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Decoding the Meaning Behind the Creative Photos of a Filipino Local Traveler

Meet Jerob, a Filipino traveler who truly enjoys the place he used to visit here in the Philippines – with creativity in mind. Jerob was a former workmate of mine and I got really fascinated with the photos he’s sharing on his social media page. There is something different in there, something even beyond creativity. I did not interview Jerob about his photos except that I only asked his permission that I will create a blog post related to some of them. Great! He allowed me. So in this post, let me try to decode the meaning behind each one of Jerob’s impressive photos.


Over the Top of "I LOVE ABRA"
In this photo, obviously, he’s into “planking” and interestingly, he did it on top of the “I love ABRA” signage. Well, planking became famous here in the Philippines just a few years back. It is actually an exercise and at the same time a self-test for mental toughness. That idea if you can endure to hold your position for a long time and to also do it in a public place is a form of creative communication. Yes, it is grabbing the attention of the public and make them think as well why that person is doing it or what is he trying to imply.

Jerob Planking at "I Love Abra" Sign

But Jerob’s planking is just the beginning of this interesting story of creativity. In these next photos, you will see him and his friends touring the Abra province, another monumental place in the Philippines. The reason behind, here they are.


A Truck Adventure Ride
In this amazing photo, travelers ride a truck going to a remote place in Bangued, Abra. Somewhere in between their point of origin and destination, the truck crews decided to chain the wheels. Abra is somewhat a mountainous province and to reach towns or barangays here, it needs a powerful engine and good-traction wheels.




Breathtaking Kaparkan Falls
This is Jerob and his friends at Kaparkan Falls in Kaparkan, Lagayan, Abra. What else can I say here. To be in this place is truly worth the time, money, and effort. Quite unbelievable, but this water paradise does exist in the country. Why not stare for a couple of minutes in this amazing wonder of Abra.

Kaparkan Falls in Kaparkan, Lagayan, Abra

Have you seen the code to decode?

Now here is Jerob in his yoga pose. Indeed, what a relaxing place where you can connect your soul to the calmness of nature. Sound of the waterfalls, chirping birds, trees swaying against the wind; serenity is what it brings to the mind and body. We got your message on this one Jerob! Yes, we feel jealous because we’re not there. Lol!



The Oldest Gallery of Books
Alright, here’s another interesting site in Abra – the Gabriela Cariño Silang Gallery of Fine Arts. Who’s Gabriela Silang? She’s one of the few female national heroes who led the revolution against the Spaniards during the 1700’s. She and her husband, Diego Silang, defended the Ilocanos against tyranny and oppression. Inside this museum, which is owned by the Cariño family, is where you can find artwork collections including paintings, furniture, ceramics, and books. Here are some of Jerob and his friends’ creative shots inside this historic museum of Abra.



In this one, we can say that Jerob is trying to mimic the gesture or routine of the revolutionary leaders during the Spanish era. Maybe write a letter for the Ilocano Katipuneros or read the latest news coming from co-leaders in the mainland Luzon; those are the typical roles of the revolutionary leaders during that time. Cool pose, anyway. Isn’t it?


Then here’s another pose of Jerob on which the background truly deserves that hand sign. Magnificent! Bingo! Bravo! These are brilliant paintings some of which were made by Filipino hands, and yes, they are here in Abra! If you’re an art collector or painting lover, these masterpieces could have been worth thousands of dollars for you. For the simple eyes like mine, seeing these means priceless happiness and endless appreciation. How beautiful that Jerob was able to share this to us.



Up Close and Personal Encounter with the "Mambabatok"
Perhaps, the highlight of Jerob's travel to Abra (and nearby province of Kalinga) is the one-of-a-kind experience he has in this photo.

Jerob Getting Tattoos from Whang-od Oggay

Meet Whang-od Oggay (some call her Apo Fang-od), Philippines' oldest “Mambabatok” or tribal tattoo artist of the Kalinga ethnic group. She’s legendary and she’s from the Philippines. You can find a lot of articles about her these days. Many local and foreign travelers choose to visit her to get their body inked with tribal tattoo designs. Visible in this photo of Jerob and Apo Fang-od is that Fang-od is into the old-fashioned way of tattooing. While Fang-od is facing against the lens here, no doubt Jerob made it to the mountains of Buscalan, Tinglayan, Kalinga, Philippines and there she met the living legend Mambabatok. This photo makes us Filipinos proud, maybe more than that of Jerob’s proudness for getting inked by Fang-od.


More Codes to Decode
Here are some more of Jerob's creative photos and I am leaving it up to you to decode the meaning behind each of them.

Waiting at the Train Station

Sitting Near a Road Tunnel in Abra

Holding a White Umbrella Near the Beach

I would like to thank Jerob for giving me the opportunity to write a blog for his work of arts. What is really commendable about these photo shots is that they were all taken right here in the Philippines. That advocacy to promote your own country, despite of the odds we Filipinos are experiencing here, is something only a few of us can do these days. I may not be able to decode the exact meaning of the photos, but from my personal point of view, Philippines is truly a beautiful, amazing nation. This blog just proved it once again.

Credits: Photos of Abra and other creative photos I shared in this post are courtesy of my friend Jerob Camerino and his friends Yeng Corral and Blou de Luna Rivera as well as the GalaPH team. He and his friends traveled to Abra this 2017. You can check out more photos of Jerob on his Instagram page @jrcameri_knows as well as on his Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/jerobino.



You may also want to read:

Interesting Facts from the Historic Province of the Ilocanos - Ilocos Norte, the Philippines

Cebu City - A Must-Visit Place in the Philippines Known as the “Queen City of the South”

Lipa City, Sta. Rosa City and Cubao - Three Signs of Hope for a Good Philippine Nation

Exploring the Beauty of a City in Progress - Naga City, Bicol, Philippines


About this Post
This post about Jerob's travel to Abra is just one of the many interesting and mind-awakening posts about the beautiful Philippines. The intention is not only to promote the country, but also to tell everyone that Philippines is a nation experiencing political, social, environmental, and cultural issues.

You will notice that in every post, the issues are brought up and at the same time solutions are being provided or suggested. If you want to know the fine details of how Filipinos live their lives here, this is a great blog site to begin with. Project Pilipinas is Noriel Panganiban's personal campaign for changing everything bad into good in the Philippines. If you have the same advocacy, please share his posts.

What do you think about Jerob's photos? For comments and suggestions, please write them in the comment section below.

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