It's not every day I receive an email requesting to review a new book. Patrick Katzman debuted Thrash It Don’t Stash It Volume I in May, and is currently working on Volume II which will be available in December. When the postman handled me the package he stated: "you better use two hands this is a heavy one." He wasn't kidding, as this high-end coffee book is no ‘zine. Thrash It Don’t Stash It Volume I is top quality from the book jacket to the 200+ pages within. Patrick showcases motorcycles from the Jokers Show, Linkert Attack UK, The Trip Out 2, and Fuckerfest. I'm sure if you use any means of social media you know that the guys and gals in Europe build some righteous motorcycles.
"Thrash It Don’t Stash It Volume I is a tribute to the riders, the builders, and most importantly the vintage motorcycles, custom and original, that are being built and ridden in Europe today, around town and more often across continents. It's a documentation of the diversity of motorcycles that may have their aesthetic roots in America and the glory days of choppers and bob-jobs, but they are being built in Europe. For the past four years, I have ridden to various events, in different parts of Europe to photograph and capture the diversity of these motorcycles and the customization that goes into each one." -Patrick
I asked Patrick a handful of questions to try and get to know the man behind the lens. Enjoy.
Marcus - 1948 Panhead - Sweden
Please tell our readers a little bit about yourself...
PK - I grew up on the Westside of Los Angeles, close to Santa Monica. I was pretty much the average kid, playing sports, skateboarding, a bit of surfing, etc.. Out of high school, I moved to Santa Barbara to attend college. After a brief stint at some photography schools in SB and Pasadena, I did some freelance assisting work in Los Angeles. I met a photographer based in New York who had a bunch of work in Paris and other parts of Europe. I packed some bags and never moved back. I worked in Paris for 17 years as a photographer. Seven years ago, I met my girlfriend who is from Oslo, Norway. I moved to Oslo in 2011, and along with my photography I started directing tv commercials, music videos, promotional films, etc.. We now have a two-year-old daughter together!
How long have you been photographing?
PK - I have been taking photos for almost 30 years now. I started taking photography classes in high school. After that I was at Santa Barbara City College and met some professional surfers. I started shooting them in competitions then ended up back and forth from California and Hawaii for a few years. After I realized this is definitely what I wanted to do, I went to Brooks Institute of Photography which is also in Santa Barbara.
What was the very first camera you used to capture your world?
PK - My very first camera was my dad’s Olympus OM1 - He always had it with him when we traveled as a family so I borrowed it from him for the first couple years.
What camera do you currently use?
PK - I am currently still shooting with the Canon 5D Mrk II - It’s an indestructible camera that has great filming features.
How long have you been on two wheels?
PK - I have been riding for 22 years now. I started riding in 1995 when I was living in Paris. I rode every day for 17 years while I lived there.
What type of motorcycle do you currently ride?
PK - My first bike was a 1968 BMW R60 S/2 which I rode for five years. Sold that in 2000 to buy a 1954 Matchless G80S which I still own.
Do you have a favorite road to ride upon?
PK - In France, there are so many amazing roads to ride. Small department roads that cut through small villages and across beautiful countrysides or mountain ranges. There is an area called the Jura and Haut-Jura. I think that is my favorite place. Too many good roads to choose one.
David, Jokers MF - 1943 WLA - Sweden
When did you begin photographing motorcycles?
PK - I started photographing motorcycles when I started this book in 2013. I had been riding to Linkert Attack in France and the UK. Then I moved to Oslo, Norway and had heard about The Jokers Show in Sweden for a few years. I contact Mattias LeBeeF, who was a Joker at the time and asked if I could photograph some bikes at the show. The first bike I photographed for the book is that turquoise Knucklehead he built which is the first photo in the book.
Mattias, LeBeef Kustom Built - Knuckhead - Sweden
What are some of the events you attend throughout the year and why?
PK - It always depends upon the year and which events are going on. But some of my favorites are Linkert Attack, Flanders Chopper Bash, The Castle Run, Fuckerfest, Magic Carpet Ride, and The Trip Out.
Junior -1959 Panhead - Sweden Tobias - 1969 Panshovel - Sweden
I must commend you for putting together a kick ass book. The quality and imagery are top notch! When did the thought of creating Thrash It Don’t Stash It come about?
PK - I had been riding to these events for a few years and always admired many of the bikes. I didn’t want to just take snap shots and have them sit on my computer. So I was contemplating the idea of making a book and how it should be done. I realized using a white sheet behind the bike so that the style and lines of the bike would stand out. So that the bike would be represented as a piece of art. Which in many cases they are.
Thomas - 1948 Panhead - Norway Nicke, Vardhalla INC - 1947 Knucklehead - Sweden
Looking through Thrash It Don’t Stash it’s very evident that the motorcycle enthusiasts in Europe build sweet machines. Was it hard to pick and choose which motorcycle was featured?
PK - Yes, there are many unbelievable bikes in Europe. That is one of the reasons I did the book... At the start, I was so concentrated on setting up the background and taking the photos that I had a friend going around and choosing some of the bikes. At the time I did not know so much about the different bikes and who were the owners. So it was hard to take the photos and go around finding the owner of the bike, etc.. After a couple of years, I made friends with most of the people, and it became a much smoother process.
Where can people purchase Thrash It Don’t Stash It?
PK - Thrash It Don’t Stash is available on the website: www.thrashitdontstashit.com - I released Vol. I in May and I will start a pre-sale on Vol. II this fall and it will be out 1st of December. There are over 200 bikes in each volume. The book costs 85 Euros ( $101.69 US ) which I know is not cheap. I would rather it cost 50 Euros, so it’s more affordable for everyone. But as I have been a photographer for 25 + years and this is my first book, I did not want to spare any expense in making it. Dust jacket, canvas cover with hot foil stamped logo, on the cover, and the spine, hardbound sewed and glued binding, special 200 gram paper from Germany, the works! There are over 200 bikes in each Volume so you can look thru it multiple times and see all the details of the bikes. I am sure this is something you will pull off the shelf in 10-20 years time and be stoked to check out the bikes that were being built at that time.
Jim - 1942 WLA - England Deak - 1978 Fx 1340 - England
Would you like to give thanks to anyone?
PK -I would like to give a big thanks to Eda Lyngra for all her help in designing the book(s) and to all who stepped up and let me photograph them and their cycles!
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