Juxtapoz Magazine – An Ode To Travel: The Diaries of Patrick Trefz


We have spent countless pages speaking about how substantially the pandemic has impacted the innovative environment over the previous two a long time, and in specific, we comprehend additional and much more of what has been misplaced, which includes the potential to travel. We pass up the exploration, the thrill of experiencing new topography, architecture, personalities, food and the in-concerning moments of discovery that now truly feel like a distant memory. Photographer and filmmaker Patrick Trefz was an avid adventurer, who lived his artwork by having on planes, boats and trains as he sought inspiration. “Travel was generally a way for me to be thoroughly immersed in the pursuit of that art lifestyle,” Trefz instructed us. “Wandering the world to check out and discover, exposure to lifestyle, craft, and people, to escape the constructions of each day society. To be a wanderer, thinker, and tinkerer.” As he is set to publish his photography in Ode to Vacation, Trefz chronicles what led him to produce this reserve and vow to remain a freewheeling spirit. —Juxtapoz

It all started off out in spring of 2020, a time when I generally would pack my luggage to escape the windy Pacific Ocean in Santa Cruz, California, that goes seriously lackluster once the wintertime swell season is in excess of. I would typically just take off for journeys all over the world for filmmaking assignments and pictures assignments to destinations like Oaxaca or Chile. I’d take a look at close friends and family members all around Europe. As for many of us, at this time, it was lockdown at dwelling. I was likely stir-crazy! To not get rid of my brain, I started out a vegetable garden with my neighbors. At the very least, understanding if the environment would go upside down, we’d have carrots, lettuce and artichokes to chew on. That, combined with a newfound everyday yoga exercise, served me enormously to maintain it with each other.

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Afterwards that summer, the best storm brewed up proper on top rated of us, in the midst of the bone dry summer season drought which is ordinary for California. We normally do not hope rain for 4 to 5 months. As luck would have it, and we all know the tale by now, a tropical moisture process strike us in the middle of the evening and unleashed a fury of lightning and thunder with hundreds of bolts hitting the floor, resulting in hundreds of fires in California. The one particular in the vicinity of my property, later on dubbed the CZU fireplace, included San Mateo, Santa Cruz and San Francisco counties. After times of burning, the hearth came barreling by means of the Santa Cruz Mountains, encroaching on my city. The visibility went down to 100-feet, as our zone acquired a mandatory evacuation buy and my barn/studio/residence was only a 50 percent a mile absent from the large flames. It was apparent: we had to evacuate. As we jammed up Freeway 1 to stay with a great friend, Physician John, in the coastal city of Mendocino, Northern California was on hearth. At one particular point, as we ended up on the 101, a huge hearth barrel engulfed us whilst taking pictures by way of, and I was going 110 miles per hour to obtain an exit. It appeared like Armageddon found us.

Just getting equipped to grab the bare minimum—cats and puppies, a few challenging drives, passport and a pair of clothing items—felt like an amazing act. I remaining guiding my huge assortment of analog images in the metallic filing cabinets. At that place, I had not looked at my function in a few decades, as I was busy concentrating on new jobs. But as I still left it all, I was imagining, “Well, if it burns down, then which is the time for a new start out.” Hundreds of houses bought burned to the floor by the fires, a whole lot of my artist close friends provided. It was devastating. Soon after 10 times, the evacuation ban was lifted, we ended up equipped to return to my studio barn, and luckily almost everything was still there.

As Covid ongoing, I fell into a slight despair for the duration of the wet dim wintertime months, not remaining in a position to travel to see household. It was a lifestyle-changer for so several folks around the globe. At some point, on January 1, 2021, I started off digging into my old files—my lust for travel was seemingly unbearable.

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As I was likely through all the diverse international locations, scanning get the job done around the gentle table, I understood what beautiful content was there. All those information from decades of touring experienced a forgotten magic to them, the outdated emulsions, the offbeat colors, gentle leaks, and an eye that was seeking for the route fewer traveled. I right away contacted my publisher, powerHouse, and pitched them the concept for Ode to Journey.

I rediscovered 30 international locations, from my early touring times at age 16 when I worked as a dishwasher at Deutsche Financial institution cleansing countless numbers of plates following lunch and acquired a ticket to Tunisia. Armed with an old Minolta Srt101 and 30 rolls of expired Agfa slide film, I explored all elements of Tunisia about 3 months like my everyday living depended on it. Tromping by means of 110 degree desert warmth in very long pants and a buttoned-up shirt, having trains and buses, I crisscrossed the country with an insatiable urge for food to go deep into again alleys of this historical culture. The souks acquired my largest awareness, as properly as piles of herbs and spices, massive hundreds of watermelons, halal goat heads with a bullet gap among the eyes, and adult men dressed in common Kaftans hanging out, consuming tea, and smoking cigarettes water pipes.

At a single stage in my travels, I acquired a van with a pal of mine from the Bay Region, an previous 1964 Dodge, and we drove it by means of Mexico all the way down through Central The usa, ending up in Costa Rica. In hindsight, it was certainly a harrowing adventure, as we experienced some extremely shut phone calls with sharks, soldiers, prison, a storm, narcos, crocs and other nuts things. But it was all the experience that helps make these kinds of a memory. —Patrick Trefz



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