Romanticizing Old Texas

Old West Mural, Texas Land and Cattle - Austin, Texas

Old West Mural, Texas Land and Cattle – Austin, Texas

I recently talked about the misconceptions I had about Texas, before I moved to Austin, back when I lived in the East Coast. I blogged about it last week in a post called “Texas is not Full of Cattle”. But, I think you can forgive my ignorance, when even places in Austin perpetuate a certain myth about Texas. There is a romantic notion of the Old West, of independence and freedom at a time when life was simpler, I guess.

The reality is that the majority of Texans now live in cities. The top five cities by population, as of 2016, Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, Austin and Fort Worth. A total of about 6.8 million people. But the mystique of the cowboy with horse, on a cattle drive, is powerful.

I shot this in a restaurant called Texas Land and Cattle, over the weekend. A regional steak chain with multiple outlets in the big cities of Texas. With faux logs, a rustic interior with murals, it tries to invoke a time long gone.

Shot with the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II with the Olympus 14-150mm lens. It’s a slow lens and it was dark, so I shot it at 1/8 of a second.


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8 thoughts on “Romanticizing Old Texas

  1. Interesting facts Andy. The romantic vision of cowboys roaming the ranges comes from the old movies. Some notes of comparison between Texas and the province of British Columbia, where I live in the capital city of Victoria on Vancouver Island, the city of
    Vancouver is on the mainland not Vancouver Island, some people become confused about that. The stats are, B.C. is bigger than Texas with a total area of 944,735 km2 (364,764 mi2). Texas has an area of 696,241 km2 (268,820 mi2), or B.C. is 1.4 times larger than Texas. The population is interesting too, Texas, as you mentioned has 6.8 million people with the bulk in 5 cities, B.C. has 4.7 million with the bulk of 2.5 million in Metro Vancouver, so the bulk of our population is in one city. Comparing country size and population, Canada is 9,984,670 km² (2nd) or 3,854,085 sq mi. USA is 9,631,420 km² (3rd) or 3,718,695 sq mi. Population, Canada is roughly 35 million while the USA is roughly 321 million, quite a difference.
    Cheers,
    John

    1. Interesting data. I didn’t know that the province of BC was that large. A clarification on Texas’ population. There is a long tail of cities and the 6.8 million is the population for the top 5 cities. In total, the State of Texas has 27 million, second largest state in the U.S., after California, which has 39 million. Lot’s of people.

      Of course, metropolitan Tokyo, which also includes the surrounding areas and Yokohama, has a population of 38 million, in an area of 5,200 mi2. Crazy.

      1. Thanks Andy. Wow, the population of Texas is only 8 million short of the entire population of Canada and Metro Tokyo with 38 million in such a small area compared to the entire country of Canada with 3 million less, I can’t imagine living in Tokyo.
        Cheers,
        John

    1. The lens works surprisingly well with the the E-M5 II, because of the 5 stop IS. The thing is, if it’s a stop faster, it’s going to be a lot bigger and much more expensive.

      The new 12-100 f4 Pro, is nice lens but kind of large on the E-M5 II, at least without the extra grip. And it costs $1299.

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