Jan Gulbransson was born in Munich in 1949. He is the grandson of the renowned German artist and caricaturist Olaf Gulbransson. He attended the Munich Art Academy in 1969, but left after five semesters to join the T.C. Animation Studio. He worked with this studios until 1980. Meanwhile, from 1977 to 1979, he had his first stint in comics with the children's comic 'Berti's Abenteuer', that was published by Verler Verlag.
From 1981 until the 1990s, Gulbransson drew 'Donald Duck' stories for Oberon, the Dutch publisher of Disney comics. He wrote and drew many of his own stories, but also illustrated stories by other writers, including Jan Kruse, Evert Geradts and Frank Jonker. In the late 1980s, he co-wrote several stories with Robert Klein, mostly ten-pagers. Since 2004, Gulbransson has been working more regularly for the Danish publisher Egmont. He has also worked on special projects directly for Ehapa in Germany, such as the epic 'Uncle Scrooge' story 'Das älteste Auto der Welt' in 1986 and the 'Die Ducks in Deutschland' series in 2012.
During the 1980s and 1990s, Gulbransson also continued his work in the field of animation. Since the 1990s he is also making illustrations for books for both children and adults. Besides Disney, Gulbransson has also worked with Gabriel Nemeth on several comics. They both drew for the advertising comic Mike of the German credit union banks, and created the character 'Hausmeister Zwetschke' for the Carlsen magazine Moxxito in 1988. In 1995, they started the comic strip 'Willi Wurm und seine Freunde'. Gulbransson made this strip with Nemeth until 2004, and then continued it on his own until Nemeth's return in 2011. Gulbransson and Nemeth also cooperated on a 'Globi' book for Globi Verlag in Switzerland in 1999.