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Amazing! Local quadriplegic artist paints with his mouth

by Maggie O'Mara

Bio | Email | Follow: @maggiektvb7


Posted on December 17, 2009 at 7:43 AM

Updated Tuesday, Oct 29 at 9:07 PM

Hernan "Non" Reyes was injured in a car accident in 1992 that left him paralyzed from his shoulders down. When this happened, he had no idea what his new life would be like. He battled depression, but somehow found the strength to gain a positive attitude. He now looks at his glass as half full, not half empty! Something we should all be doing...

After the accident, Non discovered he had talent in art. With a brush or pencil held in his mouth, he expresses himself in his amazing drawings and paintings. Now, Non uses his "mouth art" as a tool to help inspire others. Just take a look at what he can do!

A couple of years ago, I had the incredible opportunity to meet Non - and I actually had the chance to see him draw and paint using his mouth. He was such an inspiration to me, and still is to this day. I wanted to share his work with you. Keep in mind, he created this art with a paintbrush and his mouth... WOW.

"When I was injured in 1992, we were told I had little chance to make it. After some rehab in California, I was told I'd be dependent on a vent and I'd never breathe on my own. But, fortunately, the course my life has taken hasn't been what was predicted.

At times along this journey, I've noticed that people will glance at me and sometimes stare; certainly, not being rude but just wondering about my injury or feeling bad for my situation. I think the perception is that, because you're in a wheelchair, you're supposed to be sad or depressed.

Sometimes, I'll be at the mall or at the grocery store. Then someone will glance and give me a solemn diluted smile. Then, I WINK at them. It always elicits such a warm response and hopefully makes people wonder, "What is he thinking?"

If I can make people smile as they go home or even remind them to be positive for even a moment, then I've done something for someone else."

Hernan "Non" Reyes 

Non lives in Caldwell, Idaho with his wife and two children who adore him!

You can read more about Non, purchase prints and can see more of his amazing "mouth art" on his website: