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Empowering Artists Behind The Wall

An enlightening interview with Aaron Smith.

In the latest Escaping The Odds blog we interviewed Buck Adams who is behind the innovative and barrier-breaking Art For Redemption platform. Buck spent about 2 years incarcerated and during that time, he was impressed by the artistic abilities of his fellow inmates. So upon his release , he decided to provide a way for incarcerated individuals to be compensated for their art work. His non-profit provides inmates within the Colorado Department of Corrections the ability to market their artwork and earn income from sales.

For those who have spent any amount of time in the criminal justice system, you can attest for the amazing artistry that occurs behind the wall. Even with a lack of resources, art has always been a cornerstone for many to cope and express themselves. It has been said that spending one-thousand hours at your craft will lead to mastery, and that mastery is what you find in prisons across the county.

However, it is no secret that money and prison go hand in hand. For those who are incarcerated without financial resources, their time will not only be much more miserable, but damaging to their long-term success. Sure, some critics argue that prison is supposed to be tough, but like Buck Adams mentions during the interview, the punishment is being in prison itself--locked away from friends, family and society as a whole.

Through Mr. Adams' platform, men and women can use their artistic skills to save much needed money to re-start their lives post release. More than that, by providing a source of income and a path to independence, the possibility of recidivism not only decreases, but ex-offenders can become positive contributing members of society.

With the support of the Colorado Department of Corrections, Mr. Adams hopes to expand Art For Redemption to other correctional systems across the United States. This will not be an easy feat by any means as many prison mail rooms, not to mention institutional policy, was designed to restrict inmates communication and interactions with society.

We don't expect this to slow down Mr. Adams however. Expect big things for him and the Art For Redemption platform in 2022.

Visit their website to learn more about them:

Edited by Brett Booker (currently incarcerated).

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