The idea of prison doesn't typically summon warm feelings of an encouraging and creative environment, but that hasn't stopped thousands of inmates from expressing themselves in artistic and non-criminal ways behind bars. Here are 34 pictures of awesome art done by prison inmates.

This guy was probably arrested for illegally modifying lowriders so their backs dragged against the ground, showering sparks on the unsuspecting public.

The same burgeoning artist was arrested again for selling bikes with no chains or proper pedals.

This could be the artist's hand, but it's hard to believe that San Quentin would allow its inmates to wear such a distasteful french cuff / cuff link combination.

One of the few examples of Freemason prison art.

Long before the shirt, there was the prison art.

Chagall would doubtlessly be proud.

A representation of the plunge into criminal insanity, or a comment on the dehumanizing nature of the prison system?

What? They only give you Pepsi in prison...no Coke? Those poor inmates are really doing it tough.

A beautiful representation of the psychological ramifications war has on the human spirit.

This award-winning example of inmate art is reminiscent of the uber-famous 'Afghan Girl' by National Geographic photographer Steve McCurry.

This piece of art shows an unwavering patriotism in the inmate, despite his incarceration.

There's a great use of contrasting colors in this representation of natural beauty.

The artist here uses an expressionist technique to capture the movement of the butterflies.

For some reason this one is creepy. Pooh is staring into the very depths of our souls.

This interesting landscape painting has an almost prehistoric feel about it.

The limited color palette of this painting, punctuated with the white dress as a central focus, as well as its use of negative space, brings about the notion of beauty found in isolation.

This painting is of elephants. It's pretty cool.

This painting answers the age-old question: what if Watchmen's Rorschach gave up his life of vigilante crime fighting and just clowned around?

It's not clear where the inmate found the materials to build this ship, but if they were scrounged up in prison, this construction is all the more impressive.

Victorian Bliss.

A message of peace from a reformed inmate.

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The intricate carving in this piece of inmate art is nothing short of amazing.

Where's Waldo? Making out, that's where.

Even in prison, this man is too smooth to make eye contact when a sweet senorita is looking his way.

Doll (jail)house.

Each section of this pizza-like wheel was painted by a different inmate.

Peace on earth for everyone who has gigantic hands.

In the magnified section is a rose made solely from toilet paper. Now that's creativity within constraints.

Epic Beard Man.

A beautifully captured sunset.

Perhaps a comment of racial oppression in the prison system.
The point still stands.

This one's not creepy at all.