San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

No Bluebonnets This Year by Mark Holly

I love the ability to capture and create scenes that might brighten someone’s day … I hope that people who are unable to visit these sites will be able to enjoy their beauty. The Texas Hill Country keeps me inspired, and I worry about our natural resources. I hope its beauty will remain for generations to come.”

— Boerne resident MARK HOLLY, whose mesmerizing composition of a dead tree amid a parched landscape won the grand prize in this year’s Hill Country Alliance photography contest.


Striking photographs captured by across the Texas Hill Country will be featured in a 2015 calendar published by an Austin-based conservation group. About 400 images were entered into the Hill Country Alliance’s 2014 photo contest, an annual event that collects “stunning and evocative” depictions of the scenic 25-county region, said Christy Muse, the organization’s executive director.

Stars over the Rail Road Bridge by Tod Grubbs

This happened to be just what we were hoping for – the perfect combination of a moonless night, the star-filled galaxy, and the railroad bridge. The unique and varied landscapes of Central Texas bring me a lot of joy as a photographer.”

— TOD GRUBBS, a Spicewood photographer who took this photograph of a railroad truss bridge over Wrights Creek in Llano County. The photograph, titled “Stars over the Rail Road Bridge,” won first place in the the alliance’s contest.

Texas Alien by Tom Conner

The smaller life forms we encounter every day are very often overlooked. If we slow down and really take time to observe them, they each offer something interesting. Capturing the magnificence and mystery of Texas wildlife is my passion.”

— Retired San Antonio photographer TOM CONNER, who encountered this colorful insect near his cabin in Medina County. Conner’s “Texas Alien” won second place.

Spring Rainbows by Christina Ellis

I stepped outside to enjoy the rain-cooled air, and saw an amazing double rainbow over the art studio my husband built. It seemed magical. The Hill Country is my home, and it is never boring.”

— Wimberley photographer CHRISTINA ELLIS, whose photograph, “Spring Rainbows,” was shot in Hays County during an intense April thunderstorm.

The San Marcos Mercury’s BEHOLD blog showcases the work of Texas artists and photographers. For information, send us a note.


    3 thoughts on “Behold: Diverse, dazzling beauty in the Texas Hill Country

    1. Mr. Mark Holly,

      I love the picture and it does brighten someone’s day, just beautiful thank you for sharing it’s just amazing how you captured such beauty. It’s very inspiring.

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