Patrick Trefz is originally from Düsseldorf, Germany — a long way from his current Santa Cruz home and surf lifestyle. But it was there in Germany his love of skateboarding got the ball rolling for his current passion. It was a few well-timed jaunts into the jungle, barefoot and eating bananas and coconuts off the vine where he saw the other side. The surf side. And photography bridged the gap from land to sea.
“After surfing and camping for four weeks at this isolated spot, I ended up shooting seven pictures with my old SLR Minolta on the final day,” he recalls. I was traveling and never developed the photos for 8 months. Once I got the images back I was tripping and wished i would have shot more. I send a duplicate slide to Rip Curl and they ended up running it for a Search ad. That was the beginning of it all.”
Since then he’s shot the world’s best in the world’s best, released a book, Surfers’ Blood which showcases his 20 years on the run with the best surfers in the world. And the best part of all, and the real flex: it was all shot on film. And marked the end of an era for him. His next venture is filmmaking. And we’ll certainly be watching. Enjoy a look through Patrick’s storied archive below.