Zhai Runshu (1929) hails from Nanhe, Hebei Province. During his childhood, his grandfather and father instilled in him a love for calligraphy and drawing. After finishing Xingtai Normal College, he started working in the Jinnan Liberated Area in 1947 as art editor, first with the Jinnan Illustrated Publishers, then with the Hebei Provincial Art Design Office, the Hebei Illustrated (河北画报, Hebei huabao) and the Hebei Daily (河北日报, Hebei ribao). Later he was art editor with the Hebei Provincial News Publishing Office.
Zhai is known for his calligraphy and drawings. He collaborated with Zhong Zhihong, Gao Tongbao and Zhang Zengmu.