I’m a big believer in reflection. Without, it’s so east to look past how far we’ve come. As I hit the publish button on the latest issue of Vagabundo Magazine, I couldn’t help but lean back in time and think to the first issue I ever published.
I was hanging out in Arizona, trying to save money to get back out on the road and travel. I had no idea how to use inDesign, the program I was told was best to design a magazine. I had gathered a team of newbie writers to help with the writing, and am forever grateful for their work. But over a week’s time, I had designed (poorly), edited (poorly), and published (inconsistently) the first ever issue of Vagabundo Magazine. Before finally launching the issue, I had stayed awaked about 70 hours straight getting it all together.
Truth be told, the first issue was probably better than I see it now, although I’m so embarrassed about the design that I don’t even sell it anywhere anymore. Over 2 years later, and I’ve learned so much. Without looking back, it’s so easy to forget how far myself and this travel magazine have come.
Now, Vagabundo Magazine has a contributor’s base of about 40 people. We have a great designer (that isn’t me, thank the gods) in Tiffany Wuest, and I have an associate editor in Lauren Crabbe who is working far below her deserved pay grade with us. I’m lucky to have all of them on my side of the battle.
But beyond the team, beyond my own progress, even the magazine has grown. The first issue was a well-intentioned travel magazine looking for its place in the world. The content was good, but it was lacking that maturity to really inspire. I’m 100% positive this new issue will move you. It will inspire you not only to get out and explore, but to be a better global citizen no matter where you are.
In the same lines with what I just mentioned, Alice Martins whom I met in Brazil while she was working in a hostel I stayed at in Florianopolis, Brazil about 3 years ago, is the big feature of this magazine. Today, she’s a highly acclaimed photojournalist who has covered everything from surfing girls in the Gaza Strip to the civil war in Syria. She’s as brave as anyone I know, and her work is beyond powerful. It’s just baffling to me that we’ve come so far from where we were when she checked me into that hostel way back when.
Of course, there are other more tradition travel pieces in this magazine, too. I have a feature on Bosnia-Herzegovina, William Wolf writes about his adventure getting to Navarino Island in southern Chile, Eric Gonzalez writes about the slums called Nail City Guangzhou, and there are many other brilliant pieces of work. I promise you’ll like it.
As for me, I may have come along way. But I’m still as broke as I ever was. I left home 5 years ago with $500 in my pocket and a dream of seeing the world. 80+ countries, 6 continents, and 7 issues of a magazine I’m so proud of it hurts, and that same $500 still sits there – nothing more, nothing less.
My dream to travel fuels my desire to push others to explore as well. And over these past 5 years, I hope I’ve inspired even a fraction as much as the world has inspired me.
If you’re interested in picking up the latest issue, read all about it here.