patrick trefz | Films
PATRICK TREFZ LIVES AND WORKS IN SANTA CRUZ, CALIFORNIA. HE IS A DIRECTOR, PRODUCER AND PHOTOGRAPHER AND IS WIDELY ACCLAIMED FOR THREE FEATURE-LENGTH DOCUMENTARY FILMS, THREAD (2007), IDIOSYNCRASIES (2010), AND SURFERS’ BLOOD (2016). HE HAS DIRECTED MULTIPLE MUSIC VIDEOS, COMMERCIALS, AND SHORTS. AS A PHOTOGRAPHER, HIS WORK HAS APPEARED IN PUBLICATIONS INCLUDING SURFER, BIG, GEO AND THE NEW YORK TIMES. HE IS THE AUTHOR OF SANTA CRUZ: VISIONS OF SURF CITY (SOLIDPUBLISHING, 2002), THREAD (POWERHOUSE, 2009), AND SURFERS’ BLOOD (POWERHOUSE BOOKS, 2012).
DIRECTOR, PRODUCER,PHOTOGRAPHER, PATRICK TREFZ, THREAD, SURFERS’ BLOOD, SURF CITY, surf, surf photography, analog, noir, black and white, film, movies, documentary, doc, doc film, german, german speaking, surfer, surfing, water, shaper, surfboard, surfboard design, shaping, shape, design, duesseldorf, paris, suburu,
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By Joel Patterson, Editor, Surfer Magazine

Surfers’ Blood is a mid-career retrospective, consisting of images from Trefz’s two decades of travel, documenting surf culture the world over. With work from his 10-year stint as a staff photographer at Surfer Magazine, as well as stills from his more recent filmmaking endeavors, Surfers’ Blood shines a light into surfing’s less commercial corners, exposing a community of wave riders and regions that are generally unavailable in the mainstream surf media. Trefz utilizes a wide variety of equipment — 35-mm and medium-format analog cameras, as well as digital technologies — to create a body of work that, for all its topical diversity, is unusually uniform in texture, energy, and depth. His success has not come by riding the coattails of media-savvy professional surfers, or by endlessly following the World Tour. Rather, Trefz has built lasting relationships with people and places — relationships that have stood the test of time and require real commitment to make last. It is these relationships that have allowed Trefz to glimpse (and capture) the essence of international surfing culture.

Nominated for ‘Best Documentary’ of the year at Surfer Magazine Awards

After a successful world premiere at the San Sebastian International Film Festival in September, Surfers’ Blood is continuing big screening events in the US on the East and West coast, Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, Brazil

The online release is going to launch on December 5th via Red Bull Media House. RBMH is the co-producer, opening up the mainstream access of the viewership tremendously. Red Bull TV is a global multi-platform channel, distributed digitally on connected TVs, smartphones, tablets, and on its website The channel is available globally and free of charge. Programming is in English language (with optional subtitles and closed captions) and airs across all territories regardless of the country in which it’s produced. Red Bull TV is also available on Apple TV

I was traveling to the Basque country on a very loose SURFER mag assignment with Shawn Barney Barron sometime around 2007.

We visitied friends and family, enroute to Bilbao in northern Spain, where we were going to pick up surfer/landartist Jim Denevan, coming in from Miami.

Torrential downpours made it tough to navigate along the rugged coastline but we did make it, only to find out that Denevan missed his plane in Miami.

Sancho drove us to Orio, a small coastal village tucked in between the coast cliffs, a river and a high way over pass, to meet Patxi Oliden. At the time he was in his mid 80ies. A machinist by trade, he is a self-taught shaper. He started to make affordable boards for the local kids in the 70ies so they could surf the local breakwater. Both Barney and I agreed that Patxi should be part of our assignment story. The magazine never went for it – so last year I revisited Mr. Oliden to include him in my documentary film, ‘Surfers’ Blood’ He is 94 now and came out from Orio to the world premier to the international film festival in San Sebastian last fall where he hasn’t been in 8 years!