Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Lisa Tandugon: Bohol's Catwalk Queen

This is a long overdue feature for one of Bohol’s most enduring models

She is well- loved and respected in the modeling industry not only because of her signature “Maria Lisa” catwalk but also because of her warmth, sincerity and humility

She was a shy and gawky girl when I first met her in 1999. She was a candidate for that year’s Miss Tagbilaran Pageant and I was the emcee. 

It was her very first pageant experience but she made a dent by winning the Best in Evening Gown award and placing as 2nd Runner Up to Marime Marapao

A few days after the pageant, she confessed that it was her nerves and shyness that got in the way and she swore that she would never ever join another beauty pageant

Maria Lisa in her  Miss Tagbilaran 1999 official photo


Two years later, my high school classmate and one of Bohol’s most talented designers, Maximiel Tallo, announced in the local papers that he was organizing a local modeling contest that would select Bohol’s bets for the nationwide search for the newly- launched Best Model of the World- Philippines Competition.

I told Maxi to get Lisa as a candidate because she had the looks, the figure and the height. Getting Lisa to join wasn’t easy but after a week of persuasion and pep talk, she finally said yes and as they always say, the rest is history

Lisa was selected as Bohol’s representative for the Visayas- wide Best Model of the World- Philippines regional finals and competed with some of the most stunning and very experienced top models of Cebu City and other key Visayan cities.

I remember telling her not to expect too much but to give it her best, make new friends and to enjoy the whole experience


During the Visayas regional finals of the modeling search and in a Cinderella- like fairy tale and against all odds and despite the lack of modeling experience and connections, our very own Lisa Tandugon of Lindaville Subdivision, Tagbilaran City was selected by the judges and the Robbie Carmona, the Philippine franchise holder for Best Model of the World national search!

She competed later that year in Manila for the right to represent the country in the Best Model of the World Model Search. She gave it her best shot and she made it all the way to the Top Ten. 

She may not have won in Manila but the experience and the exposure did open a lot of doors for Lisa.

She has done countless runway shows and has modeled for some of the country’s top fashion designers

For the past few years, she has reigned as the queen of the catwalk in Bohol. 

In between, she is also kept busy with her own business venture that takes advantage of her entrepreneurial skills and her connection of friends


Gowns                                     :Maximiel Tallo
Photos                                     :Michael Yu
Concept and Styling                : Joseph Ven Dumadag and Maximiel Tallo
Locale                                      : Maribojoc and Loon in Bohol Province

For Lisa, Life is Like a Big Runway Fashion Show. 

You just sway then do your snap and turn. If you trip or you fall, just stand up as if nothing happened, smile and continue your walk

Thanks for the friendship Lisa!

Extra Special Blog Feature

Part 1: The Tragic Story of Amparo Munoz

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