This is home. This is Nebraska. The American west. The last frontier.

Growing up under a big red sky, I developed my passion for storytelling. Nebraska inspired me to be creative, allowing me to focus on the emotion, the landscape and the people. With more than 30 years working in visual arts and clients across the globe, my childhood in Nebraska still remains paramount in shaping my style and the unique way I approach projects. Nebraska is a place of cowboys and poets, buffalo and meadowlarks. It’s a tapestry of land harnessed to be bountiful. A place that helps feed the world.

In the last year and a half, my team at Straw Hat Visuals and I have spent a significant amount of time in Nebraska, talking to people and capturing their stories. The product of that has been the Nebraska Project. A comprehensive website about people, places and the stories they tell. It’s my own thank you to the state that raised me.

There are so many wonderful things about Nebraska that I want to show to the world. Creating intimate video portraits of the state is one way I want to do that. I am also hosting a photography workshop in Nebraska this October.

It’s an American place. Big, strong, solid and reliable. There is great beauty in that. Untapped reservoirs of goodness. When you spend your entire life leaning into a hard wind, you learn a different kind of serenity. Nebraskans are open and friendly, always ready to extend a helping hand. I have yet to meet a stranger in the state.

This video was completed last fall. One of many videos I hope to create to help Nebraska celebrate it’s 150th birthday next spring. But this one is personal. This is My Nebraska.

My Nebraska from Straw Hat Visuals on Vimeo.

For more information about Bill and Straw Hat Visuals, please follow them on instagram @billfrakes and @lheald86 and visit their websites:,,

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