I remember I would take pictures of people in private and public events like parties, weddings, conventions and other gatherings in Hotel Enrico, Bayside Club, Nile Club and the Manila Hotel.
My father would develop the negatives in the darkroom even when his eyes were already failing, my mother would print the photographs. My younger sister Winnita and brother Amelito would help me sell photographs at P2 pesos a copy. This was how the Velarde Studio supported the whole family. There were days that I felt we had so much and days that I felt we had nothing. I embraced this duality early in life.
I learned that the ability to adjust with the times and to one’s current circumstances is a powerful lever that helps maintain a sense of balance and sanity; it is also crucial to achieving success in whatever endeavor.
Although success is incremental, which means it evolves over time; it is also automatic, which means it ought to happen.
I shall explain this insight in the podcasts. This chapter in my life was the most critical; it could have caused irreparable psychological damage. Just surviving from it was a success. My childhood days had the most impact on where I am now.