In the middle of getting an art degree Wes Holloway was injured and paralyzed in a diving accident. This was just a bump in the road. Soon Wes returned to school and finished his degree. Today his creativity continues to flow and the passion to help and educate is strong. Wes is an art educator and recently became coordinator of Opening ARTS & Minds, United Spinal Association of Houston’s new art education program. The program offers an artist studio and weekly classes for anyone with SCI/D interested in creating art. It’s a fantastic way to get people engaged and create community – Way to go Wes!
Get to know Wes below:
Occupation: Artist and
Injury Level: C5-6
Cause of Injury (tell us your
story!): I was a freshman in college and did a bellyflop into a man-made
pool at a foam party. The doctors think I hit my head on the opposite side, but
I think I hit my chin on the bottom.
Siblings: An older brother
Hometown: Katy, TX
Current residence: Katy
Education/Degrees: BA &
BFA Studio Art
Other accomplishment you’re
proud of? Showing artwork around the country including The Smithsonian, and
overseas in Manchester, UK
Do you have a mentor? Who? Why?
Rafferty Laredo and Bill Arning. Rafferty is my mentor for anything
disability/advocacy/non-profit related. He was my occupational therapist in
rehab 15 years ago and has been a constant supporter and teacher in so many
aspects of my life. Bill has been mentoring me in the “art world” because it is
its own strange beast.
Favorite band/kind of
music/musician: Eclectic mix of funk/soul/disco
Favorite films? Big Fish,
Favorite books; favorite
authors? Anthem by Ayn Rand
Favorite magazines? National
Geographic (great to read and use for art reference/collage)
Favorite restaurant/food? I’ll
eat anything. Recently discovered Poke, and I’m obsessed.
Favorite beverage? Water and
Favorite websites? YouTube.
I can find out how to do anything, or just get sucked into endless cat videos
Who do you live with? By
myself. But my mom currently lives very close.
Do you own a car? Drive?
What’s your set-up? I have a Dodge Grand Caravan that I drive using hand
Where did you go on your last
vacation? I can’t remember! Maybe that’s a sign I need one lol
Do you have a pet? What? A
dog. Blue Heeler.
Do you have your own website?
Do you go out much? Where? How
often? With whom? I go out when I make a point to. Otherwise, I’m home
What’s your dream job? Full
Do you work out or play any
painting, going to any arts/cultural event
Hidden talents? I can recite
Lil Kim’s “How Many Licks” by memory. Haha
What irritates you? Inconsiderate
What do you consider awesome?
Anything space/time related. Mind boggling stuff like that blows my mind, but I
also love to think about it.
Where would you love to live?
Paris or Rome
What takes up the majority of
your time? If I’m not creating artwork, I am teaching or planning lessons
What do you do in your free
time? Flick through social media apps.
What do you wish you had more
time for? Sleep!
How are you involved with
BACKBONES? Reveca reached out to me 😉
Do you have a favorite BACKBONES
memory? Not yet!
Favorite wheelchair accessory or
device? Nothing special.
Do you have any interesting
disability life hacks? Sugru. It’s a moldable putty that dries hard. I’ve
made countless knobs, grabber hooks, and attachments.
If I take a look inside your refrigerator
what would I find? Leftovers and milk.
Dinner with anyone, dead or
alive, who would it be? What would you ask them? Leonardo Davinci. I’d want
to sit there and flip through his sketchbooks with him.
During your child hood what was
your favorite cartoon? Thundercats!
How many pairs of shoes do you
own? Only 1 or 2
Describe your sixth grade school
picture. Chubby awkward naive and clueless
Favorite videogame? I have
been known to spent too much time playing World of Warcraft
Your default karaoke song? Destinys
Type of gum you like? Spearmint
A short term goal: Share my
artwork with more people
A Long term goal: Same as
A quote you like: Good.
Better. Best. Never let it rest. Until your good is better than your best.
Anything else you want to tell
us? I live on a steady diet of GIFS and memes