Eric Giuliani is a traveling artist, writer, videographer and photographer.
After becoming disenchanted with his job as a consultant, Eric decided to travel the world and document his adventures as a form of self exploration, self discovery, and an opportunity to awaken his true creative potential. He created the website “Travel Tall” to document his journey and connect with his audience. Determined to navigate the globe without the use of planes, he has used creative (and inspiring) methods to pay for lodging and other necessities. One thing that also stood out about Eric was his impressive height. At 6’9, he is quite tall and I was curious as to how his stature factors into the logistical side of his travels. Standing 6’6 myself, I couldn't help but imagine myself experiencing some of the downsides of “traveling tall”.
Aside from the obvious connection to his site, Travel Tall symbolizes one’s ability to stand strong in the face of adversity, uncertainty, and fulfilling your dreams. I had the opportunity to speak with Eric to learn more about him and share his story with my audience.
Prox: Tell us about yourself. Where did you grow up, what did you do before you began traveling, and what pushed you towards this kind of endeavor?
Eric: I grew up in a small town in Pennsylvania called Coopersburg. After college, I moved to Hawaii and then Seattle and Miami. Before I left to travel around the world I was an educational consultant for a software company. The routine and lack of creativity in that job pushed me to pursue a life of travel, I hated what I was doing each day, but I am grateful that I disliked it because it pushed me to learn new skills and find a way out of it. Had I liked my job, maybe I would have continued with it.
Prox: Was this something you always wanted to do? What stopped you from doing this earlier on in your life?
Eric: I always loved traveling and being creative, but I really didn’t have a background in film, photography or writing. I always just kind of assumed that I wasn’t creative enough to do those things and to learn how to do them as an adult (I’m 36); I think a lot of times we doubt ourselves and our insecurities stop us from really going for our dreams.
Prox: Has your height been an inconvenience during your travels? What are some special adjustments you’ve had to make to accommodate your size?
Eric: Being tall (6’9) and traveling is really challenging, but its one of the things that I'm just so used to at this point that it almost doesn’t bother me. If a bed has a footboard, I will have to put the mattress on the floor so I have enough room for my feet to hang off. I'm always crammed into bus or train seats, but its worth it to see the world. I'm currently driving a car across the USA that is too small, I actually have to take my shoes off to drive it.
Prox: Where are some of the greatest places you’ve traveled thus far? What was it about these places that inspired you so much?
Eric: I really loved them all, but some of my favorites are Tofo Beach in Mozambique, Sudan, Santorini in Greece, London, Melbourne and I really loved driving across Arizona and Utah. I am inspired by natural landscapes more so than man made things. I love sunrises and sunsets and just being out on the open road, which is why I choose to travel without using an airplane.
Prox: Is there a place that you haven’t gone yet that you’re excited to visit?
Eric: I am headed to Antarctica with Antarpply Expeditions in January and I think that is going to be really incredible. I'm going to be taking pictures and making a film for them of the 11 day cruise.
Prox: If you could turn back time and tell yourself something before you began this journey, what would it be?
Eric: I actually wouldn’t tell myself anything, all the learning and growth has come during the down times and had I somehow avoided those times, I wouldn’t be growing into the person I am.
Prox: Ultimately, what are some of the most important things you’ve learned about yourself, and the world during this undertaking?
Eric: The hardest thing in the world is to find, follow and then stick with your dream.
First and foremost, I’ve learned that if you have a dream, that you have to pursue it with everything you have. It’s like a marriage, you might not always like it, but deep down I always love it. There are hard times, but those hard times lead to really getting to know myself and make the great times that much better. I think the hardest thing in the world is to really tap into what your dream is and that everyone should really take the time to figure out what they love to do because once you do that, then you can make the choice to pursue it. Once that dream gets into your “bloodstream” it really does a lot of the heavy lifting and if you just keep taking baby steps towards it it will do the same towards you.
Prox: Favorite hobbies?
Eric: I think of all the things that I'm doing (traveling, writing, filming, photographing) as hobbies which is why I think it’s working out. I'm doing the things I love to do every single day, but besides that I am sports fan, so I try to keep up with the English Premiership, NFL, and NBA.
Prox: Who are some of your favorite contemporary artists?
Eric: To be honest, I don’t really have any.
Prox: Information on upcoming releases and projects?
Eric: I will be headed to South America in December and then to Antarctic, once that is done I hope to get across the Atlantic Ocean which will complete my around the world overland journey.
Prox: Tips for aspiring artists and travelers?
Eric: For artists, don't compromise your creativity to fit into something that is easy to sell. I’d much rather be true to my own self and creativity and fail than anything else.
As for travelers, develop a skill that you can use to travel for free or at least save you some money. My example is that I am able to create films and photos for hotels in exchange for a room, which has worked all over the world, In two years of travel, I’ve spent less than $100 on hotels. But I’ve also met an electrician that travels and does the same, he was doing electrical work for hotels in Africa in exchange for a room, so create a service you can offer to hotels or airlines or whatever that will allow you to save some money and then once you do that, then worry about how you’re going to make money.
Prox: Final Thoughts?
Eric: When you’re about to quit, take a deep breathe, know that even in this time of real struggle, you’re feeling real feelings and emotions and what’s better than that? If it were easy, everybody would be doing it.
You can learn more about Eric, here.
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