CA child prodigy paints for a purpose, challenges ABC7 News anchor to math duel

PIEDMONT, Calif. -- A kid prodigy out of California is kicking off 2021 by showcasing her artwork, which has raised thousands for a non-profit which helps patients with life-threatening diseases.

From the moment you meet Juliette Leong at her family's California home, surrounded by her nature-inspired artwork, it's apparent she is not your average 4-and-a-half-years-old.

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She is bold and talkative and converses almost like an adult, but with a child-like voice and playfulness. This mini-member of MENSA (yes, she tested and her family even provides her MENSA card as proof!) has a lot of hobbies like swimming, martial arts, rock climbing and telling jokes.

"Why did the dinosaur cross the road? Because the chicken wasn't born yet!" Juliette giggles.

But it's her paintings, which impresses us the most. Her parents said they started as scribbles at the tender age of 8-months. Just finger paintings on a kitchen counter, but by age 3, her art suddenly and dramatically improved.

"I don't know how she did this is just blew me away! Everyone said, 'who's the new Bob Ross!?'" laughs her father, Jonathan Leong.

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Juliette has created more than 100 works of art, with nearly a dozen fetching over $4,000 for the Asian American Donor Program since October of 2020.

"I sell the paintings to help people with cancer find a match," Juliette said.

With her mom's help, Juliette makes painting tutorials on YouTube, and even offered to give our ABC7 sister station KGO's news anchor, Dion Lim, a lesson!

"We're painting dandelions!" Juliette declared.

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As Juliette and Dion waited for the paint to dry between layers, Juliette showed off her violin and singing skills, and even challenges Dion to a math competition.

"Those are EASY!" beamed Juliette several minutes later as she completed her page full of addition, subtraction and division problems. Meanwhile, Dion still had at least four problems left that needed solving.

Juliette has these words of advice for anybody who wants to make a difference in the New Year.

"You can do it if you focus!"
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