Kaopio began his career as a mouth-brush artist and writer after
going through rehabilitatin for a diving accident in 1994, which
left him a quadriplegic. His work marries the ancient Hawiian
tradition of oral story-telling with the modern art form of
painting. His artwork is accompanied by legends told to him
when he was a young boy by his grandmother, Pearl Leilani White-Kaopio.