Faces of Bougainville: Siblings

Jessie T. Ponce Photography

“Siblings” / Autonomous Region of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea / December 2012

These kids live with their mother in the bush near the center of Bougainville Island but I can see traces of outside influence in the photo.  Aside from “The Little Mermaid” print on the girl’s blouse, the boy’s hand mimics that of a cowboy shooting from the hip — a sign that popular western movie characters have influenced even the remote islands of the Pacific.  Also, there is some kind of strength and sharpness in their eyes and facial expressions — something that I don’t often see in kids of their age.  What looks like a shadow that further sharpened the girls eye’s is quite mysterious to me.  It was not so pronounced and, in fact, I did not notice it while taking this photo.