Willie Nelson once famously sang “My heroes have always been cowboys and they still are, it seems”. Growing up in the country and lying by the TV watching John Wayne movies with my grandpa, I knew what Willie sang was true for me, too. The western way of living feeds my soul and I fully believe it should be documented. My passion for ranch photography and the pictures I take represent landscapes, peoples, and traditions… the last of a dying breed.
Heart 6 Guest Ranch in Moran, Wyoming
Three Sisters Ranch in Mackay, Idaho
Willow Creek Bison in Strasburg, Colorado
D Bar Ranch in Katy, Texas
6666 Ranch in Guthrie, Texas
R.A. Brown Ranch in Throckmorton, Texas
I’ve been told to dream big ever since I was a little girl. When I was 5 years old, my family moved to Texas because my dad had always wanted to be a landowner. Leaving our house in the suburbs of Colorado, we moved to a small Texas town, complete with an old courthouse square, more cotton fields than people, and acres upon acres to roam. By age 9, I was raising pigs for 4-H (naming them after my teachers), while my sister was barrel racing and showing horses. Our chores included cleaning pens, picking up limbs from pecan trees, and playing outside with the neighbor kids until supper time.
I grew like a weed, but my dreams did too. I always told my friends that I was going to own a huge ranch in the middle of nowhere. When I started my photography business, I started a “ranch account,” putting away pennies here and there to fund my dream. At age 24, my grandmother and I went to look at a couple acres to purchase for me to take pictures on. When we got home without falling in love, I found another place online… which was more than a couple acres. Three days later, I was the proud owner of my own place.
Turning dreams into reality, I named it the “Hitchin’ Post Ranch,” after my Australian Shepard. Now no matter where I travel or when I go, I can always come home to the Hitchin’ Post. There’s dewberry vines by the arena, tomato plants in my raised garden, a porch to drink coffee on, calves born in the springtime, and a sunset over the pond you can’t even capture in a picture.