From The Digital Baul Part 2: Black And White Conversions

These were edited late last year when I was trying out digital conversion from colored RAW files to black and white. I’m not that happy with the boat photos yet; I’ll try to work on them again when I have a bit of time to spare. 🙂

Detail, Vakul Weaving. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Detail, Vakul Weaving. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Ivatan House, Batanes.

Ivatan House, Batanes. Facade of a traditional Ivatan house.

Sabtang Plaza Entry, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Sabtang Plaza Entry, Sabtang Island, Batanes. The School of Fisheries in Sabtang offers very basic, dorm-style accommodations for very reasonable rates. Bring your own food as there are very limited options for purchasing food on the island.

Sabtang Port, Batanes.

Sabtang Port, Batanes. This was the view from our dorm room at the School of Fisheries on an overcast day.

Sabtang Port, Batanes.

Sabtang Port, Batanes. Taken just before boarding the faluwa back to Batan Island on an overcast and drizzly day.

Sabtang Port, Batanes.

Sabtang Port, Batanes. Taken just before boarding the faluwa back to Batan Island. Colored photo for comparison.

From The Digital Baul, Part 1: Vakul Weaving

My computer has been rather rudely reminding me that I need to do some maintenance and clean up; it’s been freezing up and refusing to budge if I have more than a few sites and apps open, so I’ve been digging through my digital baul* weeding out old files that I no longer need. I found a stash of photos from way back when Multiply was still a thing (remember them?), and I’m thinking of uploading them here to back them up. I’ll have to get permission from some of the people in the shots, though, so it’s going to take a while.

For now, I’ll leave you with this collection of vakul weaving photos, still from the Batanes collection. The vakul is a traditional headdress that the Ivatan people wear to work in the fields. The vakul is sturdy enough to keep them dry during the rainy season, and comfortable enough to keep them cool in the summer. It takes the weavers up to a week to make a single vakul, depending on its size.

*Baul is the Filipino word for a chest in which to keep one’s things.

Vakul Weavers, Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Vakul Weavers, Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes. It takes the weavers an entire week to create a vakul, a traditional Ivatan headdress meant to protect the wearer from the elements.

Detail, Vakul weaving. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Detail, Vakul weaving. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Vakul Weaver. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Vakul Weaver. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Vakul Weaver. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Vakul Weaver. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Detail, Vakul weaving. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Detail, Vakul Weaving. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes. The weavers use their feet to keep the vakul stable as it grows longer.

Detail, Vakul Weaving. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Detail, Vakul Weaving. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes. The weavers rub two strands of string on their thighs to combine them and make them stronger. It’s painful and painstaking work akin to waxing the same spot on your thigh over and over again. Every. Single. Day.

Unfinished Vakul. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

Unfinished Vakul. Chavayan, Sabtang Island, Batanes.

There are no wrong turnings

Sabtang Road, Batanes

On the road at Sabtang Island, Batanes.

“There are no wrong turnings. Only paths we had not known we were meant to walk.”
― Guy Gavriel KayTigana