Jon Arvizu: 2013 Big Brain Awards Finalist, Design

You submitted nominations for awards given to the Valley's emerging creatives and the results are in. Introducing our Big Brain 2013 Finalists.

Leading up to the Big Brain Award awards announcement and celebration on April 27, Chow Bella and Jackalope Ranch will introduce the finalists.

Up today: Jon Arvizu

photos by Becky Bartkowski, design and artwork by Jon Arvizu

Jon Arvizu is a hired gun. That's how he describes his day-to-day work as a designer, illustrator, art director, and printmaker at Trapdoor Studio.

When he isn't working on freelance projects for a Swiss brewery, a local motorcycle club in need of a fresh logo, or Phoenix-based entertaining guru Cheryl Najafi's website, the 37-year-old indulges his hobbies of letterpress and mono-screen printing.

See also:
- Announcing the 2013 Big Brain Finalists
- Meet New Times' 2013 Big Brain Finalists and Celebrate the Winners at Artopia on April 27

Becky Bartkowski
Arvizu does it all in the backyard studio of his Scottsdale home, where he lives with his wife and their two young sons. The space is a den full of his ideas, experiments, and projects -- many of them look like they'd fit right into the Midcentury Modern world of Mad Men. The retro imagery is everywhere from Ralph Haver and Al Beadle homes to a record player, tikis, and pinup girls.

People ask Arvizu about Mad Men a lot, he says. Though he watched the first few seasons of the show, he walked away with more of an appreciation for its style and design than its plot.

That's how Arvizu has taken in artwork since he was a kid. He's drawn toward lines and colors more than anything.

"My earliest memories centered around art, advertising, and design," Arvizu says. "Saturday morning cartoons and comic books; toy packaging and trading cards; Cracker Jacks and Bazooka Joe gum; Crayola's art carousel; Powell Peralta's 'Bones Brigade' logo; Van Halen's 1984 album cover."

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