After growing up in Michigan, a 25 year old Jeffrey Brown moved to Chicago in 2000 to pursue an MFA at the School of the Art Institute. By the time he finished his studies, he had abandoned painting and started drawing comics seriously. His first self-published book, Clumsy, appeared seemingly out of nowhere to grab attention from both cartoonists and comics fans. He specializes in personal and intimate works detailing moments in relationships. He writes and draws his comics in sketchbooks, and his drawing is often out of proportion or incorrect in a way that mirrors that strain and awkwardness of the situations he depicts. He currently lives in Chicago with his wife Jennifer and their son.
Established as a sensitive chronicler of bittersweet adolescent romance and nonsense superhero parody, Brown's current direction remains split between more autobiography examining the minutae of everyday life and whatever humorous fiction he feels in the mood for, and a wide range of fiction subjects in his new series Sulk.
Brown's most popular works include Clumsy (the story of a long-distance relationship), Unlikely (the story of how Brown lost his virginity), AEIOU, and Every Girl is the End of the World For Me, comprising the so-called "Girlfriend Trilogy" and its epilogue. More recently his autobiographical work has included Little Things and the memoir Funny Misshapen Body. His humorous works include Bighead (a super-hero parody), I Am Going To Be Small, Cat Getting Out Of A Bag and Incredible Change-Bots.
His work has been featured in MOME Summer 2005 Vol. 1, as well as Drawn and Quarterly Showcase,McSweeney's #13, and The Best American Comics 2007 both of which were edited by Chris Ware. He was also featured in local newspapers such as the Chicago Reader and NewCity.
Brown's "To Phoenix I'm Sorry I Missed You" was published in the Spring 2008 issue of The Florida Review.
He won an Ignatz Award in 2003 in the category of Outstanding Mini-Comic, for I Am Going To Be Small.
James Kochalka has called Brown's Clumsy his "favorite graphic novel ever."
Clumsy was originally self-published and was later published by Top Shelf Productions and as of 2007 an estimated 20,000 copies have been printed, according to an interview with Brown in The Comics Journal.