Imagine after posting your first ever Snapchat you become a viral sensation overnight. That's exactly what happened to Tristan de Burgh, better know to his fans as TristanTales. The young video creator realized that his Snapchat feed was full of stories without a full narrative. Instead, most people's Snapchat stories focused on singular instances of their day.
Hoping to change things up, Tristan decided to don a safari uniform, head over to USC's campus, and give viewers a safari tour of frat guys in their natural habitat: the college gymnasium. His hysterical antics and catch phrase-worthy commentary caught the attention of hundreds of thousands of people overnight.
His choice to join the platform really paid off. Not only was he one of the first people to use Snapchat's story feature to illustrate narrative stories that play like a short film, but he also created his own technique known to fans as the Choose Your Own Snapventure, where the viewers can help decide where Tristan's snap story goes in real-time. And Tristan's innovative efforts haven't just been noticed by his dedicated following. He was also recently nominated for a Shorty Award for the Snapchatter of the Year category and has been working alongside some of the biggest brands to create new, exciting social campaigns.
He's well on his way to being one of the most important viral video creators in the social media space. We recently sat down with Tristan de Burgh about how he got his start on Snapchat, what it was like going viral overnight, and more!
And for even more Tristan de Burgh news, head over to AOL.com at 6 p.m. ET for more exclusive features, including his most memorable fan encounters.
When did you decide to join Snapchat?
I was always very late to the social media game. I got on Snapchat last March and I was looking at my friend's stories and it was just food or parities and it was just so disjointed. I kept thinking about how nothing really strung together to tell an actual story. By the end of that week, I decided I was going to tell the best damn Snapchat story anyone has ever told. So I threw on a safari tour guide outfit and went to my college gym. I interacted with all the frat stars in their own environment.
That one blew up too! What was that like for you going viral overnight?
I woke up with 100,000 views the next morning. I checked my phone and there was just plus sign after plus sign from people adding me. I thought that I would never make a Snapchat story again since I thought it was too much. But it really was remarkable to see. These weren't just views; people were engaging with me and interacting with the story. It was almost like having pen pals from around the world. I don't think any social media platform has that same level of interaction.
Is that the reason why you gravitate towards your narrative story-telling style?
Yeah, absolutely. I went to USC and studied Business and Film. With my cinema background, I already had a foundation for storytelling. And I realized that it wasn't being done on Snapchat so I wanted to be one of the first people to do it.
How has your technical film background changed the way you operate as a Snapchatter?
It allowed me to find unique ways to tell a story on a platform that's very limiting. You have to make videos on the app, clips are limited to 10 seconds, you can't edit or rearrange clips. So figuring out how to create the best clips based on these limitations is really opens up a lot of room for creativity in a way that's lost when you have all these other things that help you fabricate the world. It's really authentic.
Take us behind the scenes of your Snap story. What happens from start to finish?
It varies on story to story. I try to find a balance between preparing for my stories and just going with the flow, because one of the best things on Snapchat is the spontaneity of it. I often times will come up with a story the day of and film it later that evening. Or I'll go out on the street and interact with strangers. There isn't much preparation that goes into it to be honest.
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Meet Tristan de Burgh, Snapchat's most influential comedian
What are you looking at 👀😂
How I look every day because life is too short to not have fun with yourself 🙆🏻
Move the way you want to move 💃🏼
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Bonjour, je m'appelle Meredith. Comment t'appelle tu?
Out of my 3 years of studying French this is one of the only things I remember 😂👋
AHH!!! We hit 3MILLION subbies today!! 💞🎉😭🎂 I love my #macbabies so so much!!! You all mean the WORLD to me!!! Our family is growing so much! Thank you for allowing me to just be my awkward self. I love you and I can never thank you enough for all the opportunities you've given me!! 💞🎉🎂✨😱
i like pink doors ♡
ps..new video going up soon! ahh who's excited?!? link in my bio! also, what's your fav color?! hehe 💞✌🏼️🎉
until next time thailand ♡
ps...guess who just uploaded a vlog!! you get a sneak peek of my final room decor!! ahh! also, how did you find my youtube channel? i'm so curious! 💞🌎✌🏼️
i just wanna travel the world ✈️ where should I go next ?😉
so ready for halloween 👻
SOOOO, I just uploaded a brand new HALLOWEEN VIDEO!! Click the link in my bio to watch!🎃
eye see you 👀 Ps: thank you all for your amazing and continued support. I want you all to know how much I love and appreciate you so much. xoxo
Have you seen my new video yet!? It's all about music festivals so make sure to check it out on my YouTube channel! + there's some friends in it☺️
My new video is dropping today!!! Can you guess what it'll be..?😗
u like em crazy babe don't u
the #londonhasfallen premiere last night 🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧
when the waiter passes your table with food
Love him 💕
Fun fact : purple and orange teacups are the fastest! :)
WE OUT HERE AT THE #KCA's and the inner child in me is screaming.
trying my hardest to be "fierce"....
Welcome to slime history @rebelwilson !! 😁😂 #KCA2016
2 0 1 6 - #HAPPYNEWYEAR on the water 2-5~6
We love taking walks, no phones, just talking about life. If you can, make time every week to take a 30-minute walk with a friend or a loved one. It's a cool way to get to know each other on a deeper level!
Leap year gives us all 24 extra hours to #DayItForward! We’ve teamed up w/ @Chevrolet to send love to #UsTheFamily - check out our Twitter feed tomorrow!!
Have you heard?! We're joining our friends @ptxofficial on the first leg of their World Tour this Spring! Click the link in our bio for tix, or visit https://www.ustheduo.com/tour :) PUMPED to meet some new and current #UsTheFamily members!
NEW VIDEO: Creepy Things Girls Do 😂 Comment a, "🐬" if you've watched it/will watch it
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I came here to live life like nobody is watching ❥ ♡
Happy Valentine's Day loves❤️
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Soft curls and red lips 💋 // 📷: @torrancecoombs
Every girl ought to have a pair of nude suede pumps! Nothing like New shoes Monday with @mgemi. Get more details on @liketoknow.it www.liketk.it/2fcOb #liketkit #lovemgemi
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Your not ready for this #chromat #nyfw #teamthis
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When it's "chilly" out 😜 #ootd
ATL tonight 😏
had the King of LA @yg come through last night 🙏🏽
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Eating all that sushi finally turned me into a mermaid! 😭
for @projectmermaids #saveourbeach
Photography by @angelinaventurellaphoto
Hair and Makeup by @ljbeauty
Bra by @edwordgarcia
Sponsored by @sexyhair
Project Manager @crissycrissybobissy
If you know me well or have read interviews I’ve done then you know that @marthastewart has always been my biggest inspiration when it comes to food. One of my goals is to be a combination of my two idols- Martha and Andy Warhol. As a child I would dream about spending the time and care like her to prepare a table, creating something very special for people to join around and share a meal. Watching her cook inspired me to teach myself how to hand weigh ingredients, to always have my mise en place organized, how to pronounce words like vichyssoise, and her wide usage of produce variety is honestly a large part of where my curiosity for our food sparked from. With this said, I’m sure you can imagine my surprise when I was told that I was one of the 25 creatives @marthastewart is inspired by in celebration of their 25th anniversary. Thank you for helping me think and dream so big Martha, I am honored to share this and to make you all of the colors. #25yearsofmartha #foodgradients
I wanted to take a moment to reintroduce myself. I’m Brittany and I recognize that I seem to do a decent job of not sharing much about my actual self here or in interviews. I prefer to keep my art about the food and not myself. This community and my photography have become the biggest part of my life, I love it more than I have words to explain but there's more that makes me who I am. So for a quick moment here’s a bit- I’m 24, a taurus, live in Seattle but grew up in San Diego, my favorite food is a cheeseburger (super thin patty, toasted bun), my favorite bands are @stygoc and @metric, my first tattoo was the one on chest- it’s still my favorite and says ‘love your life’, something many people sadly forget. I was raised by my grandparents, I love to make small collections of items like rocks and stickers, I grew up playing a lot of sports competitively, I love Star Wars and have Boba Fett tattooed on my arm but Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is my favorite movie. Many times I have been told that being an artist “can’t be a real job” and that I was wasting my time trying to do so. I smile everyday not because I proved them wrong but because I achieved a goal. Dream big, everyone.
Thought I might start this week off with a past candy photo. Here's to hoping you all have the best days ahead! #foodgradients
Köln!!!! Didn't pronounce your name right on stage but... You were AMAZING. Only a couple shows left in EU-- next up, London... (📷: @annamaria_langer )
Practicing our Spanish with @tvtelehit Mexico 🇲🇽
Sam wants to play Jack & Rose in Titanic but Casey's all "nah i'm good, have fun tho mang"
We drove 28 hours to get to Canada. The jeep is still running💀😍
The Dallas episode for @heyusax is the funniest yet! Go watch it now on @go90 now!😄😄