Born in 1985, Jay earned a B.A. in Art Education and Fine Art from Purdue University in 2011. He taught high school studio art before moving to the UK for four years, during which time he earned an M.A. in art history at the University of London, SOAS, and an M.Phil. in Tibetan and Himalayan Studies at the University of Oxford. He's also studied and worked in Manhattan, Kathmandu, and Seattle. He currently lives in New Haven, Connecticut with his wife, Sara Collins.