JPay Blog

JPay’s Art Contest – Summer Theme

We are excited to announce the revival of the JPay Art Contest! We are searching for incarcerated individuals to share their artwork in the theme of “Summer,” and your loved one has a chance to submit the winning design!  The contest begins Wednesday, August 1, 2018 and ends Friday, August 31, 2018 at midnight.  Participating locations include: California DOC, Georgia DOC, Kentucky DOC, New Jersey DOC, North Dakota DOC, Dakota Women’s Correctional Rehab Center, Ohio DOC and Washington State DOC.


  • 1st place will win a $300.00 Walmart gift card
  • 2nd place will win a $150.00 Walmart gift card
  • 3rd place will win a $50.00 Walmart gift card

Gift cards will be mailed to the family member, friend or representative who submitted the artwork on behalf of the incarcerated individuals.

How to enter:

To enter this contest, incarcerated individuals should send their design to the friend, family member or representative that is submitting on their behalf. The design should then be scanned and emailed to to enter for a chance win. Please include the incarcerated individual’s name, identification number and the facility they are currently incarcerated at. Submissions begin August 1, 2018 and the last day to submit is August 31, 2018.  JPay’s Art Director will be the judge.  He has over thirty years experience in art design and advertising.  He will select the three winning designs and the winners will be announced on the JPay Facebook page on September 5, 2018.

Please click this link to read the Art Contest Rules and Guidelines:



  1. JPayJT

    April 26, 2019 - 1:21 pm

    Hi Maureen – It is a pleasure. Thanks!

  2. JPayJT

    April 26, 2019 - 1:21 pm

    Hi Elisa – JPay service or partners with the Department of Corrections, however any questions or concerns regarding their policies, procedures or way of operating must be directed to the DOC. Thanks!

  3. JPayJT

    December 21, 2018 - 3:20 pm

    Hi Niole – Please email or call 800-574-5729 to speak with a customer service representative. Thanks!

  4. Niole

    December 21, 2018 - 4:45 am

    Hello my fiance somtimes sends me jpay messages while I am at work he is located in Kentucky KSR he does th his to surprise me, let me know hes thinking of him, or if there is something important for him to let me know. THIS does save ed a couple bucks on the phone even though we do talk just as much most of the time. But it’s a very sweet gesture for him he wants me to get it while at work to put a smile on my face n to give me encouragement of how proud n how hard he thinks I’m working. Not to mention being in KSR he does have several h EA although issues n see docs. Hes been in a wheelchair since April 25th 18 when he got locked up he had to learn how to talk breath on his own and also eat so I am constantly worried about what’s going on and if hes seen the doctor which he is supposed to any day it releases some of my stress worry n tension when I can get these surprise emails video grams or pictures while I’m at work because my mi d constantly is worrying and wondering. By the time I get off if I haven’t missed a call or something I’m very worried n concerned about my fiance. What’s the deal with when he sends them to me we will say 230pm or a little after I never see it until 9 10 at night sometimes not until 2 am th he next day n that’s most cases buy this time he CD alls me after work if my anxiety settles but it would help so much if I got that email while working not only would th his make me smile from ear to ear it releaves a lot of my fear n anxiety knowing that I got a message so he will be ok. What can I do hes telling me about the Jays he sends I click on it refresh itinerary never get th he email or nose I just open the app n check myself. Then hour or a couple hours later I get a email saying I have a new jpay message after I have already opened the app refreshed it and all. What can I do to fix this I have updated the app. I just would like to rev the email near th ed time he calls not after I spoken to him on the phone n he tells me what he says that he wrote or not when it’s the next day n he said it’s been sent since the day before. This has called misagreements for us because for a min I thought that he was thinking that he sent me a japay n when I’m haven’t got one notification from it I ask if hes lying or did he message his other girlfriend. Which he dont have but I dont understand after hours why I dont it come through n it would set my mind at ease at work knowing hes doing well and hes having a good day which is fantastic because hes the one that’s on my mind 24/7 while I’m working until I know hes ok n hes eating how is blood test in that morning. He has many health issues n reasons for me to be concerned

  5. JPayJT

    December 12, 2018 - 3:45 pm

    Hi Jane – JPay tablets are not available in Texas DOC facilities. Thanks!

  6. Jane Eby

    December 12, 2018 - 3:26 pm

    Can the Texas inmates get the tablet or do you know? My son is at the Telford Unit in Texas that would be a great Christmas present.

  7. JPayJT

    November 21, 2018 - 2:09 pm

    Hi Vanessa – You can order a tablet for your loved one through your JPay account on or the JPay mobile app. It the option is not available, then your son may already own a tablet, therefore only he can purchase a new one. For more information, please email or call 800-574-5729 to speak with a customer service representative. Thanks!

  8. Vanessa Thomas

    November 21, 2018 - 2:07 pm

    I need to order my son a tablet how can I order it for him. His a and in mate

  9. JPayJT

    November 12, 2018 - 1:32 pm

    Hi Coretta – The tablets are available in MO and they are free to incarcerated individuals. Thanks!

  10. Coretta

    November 9, 2018 - 7:53 pm

    Does Missouri Eastern Correctional Center have their tablets yet, are they free to the inmates or do we the family members have to purchase them?

  11. Mrs. Vansie Morgan

    October 28, 2018 - 6:56 pm

    I am very interested in prison reform. It would be so nice if prisoners were offered an education while under incarceration that would prepare them for self-employment, especially since ex-convicts in general are usually denied employment anyhow. I like the idea of helping them find their place in society by offering them to participate in such things as art contest, poetry, writing etc… There are so many good things they could be learning while in prison. In doing so, I think it would give them so much hope and sense of direction upon their discharge.It thrills my heart to think of how productive they can become with opportunities like this. Please, won’t you kindly give this some thought?

  12. Lynette

    October 14, 2018 - 2:18 pm

    Can we as family members write, call or email someone to get answers why certain states opt out?

  13. Lynette

    October 14, 2018 - 2:12 pm

    My son is also in Florida and for some reason Florida once again is limited in what they will do.

  14. jazzy

    October 8, 2018 - 3:02 pm

    why is the app not updated with a settings tab on the iphon8 settings notification so you can know that you have received a message from your love one …

    it was there however when the app updated now its gone please fix…

  15. JPayJT

    October 2, 2018 - 4:40 pm

    Hi Miranda – VideoGrams are sent through your smart phone. Do you have the tile on that application? Thanks!

  16. Miranda

    October 1, 2018 - 1:37 am

    How do i send a videogram? I got an email saying that MO DOCs support it but I don’t have a button for it, just for emails. Is there something I’m missing?

  17. JPayJT

    September 13, 2018 - 1:11 pm

    Hi Wanda – Does your loved one have a tablet? They can send their table to be unlocked. Thanks!

  18. Wanda Schneider

    September 11, 2018 - 8:18 am

    Anyone know if once an inmate is released what they do with the emails or videos

  19. Anita Hale

    September 8, 2018 - 8:37 pm

    I would like to know what can be done to encourage the state’s not listed to let their inmates to participate? I do believe someone else previously asked this question and for some reason did not get the answer to this …so I decided to ask again. What official denied this in the DOC of the state’s not participating? We have a right to email, mail, or call the official and express our feelings on this matter! I praise you Jpay..on having such a huge part in trying to encourage our loved ones to do something positive and by doing so …upliftng their spirits. I agree with the lady that said a lot of the inmates suffered from traumatic experiences as children which led to where they are today. I have spent a lot of money so far to thru the Jpay system and seeing what you are doing to make life a little happier for them makes giving to Jpay so much easier … thanks for being a blessing to them! Please give us the information so we may contact the necessary people on their non participation in these events…

  20. Bea

    September 5, 2018 - 5:47 pm

    Why can’t I email my boyfriend he’s in mayo FL and I jus bought stamps on Aug 24 and at first it said inmate msg unavailable try later and now it don’t even have the option to email it jus says send money ?? Does anyone else have this problem ?

  21. JPayJT

    September 4, 2018 - 1:29 pm

    Hi Krista – JPay typically hosts this contest once a year. We’ll inform all customers if we launch another art contest in 2018. Thanks!

  22. Yolanda smith

    September 3, 2018 - 9:40 pm

    J pay is a good thing for the im

  23. Krista

    September 2, 2018 - 8:51 am

    Will there be more opportunities like this contest after the summer season?

  24. Elisa Pelaccia

    August 28, 2018 - 12:49 am

    I am wondering why my question went unanswered? I noticed that at least one other poster asked what you meant when you said that certain states “opted not to participate”. I think it is a perfectly reasonable, fair and legitimate question. And someone else asked why an inmate would even need the DOC’s permission to enter a contest through the mail in the first place, which I had never even though of! Good point! They have the right to send and receive mail, so why should they have to get approval/permission to send their loved one a drawing to submit on their behalf? And I was very curious as to what their (the DOC’s) reasoning would be as for not wanting inmates to take part in an art contest, creative writing competition etc. It just seems like jpay is deliberately avoiding the question. Is that because you are afraid of ruffling any feathers? I am not trying to be rude or disrespectful. I am a jpay customer, and I think it’s wonderful that jpay funnels some of it’s profits back into programs to help inmates. That’s the main reason I would rather use your service than some of the other alternatives available. So please forgive me if this comes across as confrontational. That is not my intent. It just does not make sense, and I (along with other’s I’m sure) would like and appreciate a more detailed explanation is all. Thanks.

  25. maureen

    August 27, 2018 - 1:50 pm

    thank you for offering this…it doesn’t include my loved ones facility but i am happy it is here for some

  26. JPayJT

    August 27, 2018 - 1:46 pm

    Hi Yolanda – JPay offers the contest to all media customers, however some states did not opt to participate. There is no government funding involved with JPay. Thanks!

  27. sergio monticco

    August 25, 2018 - 11:16 pm

    Good i like jpay

  28. earline s moorer

    August 22, 2018 - 5:28 pm

    mann florida where you at?

  29. Yolanda

    August 21, 2018 - 7:08 am

    As you can see many friends and family members feel that this is quite unfair to limit to certain states. I’m sure with the FB presence that you all have and the millions of dollars you already receive in government funding along with the millions of dollars that family and friends pour into the service every month that this could’ve been a nationwide opportunity for all inmates.

  30. Elisa Pelaccia

    August 20, 2018 - 7:22 pm

    Hi Jpay. I was wondering why some states did not opt to participate? Did they give a reason? It does not make any sense to me. You would think that they would want to encourage inmates to do positive and productive things with their time. There is a wealth of artistic talent behind the walls. Inmates should be encouraged to discover and nurture their own unique talents and gifts. Many inmates endured severe abuse (physical, sexual, emotional and mental) growing up, and as a result are lacking a healthy sense of self-esteem. This would build their self-esteem and self confidence. Every one has a gift to share with the world. My pen pal is an incredibly talented artist, and he would have loved to participate in this contest. But he is incarcerated in the state of Texas, and that is not one of the states listed. Very disappointing. It seems that some people don’t understand the importance of striking a balance between punishment and rehabilitation, which explains why there is such a high crime/recidivism rate, particularly in certain states. Kudos to Jpay for sponsoring this contest. Good luck to all of the contestants. I look forward to seeing the winner’s artwork.

  31. Lori Figueroa

    August 19, 2018 - 9:00 am

    Is there a way to involve florida doc in this contest

  32. Jerrica

    August 19, 2018 - 3:35 am

    We’re Pennsylvania at ?? My baby daddy is very talented..

  33. Opal Hartman

    August 19, 2018 - 1:19 am

    You said other states “did not opt to participate”. How were they invited? Who made the decision to decline? Were the inmates even informed about the contest? And, please tell us how we can encourage and support participation is such positive self-affirming programs. Thanks!

  34. Susan Melendy

    August 18, 2018 - 6:08 pm

    Why would a state have to opt in. Just because they are incarcerated doesn’t mean that they don’t have some rights. They have a DC number which proves that they are there and have a home address. It is very simple to solve a problem when the desire is there to do so. Simply allow the inmates in all states to participate and have them approve the money being put into their jpay account or authorize their loved one to put it in for them as we do anyway. They can receive and send mail and so there should be no issue that would prevent them from drawing a picture and mailing it out.

  35. Margaret Petrallo

    August 18, 2018 - 2:05 pm

    Is it really $300.000 walmart gift card or its a mistake/typo and should be $300.00? js

  36. Ally

    August 18, 2018 - 6:55 am

    I wish all states would have opted to participate.

  37. wendy seelye

    August 18, 2018 - 5:32 am

    Why only certain states, it should be all states and areas.

  38. JPayJT

    August 15, 2018 - 1:00 pm

    Hi Kathy – We’re sure he is! However, LADOC did not opt in for the promotion. Thanks!

  39. JPayJT

    August 15, 2018 - 11:09 am

    Hi Ronette – Only one submission per participant. That information and more is listed in the post and on the Guidelines landing page (simply click on the link).

  40. Ronette Davis

    August 15, 2018 - 11:07 am

    Can inmates submit more than one drawing?

  41. Celeste Johns

    August 13, 2018 - 10:03 pm

    I agree! If they only knew how uplifting this could be for inmates.

  42. Julia holt

    August 12, 2018 - 2:38 pm

    Millon dollar baby right here…lol…j

  43. Linda Dilts

    August 10, 2018 - 5:20 pm

    That really stinks for people in other states. Artistry is one way for an inmate to sometimes express feelings and also to encourage them to do something that can build up their moral .

  44. Ruth Lemmon

    August 7, 2018 - 9:40 am

    Need to include ALL STATES

  45. Rowena

    August 6, 2018 - 12:25 pm

    NC does nothing to motivate, rehablitate, or reform its

  46. Kathy Thomas

    August 2, 2018 - 12:18 pm

    My husband is really good I think all Correctional Center be able to enter. We are in Louisiana.

  47. JPayJT

    August 1, 2018 - 9:10 pm

    Hi Nancy – Only loved ones located in the listed locations can participate. Other states did not opt to participate.

  48. Nancy Curran

    August 1, 2018 - 1:45 pm

    How can more DOCs enter? My son is in Florida and is a wonderful artist.

  49. Celeste Sykes

    July 30, 2018 - 11:27 am

    that sucks for inmates in other states who are talented

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