#letsgoto: Kadayawan Festival - Davao City, Philippines

in portraitcontest •  10 months ago  (edited)

I am back with my #letsgoto series, where I feature places that will make you want to drop everything and book a ticket right away. Or at least add a new place to your bucket list destinations!

This is my third entry in the #letsgoto series. You can check out the first featuring CORON, Philippines, the second on Jaipur, India, and the third one on Lombok, Indonesia if you want.

This post will also serve as my first attempt to enter @portraitcontest's weekly portrait photography contest. The theme this week is "Vibrant Colors" and will be judged by @davekavanagh. I think there will be no problem finding colorful portraits on this post :)

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I had been thinking a lot about the place I wanted to make my next post about when it hit me that this series can not only be about a place but also about an event. I'm making the rules up as I go along, so bear with me on this and I promise to still make it interesting.

This time of year back home in the Philippines is very festive, especially in Davao City. Davao is a city in the southern part of the country, on the biggest island of the Philippines - Mindanao. My hometown is in South Cotabato but after I left for college, I lived in Davao City for 15 years. Every 3rd week of August, Davao holds a big celebration called the Kadayawan Festival - and it has gotten better and better over the years.

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The Kadayawan Festival is held annually in Davao City. The word Kadayawan is derived from the Davaoeno greeting "madayaw" which contains the root word "dayaw" meaning "good." It is a celebration of having a beautiful life and a bountiful harvest.

Today, Davao City celebrates not only its bountiful harvest but also its cultural heritage personified by its ancestral Lumad tribes. Davaoenos celebrate Kadayawan by having a lot of interesting activities and events throughout the city.

The most anticipated highlight of the week is the Floral Parade which showcases the beautiful flowers of Davao and the street dancing parade known as the "Indak Indak sa Kadalanan." "Indak" means "to dance" and "kadalanan" means "road."

This is definitely a must see event. During the street parade, all major city roads are blocked. The colorful parade is full of kids and adults dressed in tribal costumes dancing to the beat of ethnic music. If you are a bystander the music will make your hips sway and you'll want to join the dancers on the street!

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I remembered how early I'd go to the streets just to secure a nice spot to photograph the street dancers. As a photographer or even an aspiring one, these events will provide you with a lot of opportunity to take great photos. Ever since I started my love affair with photography, this has been one of the most awaited times of the year. I love taking photos and dancing to the beat with the crowd at the same time. I invite you to join the celebration through the photos below!

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I love the detail and the contrast of colors in this photo. There's also a sense of anticipation here, as this parade participant is waiting for her turn to dance.

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Aside from just dancing these kids are also singing as they proceed along the parade route!

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I don't know how many weeks of preparation go into learning all of the dance steps, all of which must be memorized. It must be hours and hours of practice, as dance routine lasts the whole morning!

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Definitely do not miss the participants providing the soundtrack to the entire event: the marching band.

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How cute is this little xylophone playing girl? I used to play xylophone in a marching band but I was definitely not as cute as this little one!

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As you can see most of the photos I took are more about portraiture. I am just drawn to the face, and the reaction of the individual rather than trying to capture the whole scene from a distance.

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Plus, Kids are my favorite subjects! You can't get shots like this from afar!

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Children will give you the most sincere facial expressions, like the smile of this girl. It is so contagious and fits perfectly with the festivities.

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Most people use a wide angle or telephoto lens during this type of event. I like to shoot with my 50mm, 85mm and 35mm prime lenses. Because I'm focused on portraiture, this helps with the depth of field and provides a nice blurry background as demonstrated in the photo below.

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I hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I enjoyed sharing it. The Philippines has a lot of festivals all year round, but if you are planning to visit Davao City, a great time to go is in August during Kadayawan Festival. I guarantee you that you will not only enjoy the festival but also end up eating a lot of great food! Especially fruit because they are all so cheap at this time of the year, especially if you have developed a love for durian (@eoj still isn't there yet, but I'm working on him!). Despite Mindanao's reputation, Davao is one of the safest cities in the world and the people are warm and welcoming, like the girl in the photo below.

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<3 @suitcasemaa

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Your photos are absolutely stunning @suitcasemama Super creative captures 😍😍

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Thanks so much @jessicaoutside, i loved your latest on ontario too! my sister is in bc, but maybe will have to do ontario soon too <3

Your photos are really great :( so sad I can't book a flight right away since the third week of August falls on a midterm week. But definitely, It will be in my bucketlist and soon, I'll visit Davao!

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Thanks @pjcorts, I hope you get to davao during a less busy year, maybe 2019? Take your camera, youll love to see kadayawan!

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Soon!!!

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great! let me know if you need any help!
<3 @suitcasemama

Gorgeous photos, you do a beautiful job of capturing the people. All the color is beautiful!

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thank you @sjarvie! theres so much color during kadayawan you can just point and click and get a great shot! I see you're in Arizona, that's my favorite state in the US!

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Thank you so much @travelfeed!

Sooo much color!!

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Haha, you're right! You may have to wear sunglasses when you attend this event! 😎

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Thanks @photocircle!

Hello! I have just featured one of your images that you recently submitted to my 7 World´s Continents Photo Challenge in today´s color challenge. Feel free to attend the post to interact with other users through answering some of the comments. Thank you. Have a great day. Tomas

7 World’s Continents Photo Challenge – Asian Sunday week #46 – winner announcement!

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oh, great, thank you Tomas! although i think you gave me the wrong link - ill go by your blog and stop by the red color challenge post instead ;)

i really appreciate the support and i'm glad you like the portraits! i knew you normally feature landscapes, but the kadayawan festival is so beautiful i just had to share :)

<3 @suitcasemama

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Ooops, sorry about that! I do love what you do on Steemit and I am very glad when I can appreciate you from time to time. Thanks a million!

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haha, no problem, and thank you so much for the support! im very thankful for it especially since the other contributors to your contest are so talented! thank you @czechglobalhosts and come visit us in asia soon! <3 @suitcasemama

Hello @suitcasemama,

Congrats! Your outstanding work is featured on the Photocircle Top 10 Contributors for the category "People & Lifestyle".
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thank you so much for the support @photocircle! i visited the post and congratulated everyone :)
<3 @suitcasemama


This post was shared in the Curation Collective Discord community for curators, and upvoted and resteemed by the @c-squared community account after manual review.
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thanks so much for the support @c-squared, im glad you liked the post!

Some very amazing and colorful portraits here! Thank you for giving us some information on your lenses, I am happy to pick up tips while I admire your technique!

You were right, this is going on the bucket list ;p

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thank you so much @ecoinstant! i'm glad this is on the list now, please let me know if you end up going, i will be very happy to help in any way i can! make sure you try to go in august ;)
<3 @suitcasemama

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Fantastic! This is the wonderful level of connection that I have felt on steem :)

If you had to pick, for someone who has never left 'the americas', would you start in the Philippines or in Indonesia? I have always wanted to visit an archipelago nation where every stop is a wonderfully different experience!

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Hmm, good question! Well, im from Philippines, so i might be cheating, but i think it's a great first trip! 7000 islands so lots to choose from and you won't have trouble communicating with people, most people speak great English! We love Indonesia too though, i wonder what @eoj thinks about this!? He lived there for a year. The food is probably better in Indonesia than I PH! Haha!

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Oh really?!

Yes I was leaning towards Philippines because we speak both english and spanish! Those are the top two languages there right?

Is the diet a lot of seafood because of all the sea?

Thanks for your great answers, I feel like I'm already planning in my head!

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yes! @eoj speaks spanish and can understand a bit of my language, tagalog, but almost everyone you will meet speaks english :) there is GREAT seafood in the Philippines! near where im from, general santos city, it known to have the best tuna!

feel free to ask any more questions or tell me what you both might be looking for! and here, check out one of my top recommendations in a different part of the country, Coron, i did a blog on it recently: https://steemit.com/travelfeed/@suitcasemama/letsgoto-coron-philippines

be careful, youll want to go there right now after reading it!!! :)

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Oh wow, I know what you mean, I am nervous to click that link because I might be swept off my feet and carried off to the airport!

I like the idea of your series, the #letsgoto where we want to drop everything and go today! That is perhaps not an available reality for all, but it is a very exciting bar to see set and great emotions to have while reading your travel article!

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So, I think Philippines is a great choice! I love Indonesia as well, and the people are very friendly, but depending on where you go, you may find some people that don't speak English. In Philippines, you won't have any problems. Let us know when you go, we'd be happy to assist and help you find what you're looking for!

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Glad its on the map, thanks @steemitworldmap!

oh my gosh @suitcasemama, these photos are so beautiful!! And that little xylophone playing girl!! so cute. You have a gift for capturing faces; they all seem to tell a story. I'd love to see that festival; the mirage of colors are really extraordinary.

As I was reading this, I was thinking to submit it to c-squared, but I see they already payed you a visit :)

EDIT: I got so caught up in your post that I forgot to tell you that I found it because @jessicaoutside featured you in her Pay It Forward entry and I'm one of the lucky judges who gets to see all the awesome posts that get featured :) Feel free to join us next week with an entry of your own!

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youre so nice, thank you @lynncolyle1! i love that cute xylophone girl too! I was her a long time ago, haha!

wow, thanks to @jessicaoutside! shes a great photographer, im honored! im not sure how it all works, can i feature her back!? she recently had a few posts on canada that were beautiful!!

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Yes you sure can! That would be such a nice gesture too :) If you have a look at the post all the "rules" are there, but it's pretty straightforward. It just started yesterday for this week, so you could totally get in on it if you had the time to do a post this week still. If not, no worries, because it is a weekly contest :)

Thanks for your interest @suitcasemama :)

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oh okay, thanks @lynncoyle1, ill check it out!

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Glad to hear it @suitcasemama 😅

Such beautiful, colorful photos! I especially like the one with the fan held down by her side.
I found your blog from @jessicaoutside's post on PayItForward. :-)

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Thank you @bananamemos! I love that shot too, i took it during a break in the action right before the dancer was about to go do her dance :) and thanks again to @jessicaoutside, thats so nice of her!!

So much color! You have taken some great photos, thank you for sharing them! Found your post thanks to @jessicaoutside who featured you in her entry post to the Pay It Forward Curation Contest

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thank you @pifc and big thanks to @jessicaoutside!!!!

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Your photos are so unbelievably good!!!!!!!! They should be published in National Geographic. I love seeing how much culture there is in the Philippines!

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wow, national geographic, that would be a dream come true! thank you so much @nomadicsoul!! yes, there are so many tribes and each has a bit different culture and dress and traditions, lots of events and celebrations in PH!

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As a newbie, I have been checking on #introduceyourself blogs to also welcome other newbies as I was welcomed when I first got into Steemit. That is where I saw your husband @eoj's self introduction and got to know that his wife is a Filipina. I was not expecting to come across your username through the #payitforward curation contest but here we are. That is because @jessicaoutside has featured your blog here: Pay it forward curation contest.

I know "dayaw" to mean "praise" in Ilocano so I guess it will still be the same for Kadayawan to mean praising the Almighty for beautiful life and bountiful harvest. 😊

Kadayawan is one of the Philippine festivities that I long to personally witness but timing has been elusive. I wish to witness it soon. At least for now, you have given here a glimpse of the very colorful festival. Thank you for featuring Philippine cultures!

I am not sure if you are aware of this: The Spirit of Communal Unity - "Bayanihan", 43rd Philippines' Curation Updates. Just in case not yet, maybe you would want to use their tags #philippines or #pilipinas for Tagalog blogs so they will find your post. Who knows, they might pick your blog. 😊

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Hi @macoolette! Youre welcome, Im happy to share and give people a glimpse of what is expected to see in Kadayawan, afterall it is really fun, hope you can come and witness it if not this year then the next. Thank you for the tip on the tags, really appreciate it. Yey!

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Hopefully, next year...

You're welcome. 😊

What a stunning, colourful set of photographs @suitcasemama. It looks like a wonderful festival and I can see why you would recommend it.

I love your portraits especially. 😊

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Thank you very much @gillianpearce, Its really lively and colorful. The people are very gracious smiling for the camera too!

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Thank you @steemitboard :)

Hi @suitcasemama as you know @jessicaoutside featured you in @pifc wk 19 contest.

Very nice post and incredible pictures. I really enjoy learning about different cultures and how the celebrate different things. It is nice to know some areas still celebrate for the upcoming harvest. The event looks like it would be amazing to attend.

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thanks so much @tryskele, thank you for the kind words! im glad you enjoyed the post and i hope you can one day make it to the philippines to attend its a super fun event!

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You are so welcome @suitcasemama. I will. It may take me longer than I want, but I will travel. I keep Steemit going. I am going to have a world of people to meet and visit.