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The Futur with Chris Do

Author: The Futur

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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.

136 Episodes
“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
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
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
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
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
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
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
“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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
Have you ever heard of The Game of Life? It’s a multiplayer board game that was invented by Milton Bradley in the 19th century. The idea was to simulate a person going through all of their life experiences. School, marriage, jobs, and so on. And you, the player, get to decide what they do. Eric Siu lives his life as if it were a game. It’s no surprise that he is a big gamer, but he’s also an incredibly successful marketer and businessman. Eric runs a marketing agency, a software company, and is the host of two successful podcasts. And the secret to his success? Gamification. Applying the concepts of leveling up to yourself and your business. Everyone starts as a Level 1, but how far you go is up to you. In this episode, Eric and Chris go deep into marketing tactics. From targeted ad buys to good old SEO and everything in between. But most importantly, they talk about what you can do with your creativity and how to apply it to marketing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
When you hear the term sound design, you might think of fight sequences from action films. Like a fist landing on someone’s face, the cocking of a shotgun or even a building exploding into a giant ball of fire. But you probably don’t think about the subtle atmospheric sound design that permeates your screen. The icy wind underscoring an arctic journey. The ambient noise of a crowded outdoor market unique to Bangkok. Great sound design often goes unnoticed. It takes you out of your seat and submerges you into the story. Adding a new invisible ingredient to the experience. Our guest in this episode is Dallas Taylor. You may know him as the host and creator of Twenty Thousand Hertz, a lovingly crafted podcast revealing the stories behind the world’s most recognizable and interesting sounds. He’s also the Creative Director of Defacto Sound, where he has led thousands of high-profile projects ranging from blockbuster trailers and advertising campaigns to Sundance award-winning films and major television series. In this unique episode, Dallas talks about why sound is just as important as your other senses. Because if you care about the taste of your food or the smell of a room, then you should care about sound just as much. He and Chris also discuss the business side of working in sound and what it takes to make a living doing so. The storytelling, sonic branding and how to get clients excited to work with you on the first call. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
Streaming great music is easy to come by these days. You can search for almost any artist you want on Spotify or Apple Music and listen to them in a few seconds. The Beatles, Metallica and even Tool all have their discography up in the proverbial cloud. But there’s one place online that’s home to a unique genre of music. Music that’s streaming all day, every day. Whether you're listening or not. Chillhop Music is a music label based out of Rotterdam. They work with artists who primarily make relaxing beats and music to help you, well, chill. They stream this wonderful and mellow music 24/7 on YouTube. And over the years, have amassed over three million subs. In today's episode, we talk with the man behind the music label: Bas van Leeuwen. Bas majored in international business, but is slowly and deliberately finding his way back to creativity. He and Chris talk about where Chillhop came from, how they work with artists and, of course, the business behind it all. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
This is part two of our fascinating talk with illustrator, children’s book author and creative entrepreneur, Arree Chung. If you haven’t listened to part one yet, go do that first. In this second episode, Arree talks us through his business plan and the unique opportunity he had to teach kids (and their parents) how to be creative. And how doing that earned him over $400K in 36 hours. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
Comments (24)

Ashwynne Thorne

This was an awesome podcast

Feb 11th

Ellen Lee

Some helpful points in increasing my instra followers! Thanks guys!

Nov 15th

Elijah Claude

"The fear of losing it all is not more powerful than the fear of not living up to your fullest potential." Absolutely incredible. I feel that so much!!

Sep 18th

Elijah Claude

Pass the baton by passing opportunity instead of resources. Thats powerful!

Sep 18th

Ashish Kumar

I am not able to find the one with Unmesh Dinda

Jul 17th


I cannot find the episode with Jessica foster (I think it was her) about LinkedIn. I wanted to listen to it again. is there anyway to access to it? (or maybe I'm blind but I've been looking for it without success)

Feb 17th

Dc Patterson

what a great interview. A very useful topic and explanation.

Feb 11th

Benjamin Harjo

This is great information for anyone thinking or wanting to start their own creative/design business.

Jan 7th

Darrel Cheong

best episode ever.

Nov 20th
Reply (1)

Davis Varghese

probably one of the best episodes ever.

Oct 2nd

Amin Jefferson

Totally life changing. Thank you All for doing this. Just to say you've helped a kid in Africa. Best podcast ever!

Sep 28th

Alexandre Venturin

one page

Sep 21st

charles-napier joubert

this interview was life changing

Sep 11th

Thought Harvest

a great honest episode

Aug 14th
Reply (1)


I love the girl in this episode. her comments make my day

Aug 6th


Hey I love your podcast but OH GOD please fix the audio, every time y'all laugh or talk a bit louder, my ears get fricken raped

Mar 2nd

Manos Alexakis

Thanks for all Chris

Jan 12th

Karim Assassi

Just amazing thank you, loving your podcast easily one of the best podcasts i've come across!

Apr 19th

Brittany Hong

Chris的声音实在太有磁性了。。。光听声音都迷死我了~( ̄▽ ̄~)~

Mar 10th

Ganesh Burle

Hey Chris, Congratulations. you doing really awesome for the community. More than your knowledge and success, I found great humanity in you. keep inspiring us.

Jan 24th
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