About the Artist

I've always loved to draw. Ever since I was able to pick up a crayon and scribble with it, I've been doodling and cartooning and illustrating. I have a talent for drawing, but I'm also hopelessly neat. Fairly early on I moved from pencils to pen, shied away from chalks and pastels, and only did one brief stint with airbrush. In high school I experimented with computer graphics, back when Photoshop was still a rarity. I made a self-portrait in Aldus SuperPaint, which my art teacher had to take to a special printer to print out (color inkjet printers were also hard to come by at that time). Digital graphics have come a long way since then, and I try to keep up a little.

I love defying convention. Besides attempting computer graphics when others thought it would never catch on, I created artwork in other unlikely media. I borrowed graphing calculators from friends and returned them with miniature portraits on them. When I left Florida for college and discovered snow, I would spend hours at a time sculpting, delighting in the creation of something that would be gone in a few days. A few years ago I picked up pumpkin carving as a hobby, and fell in love with that, too.

Somewhere along the line, I picked up an Etch-a-Sketch, and discovered that I had a knack for it. For a while it didn't really get beyond being a fun party trick. I'd pick it up, turn out a quick portrait, and then shake it away just to see the look on people's faces. Eventually my roommates convinced me to apply for an arts grant, and I was able to put up a small wall of Etch-a-Sketches in the student center with an interactive exhibit. In 2004, I started spending more time on more detailed drawings and making them permanent, but I still love doing quick five-minute sketches for fun.

My artwork is meant to delight. I love being able to gather a crowd of normally-jaded teenagers and see their faces light up. Sometimes people walk by my little display and do a double-take at the Etch-a-Sketches--I live for these moments. For me, being created in God's image means I have an urge to create. I tend to see the world differently, and my goal is to help others take another look. I do that through cartoons, illustrations, Etch-a-Sketch drawings, jack-o'-lanterns, paintings, photos, and anything else I can get my hands on.

As of December 2003, I'm a stay-at-home dad, and it's a great job. It's only been recently that I've been able to refer to myself as "an artist" without feeling a little strange, but I picked up "daddy" with no trouble. It means I don't get long uninterrupted periods to work on my artwork, but I do what I can. I hope you enjoy my artwork, and check back often to see what's new!

Jonathan H. Liu | jhliu@rainybayart.com | 11.16.2004