What’s the story you’re trying to tell with this picture book of your childhood?
I’m trying to show people where I come from through a perspective most aren’t familiar with. I’m trying to say something about my surroundings without talking.
How has it shaped your life?
My upbringing and the things around me shaped my perspective and how I look at the world today. My Father and I are opposites as far as our lifestyle’s are concerned.
When and why did you decide to make a picture book?
My Father and I didn’t really have opportunities to directly connect when I was young, so I wanted to make something special for my Father’s Birthday. I didn’t have the resources I needed to bring the project to life, that’s when Juston Tucker at Diamond Supply Co. stepped in and helped me curate the book.
Does your dad know about the book? What does your family think?
Yes, my Father knows about the book. I’ve tried sending a copy of it a few times, but it keeps getting rejected. My Dad is currently helping me on my next project by sending more content from prison. We’re working on compiling photos from his time in prison, gifts he’s received, drawings, all of that. My Family on my Dad’s side doesn’t know about what I’m working on because they don’t keep in touch with us.
What are you trying to give/say to the public with this book?
I’m just sharing life as a prisoner, showing you something pure and real. It’s like my Dad says, “You can’t fake the funk when it comes to doing time”.
Did you collect all these pictures yourself all these years or how did you got a hold of them?
My Mom collected these photos because my Dad wasn’t around, but now I’m in a position to do something with them. I’ve had access to all of these photos since I was a baby, but I’m only getting to work on this since last year.
How was the process of deciding what pictures to include?
A lot of the photos spoke for themselves, I was limited to what I could include due to the nature of who some of them were intended for. My Mom didn’t want any part of the book, so I had to make sure she wasn’t included in any way.