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

ByMary E. Alvarez

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We have used plenty of web pages talking about how substantially the pandemic has impacted the innovative world more than the past two a long time, and in unique, we notice a lot more and much more of what has been misplaced, like the ability to journey. We miss the exploration, the thrill of encountering new topography, architecture, personalities, foodstuff and the in-concerning times of discovery that now truly feel like a distant memory. Photographer and filmmaker Patrick Trefz was an avid adventurer, who lived his artwork by obtaining on planes, boats and trains as he sought inspiration. “Travel was usually a way for me to be entirely immersed in the pursuit of that art everyday living,” Trefz instructed us. “Wandering the globe to discover and find out, exposure to culture, craft, and folks, to escape the structures of day-to-day modern society. To be a wanderer, thinker, and tinkerer.” As he is set to publish his pictures in Ode to Vacation, Trefz chronicles what led him to generate this reserve and vow to continue being a freewheeling spirit. —Juxtapoz

It all commenced out in spring of 2020, a time when I normally would pack my luggage to escape the windy Pacific Ocean in Santa Cruz, California, that goes seriously lackluster at the time the wintertime swell season is above. I would commonly consider off for journeys all in excess of the world for filmmaking assignments and pictures assignments to destinations like Oaxaca or Chile. I’d stop by buddies and household all around Europe. As for lots of of us, at this time, it was lockdown at household. I was going stir-outrageous! To not shed my intellect, I begun a vegetable yard with my neighbors. At the very least, realizing if the earth would go upside down, we’d have carrots, lettuce and artichokes to chew on. That, blended with a newfound each day yoga follow, helped me tremendously to keep it collectively.

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Afterwards that summer time, the great storm brewed up suitable on top of us, in the midst of the bone dry summertime drought that is typical for California. We typically do not expect rain for 4 to 5 months. As luck would have it, and we all know the tale by now, a tropical moisture system strike us in the middle of the night and unleashed a fury of lightning and thunder with 1000’s of bolts hitting the ground, ensuing in hundreds of fires in California. The 1 near my residence, later on dubbed the CZU fireplace, included San Mateo, Santa Cruz and San Francisco counties. Soon after days of burning, the hearth came barreling via the Santa Cruz Mountains, encroaching on my city. The visibility went down to 100-toes, as our zone acquired a obligatory evacuation get and my barn/studio/residence was only a 50 % a mile absent from the large flames. It was crystal clear: we had to evacuate. As we jammed up Freeway 1 to continue to be with a fantastic good friend, Physician John, in the coastal town of Mendocino, Northern California was on fire. At one particular level, as we had been on the 101, a huge fire barrel engulfed us though capturing by means of, and I was going 110 miles for every hour to locate an exit. It seemed like Armageddon identified us.

Just becoming able to get the bare minimum—cats and puppies, a handful of hard drives, passport and a few of outfits items—felt like an remarkable act. I still left powering my giant assortment of analog pictures in the metal filing cabinets. At that point, I experienced not appeared at my get the job done in a handful of decades, as I was occupied concentrating on new projects. But as I remaining it all, I was considering, “Well, if it burns down, then that’s the time for a new start out.” Hundreds of homes bought burned to the floor by the fires, a ton of my artist pals involved. It was devastating. After 10 days, the evacuation ban was lifted, we were in a position to return to my studio barn, and luckily for us every little thing was nonetheless there.

As Covid continued, I fell into a slight despair all through the wet dim winter season months, not currently being in a position to travel to see household. It was a daily life-changer for so a lot of men and women all over the globe. Inevitably, on January 1, 2021, I started digging into my previous files—my lust for vacation was seemingly unbearable.

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As I was going by way of all the distinctive nations around the world, scanning work more than the gentle desk, I recognized what wonderful materials was there. People files from a long time of traveling experienced a forgotten magic to them, the previous emulsions, the offbeat shades, light-weight leaks, and an eye that was looking for the path considerably less traveled. I instantly contacted my publisher, powerHouse, and pitched them the thought for Ode to Journey.

I rediscovered 30 countries, from my early traveling times at age 16 when I worked as a dishwasher at Deutsche Financial institution cleaning thousands of plates just after lunch and acquired a ticket to Tunisia. Armed with an outdated Minolta Srt101 and 30 rolls of expired Agfa slide film, I explored all facets of Tunisia above 3 weeks like my lifestyle depended on it. Tromping through 110 diploma desert warmth in long trousers and a buttoned-up shirt, getting trains and buses, I crisscrossed the place with an insatiable urge for food to go deep into back alleys of this historical culture. The souks obtained my major focus, as very well as piles of herbs and spices, big hundreds of watermelons, halal goat heads with a bullet gap among the eyes, and gentlemen dressed in common Kaftans hanging out, drinking tea, and using tobacco drinking water pipes.

At one particular level in my travels, I purchased a van with a friend of mine from the Bay Location, an outdated 1964 Dodge, and we drove it via Mexico all the way down via Central The united states, ending up in Costa Rica. In hindsight, it was undoubtedly a harrowing experience, as we had some pretty near phone calls with sharks, soldiers, prison, a storm, narcos, crocs and other mad stuff. But it was all the journey that helps make this kind of a memory. —Patrick Trefz



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