Photo Essay: Deep in the Heart of Texas

Hatchet photographer Karsyn Meyerson explores her home state, Texas, and its significance in her upbringing.

At the age of 7, I became a Texan. A title I was slow to accept — I didn’t fit the stereotype in my head. It wasn’t until I moved away for college that I realized being a Texan is so much more than saying “y’all” and wearing cowboy boots. It’s about the appreciation for the place and people. The “moo cows” on the pasture by my childhood home where I would stop by with my bulldog, Gunny, to say “Hello.”

Over the past year, I have slowly begun to photograph parts of the state that I hold with me even while I am in D.C. Exploring my hometown and seeing it from a perspective that I didn’t have while growing up in Texas, I found a new sense of appreciation for the people, agriculture, landscape and small details that I overlooked time and time again. This rang true for me each time I visited back home, and an old plot of the beautiful landscape had been replaced with an office building or a grocery store.

A newborn calf makes eye contact with me at the pasture near my childhood home.

Ropes abandoned in the woods. Exploring has become a huge part of my time when I am home from college — trying to find new parts of my hometown and learn more about where I grew up.

The longhorn, along with the other cows, at the pasture near my home. The longhorn has lived in the pasture since I moved to Texas.

A spiderweb in Boerne, Texas. For the past three years, my family has taken a “staycation” in Boerne. This home is in hill country and surrounded by vibrant landscape and wildlife.

The kitchen window of the Stone House we visited while in Boerne. A lot of memories have been made in this kitchen. In the morning, I would look at this window and admire the light.

The Texas night sky. The song “Deep in the Heart of Texas” is one of my core memories from home. The line “the stars at night are big and bright” never rang more true until I visited Boerne.

A portrait of my younger brother, Kam. Leaving home to go to college in a different state has made me further appreciate the time I have with Kam.

Portrait of my “younger brother,” Nick. He is not blood related but is my younger brother in every way that counts. Him and Kam have been best friends since kindergarten, and since then, I have become his “older sister.”

A cowboy holds the reins of his horse at the Fort Worth Stockyards. The Stockyards are a Texas staple and one of my favorite places to go when I am home. The first time I went to the stockyards I was around 8 years old and fell in love with community it brought together.

Every Sunday I have lunch with my grandfather at La Madeline in Allen, Texas. This particular day he wanted to show me his new cowboy hat.

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