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Hi, I'm Chris. I’m a mindful creative and design leader. My focus is building tools for creativity and wellbeing.

A portrait of a cheerful man with a curly hair and beard, smiling widely, showing white teeth. He has dark, short, curly hair, and a groomed beard. Freckles are visible on his face and he's wearing a black crew neck sweater. The background is a warm, neutral tone.

Currently, I lead the video product design team at Adobe. My team and I imagine and design all new workflows and features in Premiere Pro and new product lines in the incubation phase.

During my time on the video team, we have shipped dozens of artificial intelligence features including auto-reframe, remix audio, scene edit detection, enhance speech, auto color and hundreds more efficiency and creativity boosting improvements including new speech to text, captions, properties panel, and redesigns.

Previously at Adobe, I was the design lead for Acrobat. For two years, I helped reimagine the platform for the web and made several billion PDFs accessible with computer vision.

Previously, I was a product designer at the Washington Post Innovation Lab and co-founded Little Tinker a software and hardware art things company.

My leadership style is of a service leader, and I take a lot of pleasure from teaching. I have experience teaching web design and coding at Syracuse University as well as being a UX instructor at General Assembly in San Francisco, CA.

I’m also a passionate road, track, trail, and ultra runner. With 12 marathons, a 3x Boston Qualifier, and a personal best of 2:41 at the 2024 London Marahon, my goals include completing all six major marathons (four remaining, two planned for 2024), finishing a marathon in under 2:30, and running into my 80s.

In addition to participating in races and learning about myself, I enjoy giving back to the sport as a certified coach in Jack Daniel’s Distance Training, a designer of VDOT, a platform for runners and coaches, and a volunteer race videographer as a follow cam operator.

I’m an active member of the Brooklyn Track Club and can be found at the San Francisco Running Company group runs.

I’m an active member of a Zen Buddhist sangha in the Lâm Te Dyana School (Linji) lineage in the Plum Village tradition. My dharma name is Steadfast Bodhisattva of the Source and I’m deeply interested in the mind-body connection and its relationship to inner peace and various states of consciousness.

I was born and raised in Bristol, Rhode Island to Julianne M McCarthy and Dr. James A Azar, a hardware technician and developmental psychologist. I have one sister, Dr. Margaret Azar, who is a child psychologist and faculty member at Brown University in Providence, RI.

I’m an alum of Syracuse University and currently living in Brooklyn, NY.

Writing

2024 — “How to stand out in the crowded design world” Adobe.design [submitted]

2023 — “What does a Design Manager do?” Adobe.design

2021 — “Premiere Pro gets a cutting-edge refresh for today’s creator” Adobe.com

2020 — “Accessible design for all.” Powered By Design, Stevens, Renée. p.168-171

Mantras

Because of impermanence, all things are possible.

All you need is love. If it’s not love, let it all go.

Contact

You can find me on instagram at @christophermazar or email at christopherazar@gmail.com.

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