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

We have spent many internet pages conversing about how significantly the pandemic has impacted the innovative globe over the earlier two many years, and in individual, we comprehend more and much more of what has been lost, like the ability to vacation. We miss the exploration, the thrill of enduring new topography, architecture, personalities, foods and the in-amongst moments of discovery that now experience like a distant memory. Photographer and filmmaker Patrick Trefz was an avid adventurer, who lived his art by receiving 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 advised us. “Wandering the globe to examine and discover, publicity to culture, craft, and persons, to escape the buildings of everyday culture. To be a wanderer, thinker, and tinkerer.” As he is set to publish his photography in Ode to Journey, Trefz chronicles what led him to create this e-book and vow to continue to be a freewheeling spirit. —Juxtapoz

It all started out in spring of 2020, a time when I typically would pack my luggage to escape the windy Pacific Ocean in Santa Cruz, California, that goes seriously lackluster once the winter season swell period is around. I would typically get off for outings all over the planet for filmmaking tasks and photography assignments to spots like Oaxaca or Chile. I’d pay a visit to friends and household all in excess of Europe. As for many of us, at this time, it was lockdown at residence. I was heading stir-nuts! To not shed my thoughts, I started out a vegetable garden with my neighbors. At least, realizing if the entire world would go upside down, we’d have carrots, lettuce and artichokes to chew on. That, merged with a newfound day by day yoga exercise, helped me greatly to retain it together.

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Later that summer months, the best storm brewed up ideal on top rated of us, in the midst of the bone dry summer season drought which is normal for California. We typically do not hope rain for 4 to 5 months. As luck would have it, and we all know the story by now, a tropical humidity process strike us in the middle of the evening and unleashed a fury of lightning and thunder with hundreds of bolts hitting the ground, resulting in hundreds of fires in California. The 1 near my dwelling, later on dubbed the CZU fire, integrated San Mateo, Santa Cruz and San Francisco counties. Following times of burning, the hearth arrived barreling through the Santa Cruz Mountains, encroaching on my town. The visibility went down to 100-ft, as our zone got a mandatory evacuation purchase and my barn/studio/home was only a fifty percent a mile absent from the giant flames. It was clear: we had to evacuate. As we jammed up Freeway 1 to remain with a good pal, Doctor John, in the coastal city of Mendocino, Northern California was on fire. At 1 position, as we were being on the 101, a giant fireplace barrel engulfed us even though capturing by means of, and I was likely 110 miles for each hour to discover an exit. It appeared like Armageddon found us.

Just remaining ready to seize the bare minimum—cats and puppies, a couple of tricky drives, passport and a couple of outfits items—felt like an wonderful act. I remaining powering my huge assortment of analog images in the steel filing cabinets. At that issue, I had not appeared at my operate in a couple of a long time, as I was busy concentrating on new initiatives. But as I left it all, I was pondering, “Well, if it burns down, then which is the time for a new begin.” Hundreds of households got burned to the ground by the fires, a large amount of my artist mates bundled. It was devastating. Soon after 10 days, the evacuation ban was lifted, we had been in a position to return to my studio barn, and thankfully almost everything was continue to there.

As Covid continued, I fell into a slight despair through the wet dim wintertime months, not getting capable to travel to see spouse and children. It was a existence-changer for so quite a few folks all over the world. Inevitably, on January 1, 2021, I started out digging into my aged files—my lust for journey was seemingly unbearable.

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As I was going by all the different countries, scanning get the job done in excess of the light-weight desk, I understood what gorgeous content was there. These files from many years of traveling experienced a forgotten magic to them, the old emulsions, the offbeat hues, gentle leaks, and an eye that was hunting for the path fewer traveled. I right away contacted my publisher, powerHouse, and pitched them the notion for Ode to Travel.

I rediscovered 30 nations around the world, from my early touring days at age 16 when I labored as a dishwasher at Deutsche Bank cleansing 1000’s of plates soon after lunch and acquired a ticket to Tunisia. Armed with an previous Minolta Srt101 and 30 rolls of expired Agfa slide movie, I explored all facets of Tunisia about 3 months like my daily life depended on it. Tromping by means of 110 diploma desert heat in lengthy trousers and a buttoned-up shirt, having trains and buses, I crisscrossed the place with an insatiable urge for food to go deep into back alleys of this historic society. The souks obtained my biggest interest, as nicely as piles of herbs and spices, substantial hundreds of watermelons, halal goat heads with a bullet gap involving the eyes, and men dressed in regular Kaftans hanging out, consuming tea, and smoking cigarettes drinking water pipes.

At 1 point in my travels, I purchased a van with a friend of mine from the Bay Space, an old 1964 Dodge, and we drove it via Mexico all the way down through Central The united states, ending up in Costa Rica. In hindsight, it was unquestionably a harrowing adventure, as we experienced some very close calls with sharks, soldiers, jail, a hurricane, narcos, crocs and other nuts stuff. But it was all the experience that will make this sort of a memory. —Patrick Trefz