
Top 3 destinations and why?
We're huge hiking fans, and the scenery around those mountains is just unbeatable. Plus the people are some of the warmest and friendliest we've met, the food is great, and the culture a really fascinating melting pot. What's not to love!
Before we got to Namibia, someone told us it was the place to go if we wanted to feel small. They were so right. We spent 10 days road tripping through the desert and those landscapes are like nothing we've ever seen before; wild, desolate and stunningly beautiful. They don't call it the land of endless horizons for nothing!
The food, the history, the culture, the scenery. This is the epicentre of so much of our modern society, and we always find it mindblowing to walk through so much history.
Do you ever think of life after the ‘gram? What does that look like?
Instagram may be our largest channel and a place where we can showcase our work, but it's not our life—that's our website. So if Instagram were to fail tomorrow, we'd still be doing basically everything we are right now, writing, editing photos and creating video content. Beyond that, we're looking to expand out from pure blogging with the launch of a boutique content strategy and production agency over the next couple of years.
Life after that... well, maybe retirement in a Mediterranean villa somewhere!
Need some more travel inspo? Head right this way.
Image credit: The Common Wander | Design credit: Sarah Law