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Big Brain Update: Designer and Illustrator Jon Ashcroft

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Leading up to this year's Big Brain Awards, we're checking in with past winners. Up today: Jon Ashcroft.

Jon Ashcroft's on the move.

The illustrator and designer won a Big Brain Award in 2012 and moved to Seattle soon after. Since then, he's ventured back several times -- only to see Phoenix continue growing as a Southwest art hub.

See also: Announcing the 2014 Big Brain Finalists

We caught up with Ashcroft via e-mail about what he's been up to since winning and what's next.

What have you been up to since winning a Big Brain Award? Shortly after winning the Big Brain Award I moved to Seattle, Washington, and began a small creative studio with a few partners. After a great but very stressful year I decided to go solo and sold my portion of the company. Since then I've been focusing on freelance illustration and design and working on remodeling and selling our Phoenix home before relocating to Portland, Oregon.

What's your next big project? I'm in the middle of rebranding myself and launching an all new site with lots of new work. Aside from that I have been keeping busy with some very fun illustration projects for an array for clients.

Where do you see Phoenix a year from now? Having spent a good portion of the last two years away from Phoenix I have greater context than ever as to how great the Phoenix creative community is and how rapidly the city is improving. Every time I come back there is a great new business to check out and an awesome new event to attend. I'm confident Phoenix will continue on this trajectory and have a bright future as a creative hub in the Southwest.

Where do you see yourself a year from now? My wife and I just sold our house in downtown so we are heading to Portland, where I will be concentrating on my freelance career. We've been fairly nomadic for the better part of the last two years so I'm hoping that in a year I'm settled down in Portland and living a normal life.

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