In my time

“Some people, no matter how old they get, never lose their beauty – they merely move it from their faces into their hearts.” ~Martin Buxbaum

Old Bagobos in the highlands of Tudaya, Davao del Sur

Old bagobo woman by Jojie Alcantara

Old bagobo woman | Jojie Alcantara

I met these people separately in the highlands of Kapatagan, Davao del Sur.  Lola (our dialect for grandma, or respectful term for old woman) is an old Bagobo tribeswoman whose amiable character and sweet smile makes you want to hug her all the time. She agreed to pose for me inside her small and simple house.

Old Bagobo man by Jojie Alcantara

Old Bagobo man | Jojie Alcantara

Lolo is an old mestizo I discovered sitting outside his home with a cane. He lives near a school.  He has this quiet air of authority and dignity as he watched me approached him cautiously. Only then did he smile when I asked for a photo.

Etched on their faces are tales of youth lived well and beautifully.  Such is the human spirit of growing old.  Time grows gentle with them as they become old, wise and wistful.

Lines of character

Shy Matigsalog woman by Jojie Alcantara

Shy Matigsalog woman by Jojie Alcantara

“Age should not have its face lifted, but it should rather teach the world to admire wrinkles as the etchings of experience and the firm line of character.” ~ Clarence Day

Lumad portrait in black and white: Matigsalogs of Marilog District, Davao

LUMAD is a term for a group of indigenous peoples of the southern Philippines. It is a Cebuano term meaning “native” or “indigenous”, or a collective identity of the non-Islamized indigenous peoples of Mindanao.

The peace-loving Ata Matigsalog (or Matigsalug) is a tribal group found in the hinterlands of Bukidnon and the mountain districts of Davao City. This tribal woman was laughing uncontrollably during our shoot. I waited for her to warm up to me and lose her shyness.  Some portraits are better viewed in black and white, especially in emphasizing character lines and and making use of drama.  But you be the judge. :-)

Here is my colored version

Shy Matigsalog woman by Jojie Alcantara

Shy Matigsalog woman by Jojie Alcantara