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Not Not Smiling: The Year So Far Design Studio

Not Not Smiling: The Year So Far

  • 6 read
  • 25/03/2022

Not Not Smiling began as an in-person event at our London studio for International Women’s Day – celebrating and promoting inspirational women within the creative industries and creating a platform to hear about their practice, process and experiences.

Now in its fourth year, the event is online as a series of IGTV interviews with an amazing lineup of women based in each of our studio’s locations – London, New York and Sydney.

We’re also spotlighting a charity local to each studio – Sistah Space, YWCA Australia and Girls Inc. Each of these charities share a common goal: to uplift and enrich women’s lives. Not only are we spotlighting these charities, we will also be making a charitable donation to each of them.

As we reach the halfway point of this year’s series, we look back at the interviews so far and share a bit more about the three amazing charities and how you can support them.

Episode 1: Alice Nyong - LDN


We kicked off NNS 2021 with an episode from freelance illustrator, Alice Nyong, who produces primarily hand-drawn illustrations and designs ranging from private commissioned pieces, murals and event displays to high end retailer advent calendar designs. Working from quick conceptual sketches through to polished presentations, her interview chronicles her mission to show how far you can take a creative career. See her interview here.

Sistah Space

Our London studio selected to support Sistah Space: A charity based in Hackney who provide a space for African heritage women experiencing domestic violence and abuse. Sistah Space is a safe haven, hosting an extensive list of programmes, group sessions and advocacy. Sistah Space’s work caters to cultural nuances that other groups may gloss over or misunderstand. The safety of women is the heart of their mission, if you’d like to find out more and support Sistah Space, click here

Episode 2: Evi O - SYD


Evi O runs Evi O Studio, a Sydney based design office specialising in print and digital publishing, brand identity and creative collaborations. Evi spoke with us to share the twists and turns that lead to her creating her own studio. See the episode here.


In Sydney, the team chose to support the YWCA whose vision is simple: A future where gender equality is a reality. YWCA lists their values as feminism, inclusion, excellence, innovation and integrity. YWCA are bettering the lives of women and girls all over Australia. They currently offer support for a long list of issues including homelessness, domestic abuse, parenting support, mentorship, disability support, child services and crisis services. YWCA also offers programmes for Aborignal Women’s Leadership. To support YWCA and be a part of this important community work, click here.

Episode 3: Michelle Mattar - NY


Next we heard from our New York studio with an interview with Michelle Mattar - a brand builder who founded branding house, Practice. Michelle’s interview is evidence that blending skills (in this case strategy, copywriting, graphic design and art direction) and using all of your knowledge can take you in amazing directions. Watch the interview here.

Girls Inc

DS New York’s chosen charity is Girls Inc, an organisation who are ‘inspiring girls to be strong, smart and bold.’ They have over 1500 sites across the USA and Canada where they run programmes and mentor girls aged 5-18 and create opportunities for them to continue a successful future. Through many local programmes, Girls Inc create a physically and emotionally safe environment. They also run year round after-school and weekend programmes encouraging girls to look at STEM careers. To support Girls Inc on their incredible journey, click here.

Episode 4: Kate Strudwick - LDN


Our most recent episode features Kate Strudwick, a multidisciplinary designer, currently working at the Google Creative Lab in London. Kate’s work looks at the relationships between design, technology, science and research. In this interview we find out more about Kate’s role as a designer alongside scientists and engineers. See it here.

There are 5 more episodes to come in the 2021 IGTV series of Not Not Smiling, featuring interviews from Livia Lima, Gail Anderson, Isabelle Landicho, Jane Connory and Ros Moriarty. Follow our Instagram to keep up with Not Not Smiling and for more information on Sistah Space, Girls Inc and YWCA.