Born in Oregon but raised in the San Fernando Valley, Vaughn first learned to draw with the help of his father, a commercial artist for Disney. “That’s how my dad and I hung out—we made art,” he says. Despite his penchant for drawing and painting, Vaughn decided to forgo pursuing a career in art in favor of studying to become a doctor. But after three years at the University of California, Santa Cruz, he dropped out and returned to Los Angeles to work construction while honing his painting style in a makeshift studio in a friend’s garage.
In 2001, Vaughn teamed up with his grandmother for his debut exhibition at a community center in the Valley. Within the next few years, he was showing in New York and San Francisco. By 2006, his work was featured in exhibitions in both the United States and abroad including group and solo shows at leading-edge galleries like The DACTYL Foundation for the Arts, New York; Galerie Bertrand & Gruner, Geneva; Lazarides, London; Art Agents Gallery, Hamburg, Germany, and at art fairs such as ArtLA in Los Angeles, VOLTA at the Whitney Biennial in New York, and ArtBrussels in Belgium.