I was born in Winchester, Massachusetts in 1980. I’ve called many places home since then, including Brookline, MA; Wilmington, DE; Detroit, MI; Providence, RI; Penang, Malaysia; and, since 2006, North Carolina. I live with my wife, daughter, son, dog, cat, and six chickens in Durham (36.00731658935547,-78.89483642578125).

I graduated with a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2003.

You can find me on Twitter and good old-fashioned email (chrbutler {at} gmail dot com).

What I Do for a Living

I’ve spent the last twenty years working as a designer, consultant, manager, writer, and creator.

Currently Chief Design Officer Newfangled, I advise clients about how to apply visual language, design, and technology to solve business and marketing problems and coach them on how to decipher the patterns that show what is working and what is not.

Since 2014, I have personally consulted 159 creative, digital, and marketing firms on how to do better design. Prior to that, I worked on hundreds of interaction design projects of many, many kinds.


I’ve written many articles covering a wide range of design-related topics, but I think my most unique contributions tend to be when I write about my passion for design leadership and the way culture evolves through the creation and integration of new technologies.

You can find my writing here in the archive, as well as at Newfangled, PRINT, HOW, and Smashing Magazine.

I wrote the Interaction column at PRINT Magazine from 2012-2015, which was an enormous amount of fun. Sadly, these pieces aren’t reliably archived. A few can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Finally, I also wrote a book on how web designers can strategically enrich their practice, called The Strategic Web Designer (HOW Books, 2012).


I’m the creator of Design Tomorrow, a podcast about design, technology, and being human. It was born out of my newsletter, Don’t Think About the Future. I’ve stopped making new episodes for now, but the archive is still fully available. The show got pretty positive reviews.

I’m probably most proud of this episode, about the technological future that could have been, or maybe this episode, about the environmental cost of product design.


I’ve been interviewed by a variety of people in a variety of contexts. Here are some of my favorite conversations:

Speaking and Events

I’ve spoken on interaction design and digital marketing topics at a wide variety of events and organizations, including HOW Design Live, the HOW Interactive Design Conference — for which I served on the advisory board for five years and was the Program Director for two — the AIGA, the American Marketing Association, the UCDA Design Summit, ConvergeSE, RISD’s Entrepreneur Mindshare, the Hopscotch Design Festival, High Five Conference, and many others. Some of my favorite talks are:

If reading heavily-illustrated transcripts of hour-long talks isn’t your thing and you just must see and hear what I’m actually like on stage, then I suppose this video of my talk on “The Permanent Transition” from the 2014 HOW Interactive Design Conference will do.