When I came to New York, I had $60 in my pocket and three suitcases to my name. I slept on the toilet at Port Authority with my feet up so no one would see me. After a few weeks, I found a job as a factory seamstress in Brooklyn.
I’ve been creating art ever since I was a child. I spent years under my mother’s piano sketching my father and reading music books. Growing up in my country, art wasn’t considered a necessity, so when it came time for college, my mother pushed me to become a doctor.
When I first started cutting hair, I was averaging about 80 customers a day from my house in Woodside. Back then I was a household name. Everyone was talking about the Filipino kid that opened up a shop at his mom’s basement.