Project Research

I’ve been doing some research about different ethnic groups/tribes to choose for my project.
I’ve finally picked four, and from that, I will be selecting the final three since the original plan is to only create 3 illustration. If I have enough time left, then I might do a fourth one.

Kenya-Masai-Villagers-10-XL dancing-masai-women-16658631

  • The Maasai people of East Africa live in southern Kenya and northern Tanzania along the Great Rift Valley on semi-arid and arid lands. (, n.d.)
  • Livestock such as cattle, goats and sheep are the primary source of income for the Maasai. (, n.d.)
  • Most Maasai wear the color red because it symbolizes their culture and they believe it scares away lions. (, n.d.)
  • The women wear big, beaded collars.  Each color of bead represents something.  For example, red means bravery and strength, blue represents the color of the sky and rain, white shows the color of a cow’s milk, green symbolizes plants, orange and yellow mean hospitality and black shows the hardships of the people. (, n.d.)
  • The collars are made by the women themselves, and thus become more elaborate as women grow and acquire more skill. (Werlin, 2011).




  • Ladakh (meaning ‘land of the passes’) is a cold desert in the Northern Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. It is divided into the mainly Muslim Kargil district and the primarily Buddhist Leh district. (, n.d.)
  • The people of Ladakh have a rich folklore, some of which date back to the pre- Buddhist era. (, n.d.)
  •  They idealized a peaceful, united, harmonious community, free of conflict and anger. (, n.d.)
  • The Ladakhi economy has traditionally been based on small farms and on herding, but since the 1970s, tourism and other outside sources of income have also become available. (, n.d.)
  • During the 8 winter months work is minimal and festivals and celebrations are almost a continuous affair, giving them the opportunity to display Goncha, the traditional dress. (, n.d.)
  • Goncha, a voluminous robe of thick woollen cloth with a colourful cummerbund tied at the waist, is the most common Ladakhi dress; loose pyjamas, a top hat and long felt boots complete the ensemble. (, n.d.)
  • Ladakhi women wear an attractive headgear called perak, made of black lamb skin studded with semi precious turquoise stones, covering the head like a cobra’s hood and tapering to a thin tail reaching down the back. For ceremonial purposes, colourful robes in silk and brocade are worn. (, n.d.)




  • Drokpa people live in three small villages in a disputed territory between India and Pakistan. The only fertile valley of Ladakh. (, n.d.)
  • One theory is that the original Drokpas are lost tribe of the Alexander the Great. (Campbell, 2010)
  • The story goes that some of his Greek soldiers decided to hang around and put down roots and the community they founded has stayed entirely separate for more than 2000 years. (Campbell, 2010)
  • Their main sources of income are products from the well-tended vegetable gardens. (, n.d.)
  • The Drokpas are fond of music, dancing, jewellery, flowers and barley wine. Their cultural exuberance is reflected in exquisite dresses and ornaments, worn particularly at festivals such as the latesummer Bonano festival, when both men and women dance for three nights in a row. (, n.d.)
  • The women don special woollen dresses and adorn themselves with shells, beads and silver jewellery. Goatskin capes complete the traditional dress. Both men and womenwear unusual headdresses decorated with flowers, coins and seashells. (, n.d.)


rabari-7-new rabari-19-new

  • Lives in northwest India, primarily in the states of Gujarat, Punjab and Rajasthan.
  • Rabari are devout Hindus.
  • The livestock, wool, milk and leather, is their main source of income.
  • For hundreds of years, the indigenous women have practiced tattooing for decorative, religious and therapeutic purposes.
  •  Traditional patterns (Trajuva) are passed down through the generations. Nearly all surfaces of the body are tattooed.
  • Rabari dresses differ depending on the region but usually they wear bright coloured ankle-length skirts ghagra which is eight meters wide, with richly embroidered blouses and head veils which fall loosely to the ground.
  • The blouse is a short, waist reaching backless piece tied together by two ties at the back. On special occasions an embroidered apron petia is also worn tied at the waist on the right side.
  • Jewelry is worn in the Rabari community since early childhood: earrings, large necklaces, bracelets and anklets are put on little kids to protect them against the evil eye.
  • There is also a special very beautiful head adornment for girls which they wear during an important name-giving festival.
  • The pieces of jewelry which are of either of silver or gold are made by the goldsmith in the village and some are decorated with coloured glass but never with stones.

*All info from (n.d.)




  • The T’boli (pronounce “Tiboli”) people live in the southern part of the province Cotabata, Mindanao in the (Philippines.
  • Rice, cassava and yams were the most important agricultural products. Next to that, the people went hunting or fishing for additional food. (
  • The T’boli and members of other indigenous tribes like the Higaunon, still believe in spirits who live on several places in the natural environment. (
  • More than 95 percent of The T’boli people still has their animistic religion. They were hardly influenced by the spread of the Islam on the island. The Spaniards too, didn’t succeed to Christianize the T’boli during the Spanish colonial period.(
  • The T’nalak, the T’boli sacred cloth, made from abaca is the best known T’boli craft and is one of the tribes traditional textile, this cloth is exchanged during marriages. (, n.d.)
  • These unique patterns are made with centuries-old practices and passed down from generation to generation. (, n.d.)
  • This typical T’boli textile is history held in the hands of their makers and the rich cultural heritage can be seen through their creations, it shows the tribe’s collective imagination and cultural meanings.(, n.d.)

To be honest, I’m kind of nervous and excited because some of these traditional wear are just too detailed. Not to mention I also have to draw patterns, backgrounds, and also plan the layout.

Note to self: Chop chop, u ********

Reference: (n.d). Clothes – The Maasai. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from (n.d.). Maasai People, Kenya. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from

Werlin, K. (2011). The Fashion Historian: The Maasai. The Fashion Historian. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from

BEFORE THEY. (n.d.).  Ladakhi. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from,. Peaceful Societies. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from (n.d.).  Ladakh – Dress and Ornaments. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from

BEFORE THEY. (n.d.). Drokpa. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from

Campbell, E. (2010). The 7.30 Report – ABC. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from

BEFORE THEY. (n.d.). Rabari. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from,. Indigenous people on Mindanao. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from,. The T’boli Tribe. Retrieved 22 September 2015, from

Images: (n.d.). Dancing Maasai Women [Online Image]. Retrieved from (n.d.). Two Women Standing in Front of their House at Massai Village [Online Image]. Retrieved from (2010). Clad in traditional costumes and carrying bouquets, local women await for the arrival of His Holiness the Dalai Lama at Samtenling Monastery in Nubra Valley, Ladakh on 20 July 2010/ photos [Online image]. Retrieved from (n.d.). Ladakhi [Online image]. Retrieved from (n.d.). Drokpa [Online image]. Retrieved from

Retlaw Snellac Photograph. (n.d.) india – traditional dances and culture of the broka people [Online image]. Retrieved from (n.d.). Rabari [Online image]. Retrieved from

DonNJuanPhotography. (n.d.). Authentic T’boli attire and accessories [Online Image]. Retrieved from ph/2014/08/20/an-interview-with-ida-del-mundo-about-kna-the-dreamweaver-tboli-culture/

Luga, V. (n.d.). [Untitled image of T’boli women]. Retrieved from


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