After graduation, I remained in the Los Angeles area to further my studies in the field of medical illustration. I attended California State University, Long Beach to be mentored by a well-known medical illustrator. Living the life of a starving artist, I picked up a part-time job creating medical illustrations for a company that supplied courtroom exhibit illustrations.
The call to return home to the islands came in 1982 when I realized that I missed the blue skies and the tropical surroundings of Hawaii. I took the skills I learned and started Bio Medical Design Studios. My work allowed me to build a large clientele of personal injury lawyers for whom my illustrations became an integral litigation tool. I was also involved in illustrating a surgical reconstruction book, a mural at the Honolulu Zoo and other projects.
You would think that my weekends would be spent bodysurfing at Oahu’s Sandy Beach, but the call to be of service to others was greater. With the Department of Parks and Recreation, I assisted in creating and implementing Saturday programs for mentally disabled teens and adults. After more than 10 years of serving this population and as a youth coach, I contracted with the department to manage a grant-funded program addressing issues involving youth gangs and youth at risk.
Challenges in people’s lives force them to make unexpected changes. From 1997 to 2003, I was employed with the department on a year-to-year contract. This was followed by the creation of a permanent position emphasizing programs for youth at risk. I suspended my illustration business to commit myself to the work with young people. What is unprecedented for the City of Honolulu is that we have brought in nearly $1 million of outside funding for youth programming in Waipahu, an impoverished, rural community.
Loyola still calls to me several times a year, if not through assisting with recruiting young men and women to the school, then by participating with other alumni in events and activities. How I miss the simple life of being a student at LMU and enjoying a game of football in the Sunken Garden!
Jayson Chun ’76