Beauty from Ashes: A Visual Diary of Mt Pinatubo

Last weekend, a friend and I journeyed to one of the Philippines’ most renowned crater lakes: Mt Pinatubo.

Erupting in 1991, it’s considered to be the second largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century killing 800+ people and displacing thousands more. Its effects on the environment were also felt on a global scale, causing a temperature drop and further deterioration of the ozone layer.

More than two decades later, I find myself hiking its very slopes… 

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Mt Pinatubo
I stood on the inside of the volcanic crater, mind-blown to think that all the devastation happened just a number of months before I was born.

Imagining that before I could enjoy this majestic beauty; dust, ash, and smoke once filled the air that made it dark as night in the daytime. And here, the towering cliffs of rock emerged from what is now a calm and peaceful lake.

Mt Pinatubo

Mt Pinatubo

Mt Pinatubo

When at once the process and outcome was immensely frightening, and now awe-inspiring.

It makes me think of the paradoxical attributes of God — strength, power, and might; yet gentle and caring, and kind. He who is Love Himself, but also merciful and just. He who makes beautiful things out of the dust, and walks with us through the valley and darkness, then clothes us in righteousness and light. The God who’s in the business of redemption; taking our brokenness and exchanging our ashes for beauty… and nothing more makes me fall on my knees faster in worship. ❤

Mt Pinatubo


All photos shot with iPod Touch 5 + post-processed with VSCO

Hannah is a visual creative and aspiring digital nomad based in Manila. When she's not pushing pixels, she can be found cuddling with her cat, chilling in cafés, adventuring with her amigas, or finding her next flight out. She enjoys tea lattes and making alliterations.

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