I started doing the Throwaway People paintings (including these two works) when I was at a much worse private facility when I first came in. I began painting the chaos that surrounded me. I had to express these emotions somehow since you have to always maintain a facade in prison.

Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.

Republish our articles for free, online or in print, under a Creative Commons license.

W.B. Livingston

W.B. Livingston is an artist who takes his inspiration from music. “I have been completely consumed with music my entire life. I have gone through so many years of my life where the only thing I wanted to do was sit in a room, drink whiskey, listen to records and cry,” he wrote. “And, as the nights would wear on, I would always end up painting.” He loves working with art supplies, but he finds them unnecessary. He draws in the dirt, smears toothpaste on cardboard, makes paint out of instant coffee and bribes the paint crews for whatever he can get. He is currently incarcerated in Oklahoma. Instagram: @prisonart6.