About Studio Emmi, Emmi Salonen and Creative Ecosystem

Hello there, I’m Emmi. I set up Studio Emmi in 2005 to partner with clients and creatives who want to make a positive contribution to society and planet.

Whether it’s engaging audiences through purpose-led brand identities, mentorship for creative wellbeing or making engaging spaces, I work with people to find the very best solutions through design.

My output is uplifting and grounded in empathy. My process is collaborative and inclusive, never ready-made, and always adaptable, whether small or large scale, local or global. Let’s create together.


  • Design
  • Consultancy
  • Mentoring
  • Talks
  • Workshops

You can’t just arrive at a solution. In design and in life. So I like to ask questions, to listen, pause for reflection. It’s important to stay curious, to find the unusual in the usual. Take a second look. Think again.

Problems hold the key to their own solution if we bring our awareness to them.

Over the years I have helped businesses in the worlds of retail, commerce, culture, academia and policy making by championing messages for a better society, positive participation, sustainable design, heirloom quality and charitable causes.

I am author of the book Common Interest: Documents, and have contributed to industry magazines on topics ranging from typography to women in design. I regularly lecture on design topics at various universities based in the UK and beyond.

As an accredited Happiness Facilitator I give talks and workshops about my personal design journey and CREATIVE ECOSYSTEM, guiding creatives in their wellbeing and careers.

Born in Finland, I’m a strong advocate for a balanced life full of curiosity, growth and wonder. I studied graphic design in the UK at the University of Brighton. In 2001 I moved to northern Italy to work at Fabrica, Benetton Group’s prestigious communication research studio for young designers. I then worked at Karlssonwilker in New York and Futerra sustainability agency as their UK Creative Director. I now run Studio Emmi, based in London.

Inspired by the frequently asked questions and enquiries I receive from design commissioners and students, I wrote and designed Common Interest: Documents. Published by Index Books, the publication explores document design in the fields of arts, culture, academia, public sector and charities. You can see more here.

I was one of the keynote speakers at AIGA Design Conference in New Orleans, USA, talking to an audience of 2000+.

Next event

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What is it

I'm a founder of CREATIVE ECOSYSTEM, a model that nurtures sustainable creative wellbeing and supports individuals and organisations through workshops, inspiring talks, events and 1-2-1 mentoring. I'm also an accredited Happiness Facilitator.

Why it’s needed

I used to think it was only hard work that leads to good creative OUTPUT. I then learned the hard way that in order to keep producing creative work sustainably, I needed a healthy balance of inspiring sources of INPUT.

CREATIVE ECOSYSTEM model provides you with wisdom and ideas that will not only inspire you to develop and enjoy your creative practise, but will help you find meaningful connections in life – be it nourishing self-kindness or cultivating happier interactions with people and the environment.

My story

A few years ago I took a sabbatical after feeling completely deflated with the creative industries. I had the opportunity to embark on a journey to French Polynesia, the US, Colombia, the Arctic and Ethiopia and in the process rediscovered my creative spark again.

It’s easy to feel energised and inspired when you’re travelling, but how do you keep that up once you’re back in the everyday? CREATIVE ECOSYSTEM is about recognising those areas in your everyday, that give you energy and inspiration. Giving as much attention to the INPUT as the OUTPUT.

Find out more

Get in touch to find out more, click here to read more, or participate via my Instagram @StudioEmmi.

You are used to producing creative OUTPUT. But how do you nurture your creative INPUT?

Discover your how to sustain your creative wellbeing by exploring the Creative Ecosystem wheel INPUT areas:

CONNECTION / Connect who you are with what you do to nurture your purpose
WONDER / Explore the ordinary with curiosity to nurture your inspiration
PAUSE / Book in time for solitude and reflection to nurture your intuition
MOVEMENT / Stay fluid and evolve with the process to nurture your resilience
JOY / Enjoy immersing yourself fully in an activity to nurture your flow

Which INPUT area you would like to start your creative wellbeing journey with?

Visit the website to find out more

Selected Client list

  • AIGA - The Professional Association for Design
  • Aram Gallery
  • Artek
  • AVA Publishing
  • BBC
  • British Council
  • Blueprint Magazine
  • Body Shop
  • Centre for London
  • Clarence House
  • Climate-KIC
  • Design Museum
  • Dulux
  • Finnish Institute in the UK & Ireland
  • Finnish National Gallery
  • Harrow Arts Centre
  • Iniva - Institute of International Visual Arts
  • ITC - Independent Theatre Council
  • Learning Trust
  • Phaidon
  • POD
  • Positive Luxury
  • The Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts
  • The RSA
  • Rich Mix
  • Somerset House
  • Tate Britain
  • Thames & Hudson
  • TFL - Transport for London
  • UCLH - University College London Hospital
  • Vital Arts
  • Wallpaper*

Selected talks & workshops

  • AGRAFA Design Conference, Katowice, POLAND
  • AIGA Design Conference, New Orleans, USA
  • All Flows, UK
  • Bucks New University, UK
  • CEDIM School of Innovation, MEXICO
  • Chelsea Collage of Art, UK
  • Design Matters Tokyo, JAPAN
  • Design Museum, London, UK
  • ETIC, Lisbon, PORTUGAL
  • Kingston School of Art, UK
  • London Collage of Communication, UK
  • London Metropolitan University, UK
  • Manchester Metropolitan University, UK
  • Margate Festival of Design, UK
  • Middlesex University, UK
  • Nottingham Trent University, UK
  • Ravensbourne University, UK
  • RGD DesignThinkers Toronto, CANADA
  • Royal College of Art, UK
  • RSA, London, UK
  • Shillington College, London, UK
  • Selected C, Bilbao, SPAIN
  • Typographic Circle, London, UK
  • University of Brighton, UK
  • University College Falmouth, UK
  • University of Northampton, UK
  • University of Southampton, UK
  • YCN, London, UK
  • Wayne State University, Detroit, USA

Selected press

My projects have been published in more than 100 books, publications and blogs. Here’s a flavour of the much appreciated lift ups:

People of Print: Studio Emmi by Emily Gosling

Graphic Design: A User’s Manual by Adrian Shaughnessy, Laurence King

Great British Identity by Marius Sala, Index Book

The Best of Brochure Design by Kiki Eldridge, Rockport

Los Logos: Compass by Robert Klanten, Die Gestalten Verlag

Selected exhibitions

My work has been exhibited around Europe, Asia and both North and South America. Here's some of my favourites:

Design Museum, London
Kemistry Gallery, London
Espeis, NY
Spazio Italia, LA
Design Forum, Helsinki
Ginza Graphic Gallery, Tokyo
Galleria Walden, Berlin

Selected awards

Antalis McNaughton The Review, Europe
Overall winner

Robert Horne Shout Awards, UK
Overall Winner

Print’s Creativity + Commerce, USA

Sappi Ideas That Matter, Europe