The Austin Photo Book blog highlights why people love Austin by talking about Austin attractions and events from a local point of view.

The pictures on this blog are from the book Austin, Texas: A Photographic Portrait, or taken by the photographer of the book, Peter Tsai.

The book is on sale today both online and in stores. Buy a copy by clicking on this image or by visiting your local Austin bookstore!

Hello Austinites!

After the long, hot and harsh Austin summer that broke the record for the number of 100 degree days, it’s good to know that fall is just around the corner. To celebrate, the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center in south Austin is hosting their annual Fall Plant Sale where they will sell plants from “nearly 300 species of hardy Texas natives bred to deal with our Central Texas climate” – like the extreme summer we just went through!

In addition to selling plants, the festival will highlight several books that celebrate Austin and Texas. As part of the the Wildflower Center’s Fall Plant Sale the photographer and writer of “Austin, Texas: A Photographic Portrait” Peter Tsai and Tiffany Hamburger will be signing their book from 1-4 PM pm on Sunday, October 16th, 2011.

Come out to meet the creators of the Austin Photo book! The Wildflower Center will have plenty of copies in the book store, so you can buy a copy there.

For more information about the event, go to

Two years in the making, the Austin photography book entitled “Austin, Texas: A Photographic Portrait” is on sale now!

While you can read about this 128 page, hardback Austin coffee table book on the About page on this blog, we all know a picture is worth a thousand words.

So, I put together this hands-on video that gives a better feel for what you can expect from the book.

As the video shows, the book is packed full of colorful photos and insightful captions for over 100 landmarks around Austin. Whether you are new to Austin or have lived here your entire life, there’s something for you in its pages.

As I mentioned in the video, you can buy the book online at and

We Austinites all like to “Keep Austin Weird” as well – BookPeople has the book but it’s not in their computer system yet. When you go into the store, you will have to search the Texana/Texas History section manually. When I went in, it was on the far shelf, next to the Texas Nature section next to “Trillin on Texas”. If you head to Barnes and Noble, my book will be in the Texas section (although it’s cheaper to buy online at

If you represent a hotel or corporation that wants to buy at least 5 books, please use the following form to inquire about a bulk order discount.

You can also order individual prints or licence photos from the book at on the photo prints page.

In closing, I would like to thank you to all of the Austinites around town that helped in the making this book about our awesome city! I could not have finished this multi-year project without you.

To stay in touch, please subscribe to this blog for more cool info about Austin and possibly future events related to the book. You can also find me on Twitter @AustinPhotoBook and @supertsai.

Tell all of your friends! Thanks a million!

“Keep Austin Weird” has become a rallying cry that has come to symbolize maintaining the unique (and non cookie cutter) character of the city by supporting local businesses, culture, and the arts. One of our favorite “weird” things about Austin is the numerous iconic murals around town that make the Austin a cool place to live.

Austin’s decorative murals, shown here using photos from the book Austin, Texas: A Photographic Portrait, make a great backdrop for a photo and will bring a smile to your face whether you are visiting Austin for the first time (maybe you are here for SXSW 2011 or Austin City Limits) or if you are an Austinite down to your core.

Austintatious Mural - Drag Guadalupe UT
Austintatious Mural

If you only have time to check out one mural in Austin, the Austintatious Mural in the Renaissance Market is the one to see. Painted by 3 friends known as the Austintatious Artists, this massive mural comically depicts both the landmarks of downtown Austin on one side of the square, and on the other, the entire state of Texas. At Renaissance Market you can buy all sorts of hand crafts and jewelry, and with the student oriented Drag shopping strip around it and the Univerity of Texas directly across from it, there’s plenty to do when visiting this mural.

Murals on Austin Drag by Fredrico Archuleta AKA "Fe De Rico"
The Drag Murals at 24th and Guadalupe – Tower Records \ Intellectual Property \ Wells Fargo Building

Just 1 block over from the Austintatious Mural, the corner of 24th and Guadalupe is home to 2 beautiful murals, one gigantic movie themed mural on the old Intellectual Property / Tower Records building and a dreamlike warped mural on the side of the Wells Fargo Bank (former GAP building). At the street level of the old Tower Records building you will find many stencil based pieces featuring famous rock stars by the prolific Austin artist Federico Archuleta.

Austin frog mural hi how are you? - Guadalupe Drag
Hi How Are You? Frog Mural

The iconic Hi How are You? Frog might as well be the poster child for Austin weirdness. Painted in 1993 by musician Daniel Johnston, the Frog has been a fixture on the Drag ever since, surviving building remodels and the occasional prankster vandalism. The Frog has spawned an entire industry around it – you can buy a T-shirt with the picture of the frog at Storyville on South Congress and the iconic amphibious street art has even inspired an iPhone game it featuring music by Daniel Johnston.
Austin Postcard Mural

Located on the side of the Roadhouse Relics building on South 1st street and Annie, this iconic, vintage looking Austin mural is a great tourist photo opp or an engagement photo shoot favorite. Once you’re done taking a few snapshots here, head over to the nearby Trailer Park Eatery, where you can enjoy a Torchy’s taco or two. The South First neighborhoods around the mural are also great to take a stroll around.

South Austin Music Mural Shop Lamar Blvd Texas
South Austin Music

Another mural depicting Austin music legends on the side of the South Austin Music building on South Lamar. Aaron Sacco created this full wall mural to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Austin institution, the South Austin Music store. The wall features over 30 local Austin musicians and spans 40 feet long. Artists highlighted on the mural include: Alejandro Escoveda, Patrice Pike, Guy Forsyth, Kevin Fowler, Papa Mali, and more. To see more of Aaron Sacco’s work, go to

Rhapsody - East Austin Mosaic Jazz Mural
Rhapsody Mosaic Mural

Rhapsody, the huge, colorful mosaic mural in East Austin by artist John Yancey is on the southwest corner of East 11th Street and Waller. Yancey, an associate chairman and professor of art at the University of Texas, designed the mural to reflect East Austin’s rich African American history.

6th street live music capital of the world mural - Downtown Austin
Live Music Capital of the World Mural on 6th Street

On 6th street near San Jacinto, this mural seemingly popped out of nowhere one day in 2009. It covers up the site of the burned down Black Cat Lounge and is a welcome addition to 6th street and the music scene it gives a home to, that earned Austin the title of “Live Music Capital of the World”. Austin music legends featured in the mural include: Stevie Ray Vaughan, Willie Nelson, Janis Joplin, Townes Van Zandt, and Roky Erickson.

Austin Tesoros Trading Company Mother Mar
South Congress Murals – Tesoros

South Congress is come to numerous murals and graffiti pieces, some done by notable artists like Shepard Fairey, who designed the Obama “Hope” poster. You can find many murals on the walls of stores and in back alleys (the Fairey piece is behind Home Slice). The particular mural is by Fredrico Archuleta and features the same mural of Mary, mother of Jesus that appeared on the Drag – it’s located across from Guero’s on South Congress and Elizabeth.

george washington carver library mural - East Austin Texas
George Washington Carver Library and Museum

This colorful and huge mural entitled “Sesquicentennial” was created by John Fisher. It depicts the hardships of slaves during middle passage and is located at the George Washington Carver Center in East Austin at Angelina St and Rosewood Ave. Originally created in 1986, the mural was restored last in 1999.

SXSWi 2011 and MOO Cards for Austin Photo Book

SXSWi 2011 at the Austin Convention Center

South by Southwest 2011 is fast approaching and an estimated 36,000 visitors will soon descend on Austin for the SXSW interactive, music and film conferences. During SXSW, the movers and shakers in their respective industries come to Austin to learn about new industry trends, discover new ideas and talent, and network with people from all around the world.

Speaking of networking, Peter Tsai, the photographer of Austin, Texas: A Photographic Portrait will be at SXSWi this year! If you are attending SXSWi 2011, make sure to follow him on Twitter at @AustinPhotoBook or at his personal account at @supertsai.

MOO Photo Business Cards
Give him a shout! If you do meet up with him, he’ll give you one of his awesome MOO business cards, which happen to feature one of 25 photos from Austin, Texas: A Photographic Portrait. If you want to learn more about MOO cards, you can find them on Twitter at @overheardatmoo

Don’t have a badge for SXSW this year? No worries – there’s many ways to participate in the SXSW even without a badge. Websites like Republic of Austin and SXSW Free Noms will show you where to get your party on for free! Why are there so many free parties in Austin during SXSW? I’m not sure, but it’s just one more reason why Austin is an awesome place to live.