In addition to the phenomenon of motion, Jonson is also concerned with the specific instant: the point in the action which most dramatically highlights the athlete extending himself almost beyond his limits. It could be the face of a long distance runner straining to reach the finish line, the arched back of a pole vaulter as he barely clears the bar, or the stretched legs and clawing hands of the high hurdler. For all their apparent spontaneity, which sometimes borders on the abstract, however, his paintings adhere to the classical tenets of drawing, composition, value, and color harmony.
Jonson's first illustration assignments were for magazines and advertising agencies in California where more and more art directors who were beginning to tire of the photographic realism then predominant responded to Jonson's painterly approach.
Since then he has moved to the East Coast and his work appears regularly in Sports Illustrated, Ski, Time-Life Books, and other nationally famous publications.
He has also exhibited in many museums including the National Art Museum of Sport Competition where he was recently a top award winner.