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Crosscurrents is our award-winning radio news magazine, broadcasting Mondays through Thursdays at 11 a.m. on 91.7 FM. We make joyful, informative stories that engage people across the economic, social, and cultural divides in our community. Listen to full episodes at kalw.org/crosscurrents

Dreaming in a dark place: Becoming a filmmaker in prison

Ryan Pagan began his filmmaking career at San Quentin State Prison
Forward This Productions
Ryan Pagan began his filmmaking career at San Quentin State Prison

Growing up, Ryan Pagan was obsessed with movies. When he played outside, he pretended he was in one, making up everything from the plot line to the sound effects. But, as he grew older, fewer people supported that childhood dream. He didn’t think going into film was even an option. It wasn’t until he walked into the media lab at San Quentin State Prison and picked up a video camera that he realized what was missing.

Now, he works on Forward This, a team making digital videos inside prison. Uncuffed producer Timothy Hicks has this story about Ryan’s film career.

To see the world through the lens of my eyes is what I want...to showcase to the world. And so film has allowed me the opportunity to be my true self.
Ryan Pagan

Learn more, sign up for Uncuffed news, and support the program at www.weareuncuffed.org

This piece was brought to you from the team at Uncuffed. Our work in prisons is supported by the California Arts Council, the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, and donations from listeners like you. The producers fact-check content to the best of their ability. Content is approved by an information officer.

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From The Producers Of UncuffedCrosscurrents
Timothy Hicks is a journalist and sports editor from Oakland, California. His work includes print, videography, and audio journalism. Tim aspires to use his platforms to create change in the criminal justice system. He loves chocolate ice cream and Hershey's chocolate bars. After serving 18 years in prison, Tim is now a free man and is continuing his quest of journalism to give voice to change and life.
Stories from inside California prisons