The Futur with Chris Do

The Futur

The Futur podcast is a show that explores the interesting overlap between design, marketing, and business.Our host (and CEO of The Futur), Chris Do, holds candid conversations with inspirational people from the worlds of design, technology, marketing, business, philosophy and personal development.These conversations go deep. With the aim of understanding who these incredible people are, what drives them to do what they do, and what can we—the listener—learn from it all.Visit for show notes and additional information from each episode.

All Episodes

Welcome to our second installment of 5 rounds. In this episode, we welcome creative sales coach (and Futur Pro Group member) Ivy Malik to the show. Her mission: grill Chris Do with a series of five tough questions. And she does not disappoint. Ivy tasks Chris with questions about how to be your true self in both public and private, why he dislikes the current state of educational sales, the role emotion plays in his decision making, and the biggest one of all: is The Futur a cult? Sponsored by Skillshare - Sponsored by BetterHelp - Sponsored by Storyblocks - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Dec 1

1 hr 8 min

If you were to order an expensive meal at a nice restaurant, but then asked if they could knock 50% off of the price, how would your waiter respond? Probably not well. Of all the possible replies, the most likely one would be, “I’m sorry, we can’t do that.” Which is not surprising. So then why do people in the creative business bend to such requests from clients? In this fun Clubhouse talk, Chris helps people with their pricing and negotiation troubles by roleplaying scenarios with them. When do you push? When do you pull? And what do you listen for? Following a pre-written sales script is easy, but when conversational curveballs are thrown at you, they fall apart. Hear how Chris approaches these delicate discussions and learn why being in the moment and listening is all you need. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Nov 24

1 hr 53 min

Have you ever read a lengthy paragraph from a book and then sort of woken up and asked yourself, “Wait. What did I just read?” You and us both. Reading is a fantastic way to learn, but if you don’t retain that precious information then what is the point? In this Clubhouse discussion Chris shares his approach to reading books. How he reads, his note taking method, and why he suggests you read a book three times. And he is joined by The Futur Pro Group members, Stephanie Owens and Rahul Bhogal. Whether you are a bookworm or not, you will pick up a few practical tips to get more out of what you read. So join us while we explore and discuss the powerful magic of language and written word. Sponsored by Skillshare - Sponsored by BetterHelp - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Nov 17

1 hr 58 min

In the corporate world, climbing the proverbial ladder seems common. To get ahead (and make more money) you must climb through the ranks. But in the creative industry, it feels different. We pursue a career in the arts because we're passionate about things like design, photography, and animation. We enjoy making things ourselves. But is that enough to sustain a long career? Will we be aged-out of our jobs? Should we strive to be more than just the artisan? In this lively discussion, Chris is joined by Anneli Hansson, Rodrigo Tasca, and several more guests on Clubhouse to discuss these questions. They talk about what it means to be a designer versus a strategist and how the two relate. We also hear from a variety of guests that share their opinion and experience on the matter. Design is a multifaceted industry. There are many paths you can take. We hope this conversation helps you find yours. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Nov 10

1 hr 18 min

The concept of branding has been around since the dawn of human existence. It is hard-wired into us. Or as Patrick Hanlon refers to it: it’s our primal code. Patrick Hanlon is what many in the creative advertising world call the OG of branding. He is the founder and CEO of, an acclaimed branding group with an impressive roster of Fortune 100 companies. Patrick also authored a book of the same name (Primal Branding) that has become required reading for the marketing departments of hugely successful companies like Google. In this episode, Patrick and Chris discuss this fascinating perspective of branding as an innate, definitive, and predictive concept. One that connects directly to what it means to be human. If you are a student of branding, then study this conversation. Patrick shares his branding insights and provides excellent examples along the way. Sponsored by Skillshare - Sponsored by BetterHelp - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Nov 3

1 hr 11 min

Adam J. Kurtz (aka Adam JK) is a designer, artist, and speaker whose illustrative work is rooted in honesty, humor and a little darkness. In this episode, we welcome Adam back to the show to talk about what it’s like writing a book about optimism when it feels like you’re living in an end-of-the-world movie. Adam and Chris also discuss their experience with therapy (and the immense benefit it has on your mental health), how to write like you speak, and why perfection is overrated. Sponsored by Storyblocks - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit


Oct 27

1 hr 13 min

This episode comes from a discussion held on Clubhouse. The topic: perfectionism. Where it comes from and why it hinders your growth. Better said (and by Winston Churchhill), “Perfection is the enemy of progress.” In this talk, Chris is joined by The Futur Pro Group members Martha Cristina Garza, Jule Kim, and Lola Bakare. Each of them share their experience with perfection getting the best of them. So, how do you fight that intrinsic need to make something perfect before you share it? According to Chris: stay away from the results and enjoy the process. Jim Rohn famously said that success leaves clues, but failure leaves better ones. If anything, it is a gift. Think about this way—everyone that you look up to was once where you are today. They took that first step. They started. And they probably failed at least once. FAIL. First attempt in learning. Sponsored by BetterHelp - Sponsored by LightStream - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Oct 20

1 hr 24 min

This episode comes from a livestream we hosted via YouTube in early 2020. In it, Chris fields questions from a group of design majors visiting from Loyola Marymount University. The Q&A covers topics like the difference between art and design, demonstrating your value to clients, what to charge for your work, and why there is truly nothing new under the sun. Sponsored by Storyblocks - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Oct 13

1 hr 36 min

David Schwarz is an award-winning creative leader and one of the founding partners of acclaimed experience design agency, Hush. He’s spent his career designing brand experiences that integrate content, interactivity, architecture and technology. But what is experience design? It depends on where you are and who you ask. From where David stands experience design is about creating an immersive, three-dimensional, sensory experience in the real world. And affecting how you and I feel as we move through it. In this episode, David shares how his agency approaches designing these unique experiences and the impending blur between the physical world and the digital world. Sponsored by BetterHelp - Sponsored by Skillshare - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Oct 6

1 hr 6 min

Once in a while we come across a story that we believe is worth sharing, even though it might not fit within the topics we generally talk about. Kyle Quilausing’s story is one of those. He’s gone from triumph, to tragedy, and back again. A sequence of events that touches on a recurring theme for our show: resilience. How we each find our way out of a dark place and the belief that it is never too late to become the person you are meant to be. Kyle’s message is simple: you are one decision away from living your dream or nightmare life. Either way, you get to decide. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 29

1 hr 11 min

What does it take to run your own YouTube channel? According to Charli Marie, putting in the work is a good place to start. We know that’s not the advice you wanted to hear. But that’s the practical truth. You have to do the hard work. By day, Charli is Creative Director at ConvertKit. A creative marketing platform made for creators. And also by day, she is a YouTuber on a mission to help designers improve their worth as professionals. It almost sounds too good to be true, but Charli has built herself what some may call a dream job. On her personal channel, she shares what she’s working on at her day job. The good, the bad, and even the financial aspects of it. Which makes her content so fascinating. These are real projects with real stakes attached to them. In this episode, Charli and Chris discuss how she balances these two roles, that can be at odds from time to time, and her strategy for doing so. But most of the conversation centers around what it’s like running your own YouTube channel. The benefits, the frustrations, and the awkwardness of recording yourself. If you aspire to start your own YouTube channel then give this episode a listen. It’s a long game, but you can learn from those that have played it. This episode is sponsored by Storyblocks - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 22

1 hr 9 min

In the final round, Mo and Chris discuss what success means and how you can reverse engineer someone else’s. If you’re thinking, “but how do I effectively do that?” then you are asking the wrong question. There are no shortcuts. The path is tough and you will struggle. There is no way around it. But the reward you get, is efficiency. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 17

16 min 37 sec

In round 4, Mo and Chris discuss goals and expectations. When it comes to setting goals, you should be uncompromising in them, but flexible in how you achieve them. If the plan is not working, change the plan, not the goal. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 16

13 min 24 sec

Round 3 is all about balance. Mo asks something personal of Chris: how do you balance this uncompromising purpose and your responsibility as a husband and father? It’s a fantastic question and something that many people struggle with. Especially when it comes to making big, scary decisions. As the expression goes, if you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 15

11 min 52 sec

In round 2, Chris and Mo tackle the concept of ikigai. That is, how to live your life to it’s fullest potential. Theoretically, it makes good sense, but when it comes to taking action so few of us have the courage to do so. We are creatures of habit and comfort. The hard work and failure that leads to fulfillment is not an easy sell. But why is that? And how can you persevere in spite of that discomfort? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 14

11 min 28 sec

To celebrate our 150th episode of The Futur podcast we are releasing a new episode every day this week for a total of 5 episodes. We call them 5 Rounds with Mo. In each episode The Futur Pro Group member and friend of the show, Mo Ismail, will ask Chris a tough question and he won’t let him off the hook until he’s happy with the answer. In round one, Mo asks Chris about how he’s able to break big, complex problems down into something that anyone can understand. And how he does it without letting his emotions interfere. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 13

15 min 20 sec

Henry Kaminski Jr. is a self-taught graphic designer and brand consultant. Over the past decade he’s built a multi-million dollar design business. But the road there was filled with rusty nails. Some of which were ready to force him off the road and into a ditch. In this episode, Henry shares his origin story. From surviving his tumultuous youth to earning his first million. Since he and Chris are close, it feels like you’re listening to old friends having a sincere—and at times difficult—candid conversation. Chris and Henry talk about the dynamics of business, family and how when the two overlap it can lead to a lifetime of trouble and heartache. Think of this conversation as part business story, part therapy. It’s rare that we’re able to be this vulnerable on our show and a kind reminder that we can learn a lot when we do allow ourselves to be. Sponsored by Storyblocks - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 8

1 hr 13 min

Are you familiar with the term “golden handcuffs”? It’s a phrase that refers to financial incentives given to employees to make them stick around. Because when you have everything you need, why would you ever want to leave? In this episode, we talk with illustrator, graphic designer, and Futur Pro Group member, Anthony Banks who—at the time this was recorded in 2018—was considering a big career move. But he is conflicted. His job is stable. It pays well. All of which is good for his family. For all intents and purposes, Anthony is doing just fine. But is fine enough? Or, without any room to grow in his current position, is he riding a slow boat to nowhere? The conversation you’re about to hear is from 2018. The world feels like a different place now, but our the dilemma remains the same: are golden handcuffs worth it? We do the math and find out. Sponsors Skillshare - BetterHelp - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Sep 1

1 hr 5 min

Welcome to another special episode format we call Hey Chris. We take listener submitted questions and make Chris answer them on the spot. No reading them ahead of time. No preparation. No time to think. Just a candid conversation between Chris Do and Greg Gunn. In this episode we answer four unique questions about topics like how to apply value based pricing (and when not to), positioning your business, whether to spend your time learning or doing, and and how to find your purpose. Have a question for Chris? Visit and ask away. This episode is sponsored by Storyblocks - Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Aug 25

1 hr 4 min

When he would get sent to detention, he’d spend his time there drawing for hours. And despite growing up in a super small town in South Carolina, he had access to an amazing art program. With the help of a nurturing mother, and a lot of talent and hustle, Douglas worked his way into a design career but always wanted more. He had spent a lot of his life creating, but came to a point where he wanted to explore the business side as well, and moved into strategy. In this week's conversation, Chris talks to Douglas about growing up and going to school with very few resources, moving into the world of strategy and the value it has provided both for Douglas's clients and himself, and Douglas's hustle as a teacher, bringing up a new generation. Douglas shares his unique perspective on life itself and how important it is to do what you love. “Life is long,” Douglas says. “Do you want to spend your life going to a job you hate?” After completing an arts program from Hampton University, Douglas took his resume and experience and applied to Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. He studied communication design and discovered the problem-solving capabilities of graphic design. During his time at Pratt, Douglas was inspired to teach and work in the industry he had grown to love so much. When he was just 22 years old, Douglas was found and hired at Juno Online Services, but lost the job a year later when a recession hit. Then, when he was kicked out of his apartment at 25 years old, he became an adjunct professor. With so many forces going against him, Douglas persevered through curveball after curveball. He learned to hustle and keep going despite the scarcity of opportunities. Douglas’s story is nothing short of inspiring. We highly encourage you to listen and hear how he turned from designer to strategist, to now teach other creatives the business of design. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Aug 18

1 hr 22 min

The internet can make people look very one dimensional. When in reality, they are far from. Ognjen Topic is a great example of that. He is a graphic designer and also a three time world champion in the competitive martial art, Muy Thai. You’ll hear about Ognjen’s tumultuous life journey as a Serbian born in Bosnia. Civil war forced his family to flee the country and ultimately immigrate to the United States where he fell in love with graphic design and developed a secret fighting career. You might think that fighting and design don’t have much in common, and you’re probably right. But one important concept they do share is mindset. So how do you prepare when your life (or serious injury) is on the line? What kind of training do you need? And how can you develop the mental fortitude it takes to survive? Not to overdramatize creative work, but putting yourself out there and taking on jobs can be scary. Maybe not get punched in the liver scary, but emotionally just as frightening. In this episode, our Ognjen shares his mindset for how to use your fear as a tool to help guide you through a scary situation. - Sponsored by Storyblocks Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Aug 11

53 min 17 sec

This episode comes from a Clubhouse Q&A hosted by Billy and Glenn Lundy of Breakfast with Champions. During this candid chat, they ask Chris a series of questions about mindset and marketing. Things like how and why you should be specific with your goals, what creativity really means (hint: it’s not just for artists and designers), and why our future is in the hands of creative thinkers. Also, there is a great listener Q&A where people put Chris on the spot and he offers real time, personalized guidance. If you have any interest in changing your mindset—especially about marketing—then you will love this one. Thank you to Skillshare for sponsoring this episode: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Aug 4

1 hr 7 min

We talk a lot about branding. What it is, what it means, and how it works. But Kirsty Minns lives it. And excels in it at the highest creative level. Kirsty is the executive creative director at Mother Design in London. Mother is a world famous agency and you’ve probably come in contact with one of their incredible campaigns at some point. In this episode, we follow Kirsty through her entire career and hear about the personal and professional choices she made that ultimately lead her to where she is today. You’ll hear about what drives Kirsty’s endless curiosity, how she specializes in not specializing, and why playing the comparison game will only lead you to unhappiness. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jul 28

54 min 25 sec

If punk rock were a genre of design agency, then SNASK would be the Sex Pistols. As they state on their website, SNASK is a “creative agency of misfit geniuses conquering the world through fine lookin’ design and real emotions. To worry about what people think of us is a waste of time.” Freddie Ost is the founder of SNASK and we were fortunate enough to have him on the show and really get to know the person behind the eccentric agency. In the spirit of his business, the conversation oscillates between emotional vulnerability and playfulness. So if all goes well, you will laugh, cry, and be inspired in no particular order. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jul 21

1 hr 5 min

Copywriting is hard. Which is why we always appreciate great copy when we see it. It’s usually simple, clear, and tickles your brain if written well. Cole Schafer is a creative writer. By day he runs a small advertising business called Honey Copy. By night, he writes and publishes poetry under the alias, January Black. He’s got a lot to say and he does it without mincing words. But in a way that will make you smirk. In this episode, Cole and Chris talk about the nuance and challenges of language and how to wield it with grace. We’ll hear about how he found writing, why he left a well-paying agency job for manual labor, and how to name a $15 cookie so that people will happily buy it. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jul 14

1 hr 6 min

Humans are inherent copy machines. Emulation is how we learn to walk, talk and navigate the world. But when it comes to ideas—especially ones we deem “original”—things are different. We become hyper critical of imitation and resent anything close to a copy of our own. Obsessing over ideological ownership. But what we don’t do, is turn that critical lens on ourself. Copy, transform, and combine. According to Kirby Ferguson, this is the recipe for creativity. Kirby is a filmmaker, speaker, and writer. You probably know him best from his acclaimed documentary, Everything is a Remix. You can watch it for free on YouTube and we promise that it will change that way you think about originality And maybe help you let go of that inner critic. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jul 7

1 hr 23 min

Picture yourself at the airport. You’ve just returned from a long, arduous flight and you are exhausted. The last thing you want is to get in your car and make the lengthy drive home. So you open a ride sharing app, hail a car, and moments later you are on your way home. And the car is driving itself while you nap in the back seat. Strangely enough, if you live in the metro-Phoenix area, you can do that. All with the help of autonomous ride service, Waymo. Lauren Schwendimann is the interaction design lead for Waymo. Her and her team are responsible for designing all consumer touch points for the company. Both the app and the rider experience. If you thought designing a website was tough, imagine designing a driverless car experience. How do you quell that innate fear and skepticism of a robot driving you around? In this episode, we talk about human-centered design, the inherent challenges of new technology, and what skills you need to be a great UX designer. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jun 30

57 min 9 sec

When you think of a design agency you might imagine a large, bustling office, with an open floor plan, teaming with creative people. And most of the time, reality would meet your expectations. But not all of the time. Because that's not what Philadelphia based agency, Superfriendly, is. It’s not even close. Superfriendly is a distributed design collaborative. Which means their team members reside all over the world. Like specialized creative agents, they are tapped to collaborate on projects that maximize both their skill and their personal experience. Our guest in this episode—Dan Mall—is the founder and sole employee of Superfriendly. Dan shares how and why he structured his agency the way he did and why having the right people in the room is how you win. You will also hear how Dan reverse engineered his entire career. From entry level designer to agency strategist and the double-edged sword of youthful arrogance. But the most compelling part of this conversation is how Dan and Chris discuss pricing. You’re probably familiar with the various pricing models. Like hourly, value-based, cost plus, etc. But have you ever thought about the ethics involved in each? Some may think value-based pricing is unethical. Others might argue that charging hourly is. Who’s right? And what’s the most important part of the equation? We’ll let you decide, but we suggest you listen to this episode first. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jun 23

1 hr 11 min

What is a brand? What is branding supposed to do? And can you control your own brand? In this Clubhouse Q&A, Chris is joined by Dr. Christine Looser. You might remember her from episode 109. Dr. Looser teaches marketing and branding, and is the head of business, at startup school, The Minerva Project. If you have any kind of interest in branding, then save or bookmark this episode. Because you will want to re-listen to it. The conversation gets brainy and there are plenty of SAT words throughout it. But it is a deep and fascinating dive into the concept of branding. Christine puts Chris on the spot (which is always entertaining) and the two delve deep into the evolution of our brains and culture to try and make sense of the phenomena we call a “brand.” Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jun 16

1 hr 25 min

Mr. Ben Burns is The Futur’s Chief Financial Officer. You might recognize him as the bearded fellow on our YouTube channel. Though officially our CFO, Ben dons several more hats day-to-day. Self-taught designer, web developer, general steward of our company, and father of two. In this episode, we get to know to the man behind the mouse. His origin story, how he met Chris (and got his attention in the first place), and why firing all of his clients was the best move for both his business and career. Ben also shares his experience in the military and police force and how it helped shape who he is and—ultimately—why he traded his gun and badge for a mouse and keyboard. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jun 9

1 hr 17 min

This conversation comes from a live Clubhouse discussion. In the event you don’t know what Clubhouse is, it’s an invite-only social media app that fosters group discussion through live audio. In this episode, Chris joins photography rep, agent, and manager—Andrea Stern—in her photo business forum. The topic: what do you do when you’re stuck in your career? Andrea helps photographer get work and develop their careers. She’s done so for over two decades. But times change. And so does the professional landscape. What drove advertising and got you work twenty years ago, doesn’t work as well today. As a seasoned professional, how do you compete with young up-and-comers? Especially when they have tens of thousands of followers, and you don’t. And that actually matters to clients. In this live Q&A, Andrea and Chris field questions from people that are bored, stuck, or uninspired in their careers. And although they don’t always agree, Andrea and Chris both offer beacons of hope for an unknown future. Being a creative professional is not easy. How do you balance honing your craft, running a business, and marketing yourself? And how do you keep up and age into your career? We’ll let Andrea and Chris answer those big questions for you. But we will say this: if you don’t adapt the times, the times will leave you behind. All the more reason to listen to this episode. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jun 2

1 hr 42 min

This is part 2 of our conversation with struggling artist turned dice-making millionaire, Karen Wang. If you missed part 1, go back an episode and listen to that first. In part 2, Karen shares her experience launching her first Kickstarter—which ultimately lead to $2 million in sales. You’ll hear about how she got into dice-making, what she learned, and all the interesting mistakes along the way. You might think raking in millions of dollars in sales is great. But what happens when you have to then follow through? How do you deal with such massive demand? And what other pitfalls do you have to look forward to? Instant success comes with a responsibility. And Karen is no stranger to that fact. Listen to how she’s navigated the world of manufacturing and all the big challenges that come with it. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

May 26

57 min 10 sec

When you hear that someone is an “overnight success”, rarely did it happen overnight. But our guest in this episode is kind of the exception. Kind of. Karen Wang is the founder of Dispel Dice. A luxury dice-making business that was Kickstarted into existence. Over the course of her 30 day campaign, she raised over $2 million. All for her stunning, beautiful, and bespoke dice. And that first $1 million, happened on day one. If your jaw isn’t on the floor, then please re-read that last paragraph. Because that kind of support for a debut Kickstarter campaign is unheard of. But the path leading up to that fateful launch was no walk in the park. The same morning Karen pulled in her first million from Kickstarter, was the same morning her bank called to say that she had overdrawn her account. In this two part episode Karen walks us through the windy, bump-ridden road she took to build the incredible business she runs today. In part 1, we get to know the person behind the dice. How she went from feeling unfulfilled, unhappy, and dropping out of art school to finding her calling through a friendly game of Dungeons & Dragons. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

May 19

54 min 50 sec

To say that the advertising world is competitive, would be like saying that water is wet. People fight tooth and nail to land big clients. For every account that is won, another is lost. And missing the mark on a pitch you’ve poured your soul into can be heartbreaking. But advertising is also thrilling. You're given a unique problem and it's up to you and your teammates to solve it. Like group of creative detectives. In this episode we were given the rare opportunity to speak with someone operating at the highest level of advertising. Tim Maleeny is the President and Chief Strategy Officer for global agency, Havas. He also writes mystery novels. Tim explains how advertising, strategy, and just being a human all work together. In his twenty plus years working in the industry, he's learned what matters to clients and how to win people over. As an expert brand strategist he also knows when to sell, when to engage, and when to simply celebrate. If you work for an agency, run your own, or are just curious about how brand strategy in advertising works, then you will enjoy this chat. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

May 12

1 hr 23 min

“Everyone has a plan 'till they get punched in the mouth.” We love that quote from Mike Tyson. It encapsulates life so well. You can do everything right—even go above and beyond—and still be a fantastic failure. But as they like to say: failure is inevitable. It’s how you deal with it that matters. Pat Flynn is an acclaimed podcaster, author, entrepreneur, and Pokémon card collector. Yes, you just read “Pokémon.” Growing up, he did everything right. Earned perfect grades. Landed the perfect, dream job. And then, was laid off. But that crushing defeat was the catalyst to his success to come. You might say that getting laid off was the best thing that ever happened to him. In this episode, Pat and Chris discuss failure’s role in success, the benefits of mastermind groups, and how helping others can truly change your life. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

May 5

1 hr

Why do you believe what you believe? How much of it was hardwired and how much of it did you inherit from other people? Like, for instance, your parents. This episode comes from a unique event that we like to call After Hours. It’s a raw, revealing, and open-ended discussion with Chris Do and some our friends from The Futur Pro Group. In this After Hours chat, we delve into how to reframe the way you think about goals. What they are, their meaning to you, and why looking to the past won’t help you today. And things get deep in this vulnerable pep talk. Albeit sage wisdom, you will hear tough love doled out from Chris. So buckle up, settle in, and please enjoy this deep chat, after hours at The Futur. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Apr 28

1 hr 36 min

When it comes to talking about money, a lot of creative folk tend to get uncomfortable. Many of us believe that the work should speak for itself. And that the cost of something correlates with how long it takes to produce. But that’s not always true. There are plenty of ways to bill for your work. Hourly, daily, fixed price, value-based, and retainer. There’s even the good old barter system. Which way is the best? And is it fair and ethical to not bill for the time you spend on something? If these are questions you struggle with answering, then you are in the right place. Our guest, Tom Hirst, is a freelance web developer, author, and mentor. Beyond building custom websites, his specialty is pricing. How to think about it and how to talk about it with your clients. As much as we all want it to, talent alone will not magically get you work. No matter what business you’re in. You need to market, need to sell, and you certainly can’t shy away from talking about money. Do yourself—and your business—a favor and listen up. Because we’re going to change the way you think about pricing forever. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Apr 21

57 min 36 sec

If you could go back in time and learn something new, what would it be? What thing would you study to better equip you for the world and you live in today? In the business world, designers now have a seat at table. They do more than just make things pretty. Their decisions and actions have a direct impact on the bottom line. Which means they have a responsibility to the business. Something that isn’t taught in art school. Our guest in this episode, Abby Guido, is an assistant professor of graphic and interactive design at Tyler School of Art and Architecture, Temple University. She’s got an MBA, her own design practice, and one piece of advice for her students: focus. Abby and Chris discuss teaching philosophies, the role teachers play in the creative process, and try to answer the question: what should we teach people? The two don’t agree on every little thing, but they do agree on this portfolio advice: if they can’t figure out who you are and what you do in less than 60 seconds, they’re moving on to someone else. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Apr 14

1 hr 11 min

What do you think it means to be a creative director? It’s not a trick question. Take a moment to think about it. What does a creative director do exactly? What skills do they need to do it? You might think that being a great creative director is all about honing your craft and having a creative vision for your work. In other words, it’s all about you and your creative decisions. But is that true? This episode comes from a livestream we held in early 2019. It’s all about answering the question: how do you become a creative director? And it comes from good authority. Our guest, Adam Morgan, is an Executive Creative Director at Adobe. Adam outlines nine steps to take on the path to becoming a creative director. And guess what? Eight of them have little to do with the quality of your work. We won’t spoil anything for you, but we agree with Adam. What makes you a great creative, won’t necessarily make you a great creative director. So instead of asking, “How do I become a creative director?” The more important question might be, “Is this the right path for me?” Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Apr 7

1 hr 6 min

When you hear the term “side hustle”, how does it make you feel? Maybe you get excited and think of that one thing you’re passionate about. Or maybe it sends a cringe-filled chill down your spine. We ask because this episode’s guest, Herbert Lui, really hates that phrase. And he’s not alone. You may recall our conversation with Austin Kleon where he shared his own contempt for that same term. When it comes to words and language, nuance is everything. Two people can say the exact same thing, yet each mean something quite different. That important nuance is often amplified in writing. One person’s hustle, is another person’s cringe. Herbert Lui is a writer and the editorial director at WonderShuttle. If you’re an avid reader—and a Kanye West fan—then you may have already read some of his work. He is the author of the unique ebook, The World According to Kanye. It’s really interesting and also free to read, so check it out when you get a chance. What we enjoyed most about the conversation you’re going to hear is how much it challenged the way we think about creativity. And how important it is to make room for (and be receptive to) other perspectives. That’s what creativity is, right? Finding unexpected and alternative ways to see things. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Mar 31

1 hr 2 min

Do you know the difference between a freelancer and a small business owner? We won’t spoil it for you, but there is an important mindset distinction. And it can change everything about the way you do business. In tis deep dive episode, we talk with former software developer and author, Jonathan Stark. If you’re a long time follower of The Futur, then you’ll recognize that name. Jonathan’s mission is to rid the world of hourly billing. And in this Q&A session, he explains how you can do that. Transcend the hired gun, competing on price, and become someone who’s paid for the quality of their ideas. Jonathan also fields other questions about how to find new leads, figuring out who you should market to, and the pros and cons of specializing. If you’re raking it in and loving life, then give this a casual listen. But the rest of us should listen more carefully and use these free nuggets of knowledge to help our creative business pursuits. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Mar 24

1 hr 16 min

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear — not absence of fear.” This poignant quote from Mark Twain taps into the theme of this episode: grit. As in fortitude, guts, backbone Think about the most accomplished people that you admire. What drives them? What is that endless source of fuel that keeps their fire burning? Especially through the darkest and coldest of nights. Our guest today, Mario Quezada, is a brand strategist and owner of a small design and branding agency in Honolulu, Hawaii. He is also an alumni of Art Center College of Art and Design. The same prestigious design school that Chris Do attended. In this episode, Mario and Chris talk about their experience growing up, feeling lost, and dealing with the ugly racism that the world showed them. They also swap stories about their unique experience at Art Center. The culture, the smell of the building, and the teachers that challenged their thinking and opened their mind to the possibilities of graphic design. Like Mr. Twain said: courage is resistance to fear. It builds character. And in this candid conversation, you’ll get to hear how two people navigate that fear. And how showing courage through it all got them to where they are today. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Mar 17

1 hr 49 min

This deep dive episode comes from a livestream we held way back in 2019 on The Futur’s YouTube channel. Our guest, Michael Janda, is the author of the best-selling book Burn Your Portfolio. He’s also a seasoned ad agency executive who helps creative entrepreneurs make more money with less stress. In this episode, we aim our focus on pricing creative work. A topic that every creative professional has struggles with. Michael walks you through a step by step process on how to price your work and how to parse all the variables that come with it. Things like production cost, market value, and client budget, to name a few. If you ever find yourself lost in the bidding process or pulling numbers out of thin air, then get ready to get schooled. Because you’re about to get a crash course in pricing creative work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Mar 10

1 hr 32 min

Have you ever heard someone say that an idea “has legs”? What they mean is that the idea can endure and stay relevant over time. Because that’s what good ideas do—they stick around. Jason Harris is the CEO and co-founder of acclaimed ad agency, Mekanism. They do fantastic and progressive work for some of the best clients around. Brands like Peleton, Jose Cuervo, and Ben & Jerry’s. As a seasoned ad man, Jason knows a good idea when he sees it. And he knows how to present that idea to a client while be a true collaborator in the process. In this episode, Jason shares what he’s learned from running an agency for over 15 years. He talks about the power of branding, building community, and why great storytelling is at the heart of his agency’s success. It’s not often we get to speak with people in Jason’s shoes. If you work at agency—or aspire to start your own some day—then pay attention to this one. Because to survive and thrive, it takes more than just putting out great work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Mar 3

1 hr 4 min

If you’ve followed us for a while, then you’ve probably heard the name Blair Enns a few times. Blair is a business consultant, speaker and author of the acclaimed book, The Win Without Pitching Manifesto. And if you were to ask Chris Do what one book you should read is, it would be that one. We’ve had Blair on the show before, but we wanted to share this deep dive livestream with you because it’s filled with invaluable information. The insights that Blair shares and the perspective he offers is unmatched. You can actually hear Chris’s giddiness during their conversation. They cover a lot of ground in this talk. Discussing things like specializing vs generalizing, how to measure the value you bring to the table, pricing the client not the job and, of course, value based pricing. But the best part is that these are universal business concepts. You’ll find them everywhere outside of the creative industry, but Blair does a fantastic job of contextualizing them for people like us—the creative professional. We suggest listening to the episode once, all the way through. Then on another day, listen to it again. But this time, take notes. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Feb 24

1 hr 22 min

When you hear the term “high performance” you might think about professional athletes. People who go through intense physical and mental training to prepare their mind and body for the game. Not to sound like a meme, but what if we told you that you could borrow similar training techniques to improve your creative performance? Well, according to Erik Korem, there are plenty of parallels between creatives and athletes. High stress, long hours, and intense mental focus. And although he comes from a sports science background, having coached professional NFL players and olympic athletes, the concepts translate. Eat well, rest well and take care of yourself. In this episode, Erik offers tips for how you can become more adaptable, why rest is critical to your success and how your brain and body play an important role in creativity. High performance creative. It’s got a nice ring to it. Thank you to Gusto for sponsoring this episode. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Feb 17

1 hr 17 min

Dustin Lee is the founder of RetroSupply Co, a marketplace for retro brushes, textures, fonts, and more. Over the years, he’s carved out a unique position in the creative tool market. When you search for retro or vintage brushes for Illustrator, Photoshop, and Procreate you’re going to bump into his website. It's a great example of finding your niche. Dustin’s conversation with Chris centers around how creatives can start to think about passive income. But unlike a lot of other talks you have heard or read on the subject, Dustin gets into tactics. Like how to choose the right product, building something that stands out, and overcoming the aversion to marketing. If you're interested in using your creative skills to generate passive income, then this episode will make you happy. Grab your notebook (or laptop) and get ready to take notes. Thank you to Gusto for sponsoring this episode. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Feb 10

1 hr 38 min

2020 normalized the concept of remote work. Many people were forced to take their office home and find new ways to do business and stay connected. Whether they liked it or not. But before the pandemic, remote work wasn’t all that common. Which makes our guest, Cameron Pierron, quite the anomaly. Cameron worked remotely before it was cool. Like, in 2001. And he worked with big names, like Kyle Cooper and Danny Yount. Titans of the motion design industry. All from his home in the mid-West. In Kansas City. This conversation is from 2018, which feels like it was 10 years ago, but we’re willing to bet that people still believe you need to live on the coast, in a major city to work with big companies on high profile projects. Spoiler alert: not true. In fact, it’s far easier to to land those jobs now more than ever. And Cameron is a testament to that statement. He still lives in the mid-West, is self-taught, and continues to work with some of largest companies in the world. In this episode, Cameron walks us through his journey from remote freelancer, to studio owner, to now teaching motion design and creating educational products. He covers the steps and decisions he made to get where he is and even shares the financial milestones that came with it. From his early freelancing day rate to his current business’s revenue goals. If you feel landlocked and like there’s no way you’ll make it to the big leagues, then give this chat a listen. Maybe it will change your mind. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Feb 3

1 hr 9 min

This is part two of a two part series where we reverse the roles and have our beloved founder and The Futur CEO, Chris Do, answer the questions. If you haven’t listened to part one, stop what you’re doing and go listen to that episode first. In part two, we pick up where we left off. With Chris’ vision of what The Futur, both the company and the concept, looks like. He and Anneli discuss the power of company culture, engaging with internet trolls and why mission over money is the best path forward. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jan 27

1 hr 1 min

If you’re a regular listener of the show, then you know our format: Chris Do talks with an interesting guest while carefully poking and prodding them with questions. All in hopes of learning as much about their experience as humanly possible. But today, we’re flipping everything on it’s head. In this two part series, the roles are reversed. Our guest, and Futur Pro Group member Anneli Hannson, will interview Chris. Think of it like a deep dive into the mind of Mr. Do. The person, the businessman, and the educator. In part one, we get to hear Chris’ origin story. About how an introverted refugee became the confident teacher and YouTuber you admire today. It’s easy to make assumptions about people, especially when you haven’t walked in their shoes. And this is probably the closest you can get to wearing Chris’ sneakers. He shares personal stories about his family fleeing Saigon, living life as a cultural outsider, and why it’s so important to have—and to follow—your own internal compass. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Jan 20

1 hr 2 min