Jan Giling was born in Berkhout. Educated in painting and graphic design, he was an illustrator for the publications of the publishing house De Spaarnestad from the 1940s, and for advertising companies like Ogilvy and Walter Thompson. He worked at De Spaarnestad's studio in Haarlem alongside artists like Frans Piët, Harry Balm and Bert Bus, and made illustrations for several magazines. Among his work were some comic stories in 'Onze Wondere Wereld' (1952), a section in the Katholieke Illustratie supplement Grabbelton. He retired from illustration in 1978 and has since focused on painting in his hometown Heiloo.